The Apex Book of World SF: Volume 1 (Apex World of Speculative Fiction)

Lavie Tidhar

Language: English

Pages: 302


Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

The Apex Book of World SF edited by Lavie Tidhar, features award-winning science fiction and fantasy short stories from Asia, Eastern Europe and around the world.

The world of speculative fiction is expansive; it covers more than one country, one continent, one culture. Collected here are sixteen stories penned by authors from Thailand, the Philippines, China, Israel, Pakistan, Serbia, Croatia, Malaysia, and other countries across the globe. Each one tells a tale breathtakingly vast and varied, whether caught in the ghosts of the past or entangled in a postmodern age.

Among the spirits, technology, and deep recesses of the human mind, stories abound. Kites sail to the stars, technology transcends physics, and wheels cry out in the night. Memories come and go like fading echoes and a train carries its passengers through more than simple space and time. Dark and bright, beautiful and haunting, the stories herein represent speculative fiction from a sampling of the finest authors from around the world.

Table of Contents:

S.P. Somtow(Thailand) — “The Bird Catcher”

Jetse de Vries(Netherlands) — “Transcendence Express”

Guy Hasson (Israel) — “The Levantine Experiments”

Han Song (China) — “The Wheel of Samsara”

Kaaron Warren (Australia/Fiji) — “Ghost Jail”

Yang Ping (China) — “Wizard World”

Dean Francis Alfar (Philippines) — “L’Aquilone du Estrellas (The Kite of Stars)”

Nir Yaniv (Israel) — “Cinderers”

Jamil Nasir (Palestine) — “The Allah Stairs”

Tunku Halim (Malaysia) — “Biggest Baddest Bomoh”

Aliette de Bodard (France) — “The Lost Xuyan Bride”

Kristin Mandigma (Philippines) — “Excerpt from a Letter by a Social-realist Aswang”

Aleksandar Žiljak (Croatia) — “An Evening In The City Coffehouse, With Lydia on My Mind”

Anil Menon (India) — “Into the Night”

Mélanie Fazi (France, translated by Christopher Priest) — “Elegy”

Zoran Živković (Serbia, translated by Alice Copple-Tošić)—“Compartments”

(Note: Digital edition does not contain the Zoran Živković's story)

Cover art and design by Sarah Anne Langton.

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� Here’s how the day of reckoning happened, Corey: It’s mid-morning and I’m wandering aimlessly. My mother has taken the train to Bangkok with Detective Jed. He’s decided that her untouchable farang-ness might get him an audience with some major official in the police department. I don’t see my friends at the river or in the marketplace. But it’s not planting season, and there’s no school. So I’m playing by myself, but you can only flip so many pebbles into the river and tease so many water

again, in and out of her mouth again, how the hell? She couldn’t even get her own fist in there. She watched him this time over the side and down to the ground where he seemed to…disintegrate. Lisa dragged herself down the stairs. There were people in many of the rooms, most with their hands over their ears. Others moved up and down the stairs, purposeless. She knew some of them, had sat and talked all night with them, but none of them acknowledged her or seemed willing even to meet her eyes.

grabbed her ankle, both ankles, and pulled her back. No time to prepare, she landed with a crack on her chin and lay there, pain blurring her thoughts of all else. “You can’t step over the gravestones,” Rashmilla said, shaking her head. She dabbed at Lisa’s chin with a filthy rag. “They moved them so carefully, laying them down one by one. It doesn’t matter, though. The ghosts don’t care about how gentle they were.” Lisa crawled from stone to stone and saw that Rashmilla was telling the truth;

the dirt. He caught his toe on a jagged corner and he tripped. He broke his fall with the heel of one hand, and a sharp edge sliced into the soft mound and blood oozed out. He walked his arrogant, hip-thrusting walk past her to the stairs. Rashmilla helped him, but Lisa could see the ghosts hovering behind her, waiting for her to release him. A scream came, harsh and odd in the silence. She still had the energy to step forward and look, see what had caused the noise. Other people did, too, men

their hands bent back at an impossible angle. There’s a Chinese opera troupe like I’ve seen in Shanghai, glittering costumes, masks painted on the faces in garish colours, boys dressed as monkeys leaping to and fro; the Thai and the Chinese striving to outdo each other in noise and brilliance. And on a grill, being tended by a fat woman, pigeons are barbecuing, each one on a mini-spear of steel. And I’m reminded of the open fire and the sizzling of half-plucked feathers. “You got money?” Sombun

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