This is the first post of the Looking Forward feature focusing on releases in the Fantasy and Science Fiction areas in 2010. I'm planning on at least two more post like this to let readers know about some titles I excited by. UPDATE: My Fantasy list and the Sci-Fi, Steampunk, and Urban Fantasy list are now up as well.
I truly think this could be the year of the anthology with so many heavy hitters such as the GRRM edited Warriors and Lou Anders checking in with Swords & Dark Magic which is about what you expect from that title and the superhero themed With Great Power. Plus there are many interesting idea specific books such as Shine: An Anthology of Optimistic Science Fiction, Givers & Halpern's Fermi Paradox themed Is Anybody Out There?, and Gateways inspired by the universe Frederik Pohl created with many great names trying their hand at what he started.
There is a little something for everyone no matter what your tastes and even if you aren't into short stories a few of your favorite authors are bound to be in at least one of these anthologies, which for the most part are all-original, but a few reprints are included as well. I've also included a few author specific best of collections coming out that caught my eye. Everything is listed in publication order based off the information I've culled from various sources such as Amazon, publisher's sites, and author blogs. The titles are than followed by a short description along with commentary on a couple since info is scant on some. Any all-original anthologies are noted as such somewhere in the description.
The New Dead: A Zombie Anthology edited by Christopher Golden
Release Date: February 16th | Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
With original stories from Joe Hill, Mike Carey, John Connolly, Max Brooks, Kelley Armstrong, Tad Williams, David Wellington, David Liss, Aimee Bender, Jonathan Maberry, and many others, this is a wildly diverse collection focused on all things Zombie. The Brooks story is related to World War Z and Carey's story focuses on Nicky from the Felix Castor novels.
Release Date: March 16th | Publisher: TOR
Firstly, this will contain a new Dunk & Egg story, which is the longest written so far. That alone is worth the cover price, but we are further treated to new original stories taking on different aspects of the Warrior from Joe Haldeman, Robin Hobb, Tad Williams, Joe Lansdale, Peter S. Beagle, Naomi Novik, Diana Gabaldon, David Weber, Carrie Vaughn, and S.M. Stirling along with quite a few other heavy hitters.
Shine: An Anthology of Optimistic Science-Fiction edited by Jetse de Vries
Release Date: March 23 | Publisher: Solaris
Some of the world's most talented SF writers (including Alastair Reynolds, Kay Keyon, Holly Phillips, and Jason Stoddard) show how things can change for the better. From gritty polyannas to workable futures, from hard-fought progress to a better tomorrow; heart-warming and mind-expanding stories that will (re-) awaken the optimist in you!
I believe this will be a mostly original anthology, but I could ascertain that for sure. For most of the anthology de Vries is focusing on up-and-coming writers so don't be surprised if many of these names become familiar in the years to come. Other contributors include: Lavie Tidhar, Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Paula R. Stiles, Jacques Barcia, Gareth L. Powell, Aliette de Bodard, Eva Chapman, Gord Sellar, Madeline Ashby, Eric Gregory, and Mari Ness. The cover art is by Vincent Chong, which was originally commissioned by the Editor.
Release Date: May | Publisher: Tachyon
All of the finest stories of this popular pioneer of urban fantasy and creator of the mythical city of Newford have been chosen by the author — and his fans — and gathered in this extraordinary collection. Asked to suggest their own favorite stories for inclusion, de Lint's fans have been instrumental in creating a treasury that will spark the imaginations of readers of all ages. These are retold fairy tales and new modern myths that thoroughly redefine the boundaries of magic.
Between these pages are all manner of enchanted characters in unusual places: playful Crow Girls who sneak into the homes of their sleeping neighbors, a graffiti artist who risks his life to expose a deadly conspiracy, and an unrepentant trickster who throws one last party to reveal a lost folkloric tradition.
Release Date: May 29 | Publisher: Prime Books
Remember the werewolves of classic stories and films, those bloodthirsty monsters that transformed under the full moon, reminding us of the terrible nature that lives within all of us? Today's werewolves are much more suave - and even sexy - and they've moved from British moors to New York City lofts, shaved, and got jobs. But as the tales of these writers will show you, they remain no less wild and passionate, and they still tug at the part of our being where a wild animal used to be. Running With the Pack includes stories from Carrie Vaughn, Laura Anne Gilman, and C.E. Murphy, and they will convince you that despite their gentrification, werewolves remain as fascinating and terrifying as ever.
Is Anybody Out There? edited by Nick Givers & Marty Halpern
Why is it that, in such a vast cosmos, with hundreds of billions of stars in this galaxy alone, and no doubt billions of Earth-like planets orbiting them, we have found no evidence of intelligent alien life? So: we’re asking for entertaining stories that explore explanations for this enigma, looking seriously or comically at solutions to Fermi’s question. Is intelligent life a fluke, arising only once or twice in the universe’s long history? Does intelligence arise frequently, but with gulfs of time and distance keeping technological civilizations irretrievably apart? Do such civilizations inevitably implode or self-destruct within a few hundred years? Is our definition of intelligence fatally subjective? Are aliens among us right now, unseen? Are there aliens everywhere, but determined not to let us notice them? These, or other hypotheses, no matter how unlikely, should inform contributions to Is Anybody Out There?
Stories edited by Neil Gaiman and Al Sarrantonio
Not much info has been released about this all-original anthology other than its goal is genre as literature, but Joe Hill is confirmed and I'm sure Gaiman will treat us to something. Given all the anthologies Gaiman has contributed to over the years he should be able to pull together a large array of authors.
