Starred Review. Wondrous worlds await U.S. SF fans in this sensitively chosen, impeccably translated anthology of Continental European science fiction stories, ranging from 1987 to 2005. Offering "emotional satisfaction and cerebral excitement," as James Morrow puts it in his introduction, highlights include Johanna Sinisalo's "Baby Doll," a Finnish denunciation of materialistic exploitation of children; Romanian Lucian Merisca's "Some Earthlings' Adventures on Outrerria," an excruciating political satire; Valerio Angelisti's "Sepultura," which offers a neo-Dantean Infernoscape; and W.J. Maryson's "Verstummte Musik," a Dutch near-future Orwellian nightmare. A French twist on human-machine interface lifts Jean-Claude Dunyach's "Separations" into a meditation on the nature of artistic creativity, while Elena Arsenieva's "A Birch Tree, a White Fox" exquisitely illustrates the quintessential Russian soul. These "disciplined speculations" by European writers and their painstaking translators not only excite the mind, they move the heart. (June)
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Except for Stanislaw Lem, contemporary European sf and fantasy writers aren't well represented in English translation. The Morrows, husband and wife, address this long-standing sad situation by teaming top-notch translators and some of today's best European sf and fantasy hands in a superlative anthology. Leading lights of French, Polish, Spanish, and 11 other literatures show their writing chops while employing a very broad range of genre motifs, from time machines to space travel. Jean-Claude Dunyach contributes "Separations," the multidimensional story of a zero-gravity choreographer on an unforgettable space ride with a tormented captain. In "The Fourth Day to Eternity," the Czech Ondrej Neff recounts the fate of a frenzied physicist caught in a confusing time loop. As James Morrow underlines in a witty and literate introduction, a truly representative sampling of European speculative fiction would span volumes. Under the attention-grabbing banner of the SFWA Hall of Fame series, this book tantalizingly introduces English-language readers to Europe's riches and may incite them to clamor for more. Hays, Carl
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