Jay Lake. A Water Matter. (The Year’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy 2009)

Originally : online on Tor.com

The story is still online on the Tor.com website here, so my recommendation is to head over there and read it.

Lake writes some really, really good SF, and this is more straightforward fantasy than I normally read. I enjoyed it – as he invariably does he puts effort into creating an interesting background to his story, rather than relying on a standard heroic-fantasy quasi-medieval setting, and doesn’t go for the stereotryped roles women often have, and in this story features a woman facing a mortal challenge from a powerful adversary, and having to rely on her cunning and skills, and those of her colleagues, to meet that challenge. It’s visceral in terms of the action and the denouement, and altogether worth the read.

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