The Best of Kim Stanley Robinson edited by Johnathan Strahan
A retrospective overview including stories from Robinson's Mars universe and more. This collection will include stories from the entirety of Stanley's career will including The Planet On The Table, The Martians, The Blind Geometer, Black Air as well as stories from The Martians.
This anthology will be a reprint focused, but the line-up has not been set. In fact Strahan is looking for recommendations here. The art is a painting from Todd Lockwood.
Wings of Fire collects the best short stories about dragons. From fire breathing lizards to wise serpentine sages; from writhing wyrms to snakelike devourers of heroes; from East to West and everywhere in between, Wings of Fire is sure to please dragon lovers everywhere.
With Great Power... edited by Lou Anders
Release Date: July 20th | Publisher: Pocket
A thrilling, unique anthology of original super hero fiction, with contributions from luminaries in both the comic book and science fiction fields. All original stories include Matthew Sturges, James Maxey, Mike Carey, Mike Baron, Gail Simone, Stephen Baxter, Chris Roberson, Peter David, Joseph Mallozzi, Mark Chadbourn, Marjorie M. Liu, Ian McDonald, & Bill Willingham should make this a must-have for Comic book and Fantasy fans everywhere.
I'm a big comic book fan and I have a feeling this will definitely be in the vein of Soon I Will Be Invincible by Austin Grossman, at least I hope some of the stories are.
Gateways edited by Elizabeth Anne Hull
Release Date: July | Publisher : TOR
It isn’t easy to get a group of bestselling SF authors to write new stories for an anthology, but that’s what Elizabeth Anne Hull has done in this powerhouse book. With original tales by Greg Bear, Gregory Benford, Ben Bova, David Brin, Cory Doctorow, Neil Gaiman, Joe Haldeman, Harry Harrison, Larry Niven, Vernor Vinge, Gene Wolfe, and others, Gateways is a SF event that will be a must-buy for SF readers of all tastes, from the traditional to the cutting edge; from the darkly serious to the laugh-out-loud funny.
These authors all were eager to contribute to this book, because they either have been influenced by or have worked with Frederik Pohl. Each author has written a story that he or she feels reflects the effect Pohl has had on the field—in the style of writing, the narrative tone, or the subject matter. It says a lot about Pohl's career that the authors represented here themselves span many decades and styles, from the experimental SF of British SF author Brian W. Aldiss to the over-the-top humor of Harry Harrison and Mike Resnick, from the darkly powerful drama of Hollywood screenwriter Frank Robinson to the satiric pungency of multiple Hugo Award-winner Vernor Vinge. Every story here is uniquely nuanced; all of them as entertaining and thought provoking as Pohl's fiction.
All though not final the contributors slated to this all reprint anthology include Stephen King, Michael Chabon, Kelly Link, Scott Westerfeld, Holly Black, Charles Stross, Natalie Babbit, Neil Gaiman, Elizabeth Bear, Charles de Lint, Sarah Zettel, and the perennial "and many more" according to my correspondence with Pratt. I have a feeling this will be up there with the anthology work John Joseph Adams has done with Night Shade.
Sympathy for the Devil collects the best short stories about His Grand Infernal Majesty, in all his forms. Could it be ... SATAN? Serpent, Tempter, Wanderer, Adversary, Dragon, Demon, Rebel. Sympathy for the Devil has them all.
Steampunk Reloaded edited by Ann & Jeff VanderMeer
Release date: September | Publisher: Tachyon
This collection is shaping up to being even better than the VandeerMeer's first steampunk outing simply titled Steampunk as it is primarily focusing on the last decade. The contents are still in the works be so far stories by Cherie Priest, Catherynne M. Valente, Daniel Abraham, Caitlin R. Kiernan, Margo Lanagan, Gail Carriger, and Jake von Slatt have all been confirmed. I actually sent Jeff an e-mail list with a few suggestions so I am hoping some make it in.
Untitled Dresden Files Short Story Collection by Jim Butcher
Release date: Fall 2010 | Publisher: Roc
Collects the majority of the already published short stories related to the Dresden Files universe as well as at least two original pieces. I'm curious whether the Thomas centric Backup will be included in the collection as Subterranean Press usually asks for a certain period of exclusivity, but next fall will mark the 2 year mark since its original release.
Phantasmagoria and Madness: Tales from the Steampunk Century edited by Jonathan Strahan & Bill Shafer
Release date: 2010 | Publisher: Subterranean Press
Famous for teasing us Sub Press hasn't released the all-original contents, but this is high on my list as Sub Press can pull in some good writers given all they've done in the Steampunk area. I have to imagine Sub Press favorite Jay Lake will be included, but we'll have to wait and see.
Star-Crossed Lovers Songs of Love and Death edited by George R.R. Martin & Gardner Dozois
Release date: 2010 | Publisher: Pocket
Described as cross-genre anthology featuring stories of romance in fantasy and Science-Fiction settings. Stories by Jim Butcher, Jo Beverly, Carrie Vaughn, M.L.N. Hanover, Cecelia Holland, Melinda M. Snodgrass, Robin Hobb, Neil Gaiman, Marjorie M. Liu, Jacqueline Carey, Lisa Tuttle, Linnea Sinclair, Mary Jo Putney, Tanith Lee, Peter S. Beagle, Yasmine Galenorn, Diana and Gabaldon.
The Butcher story is a Dresden, Carey’s from Kushiel, and Gabaldon’s from Outlander. All in all a great mix, but I’m a little surprised Martin didn’t do a story at all.