The Year’s Best Science Fiction, Third Annual Collection. Gardner Dozois. 1986

Story summaries written between 1998-1999

Lucius Shepard. The Jaguar Hunter.
Originally in : Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, 1985

Onofrio Esteves, due to his wife’s frivolity, has taken up hunting jaguars again. One jaguar in fact, and quite a different jaguar to those he hunted in the past. The powerful force which is the jaguar takes him deep into the Central American jungle – very deep.

Michael Swanwick and William Gibson. Dogfight.
Originally in : Omni July 1985

Deke’s a wetware VR game player who takes a local wheelchair-bound World War I biplane scenario champ on. He wins the VR battle, but little else.

Frederik Pohl. Fermi and Frost.
Originally in : Asimov’s Science Fiction, January 1985

Nuclear folly finally leaves the world a shattered place, thus solving Fermi’s Paradox. A young boy finds himself in Iceland, sufficiently far away from the fallout to provide a glimmer of hope through the nuclear winter. And perhaps to seeing the bigger future that Fermi pondered.

Bruce Sterling. Green Days in Brunei.
Originally in : Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine, October 1985.

Hi-tech espionage and environmental/big business shennanigans.

John Crowley. Snow.
Originally in : Omni, November 1985.

Sensitive story about memory and death. The rich are able to have their lives recorded, and playback of the video at mausoleums enable those left behind to re-live the past.

Orson Scott Card. The Fringe
Originally in : The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, October 1985.

A wheelchair-bound teacher in small farming community puts the finger on bootleggers.

Karen Joy Fowler. The Lake Was Full Of Artificial Things.
Originally in : Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine, October 1985.

A woman undergoes VR therapy in an attempt to resolve issues from her youth.

Robert Silverberg. Sailing to Byzantium.
Originally in: Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine, February 1985.

Advanced civilization recreates great cities from history, with short-timers and virtually immortal constructs.

James Patrick Kelly. Solstice.
Originally in : Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine, June 1985.

Rich, internationally renowned drug artist begins to see his clone/twin/daughter slipping away from him against a background of the summer solstice at Stonehenge.

Avram Davidson. Duke Pasquale’s Ring.
Originally in : Amazing Science Fiction Stories, May 1985.

A Dr. Esterhazy story.

Joe Haldeman. More Than The Sum Of His Parts.
Originally in : Playboy, May 1985.

Industrial injury leads to cyborgisation, including certain organs which do not normally feature in Science Fiction.

Nancy Kress. Out Of All Them Bright Stars.
Originally in : Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, March 1985

An alien pays a short visit to a diner in the mid-West, giving the waitress pause for thought.

Walter Jon Williams. Side Effects.
Originally in : Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, June 1985.

Black perspective on medical trials. Not SF.

James Tiptree Jr. The Only Neat Thing To Do.
Originally in : The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, October 1985

Young Croati starts the story as a spoilt brat who uses her parent’s money to give her spaceship a deep space capacity. On her travels she comes across a microscopic alien with which she becomes intimately acquainted, and with whom her very future is predicated.

Bruce Sterling. Dinner in Audoghast.
Originally in : Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine May 1985.

North African city, pre-Christian. A wizened seers offers a bleak perspective for those dining. Not SF.

George R. R. Martin. Under Siege.
Originally in :Omni October 1985

Post-holocaust, and one variant of mutant are able to travel back in time to enter the heads of long dead individuals and attempt to alter the course of history.

Howard Waldrop. Flying Saucer Rock & Roll.
Originally in : Omni January 1985

Doo-wop showaddywaddy.

Lucius Shepard. A Spanish Lesson.
Originally in : Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, December 1985

A beatnik on the Med comes across a very, very strange brace of clones. They are attempting to escape from a bizarre alternate world dominated by the undead Hitler.

Pat Cadigan. Roadside Rescue.
Originally in : Omni July 1985

A roadside meeting with a furry alien which feasts on the fear of humans.

James P. Blaylock. Paper Dragons.
Originally in : Imaginary Lands 1985

A strange West Coast port, with humongous crabs coming ashore, paper dragons being built in garages, and palpable undercurrents of just waiting for something to happen. Almost a Stephen King-esque story, except Stephen King would have added 600 pages and a bucketload of blood. Much the better without it.

R.A. Lafferty. Magazine Section.
Originally in : Amazing Science Fiction Stories, July 1985

The Truth Behind The Tabloid Headlines.

Lewis Shiner. The War at Home.
Originally in : Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction, May 1985

‘Nam flashback.

S.C. Sykes. Rockabye Baby.
Originally in : Analog Mid-December 1985

A paraplegic has a long-shot option to regain everything – but it will mean losing all his memory. Is physical health that important to him?

Kim Stanley Robinson. Green Mars.
Originally in : Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine September 1985.

Mountaineering on Mars.

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