Horror & Dark Fantasy

Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2017

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Nov. 2017 (Issue 62)

We have original fiction from Will Ludwigsen (“The Zodiac Walks on the Moon”) and Karin Lowachee (“The Summer Mask”), along with reprints by Molly Tanzer (“Mysterium Tremendum”) and Jayaprakash Satyamurthy (“My Saints Are Down”). In the latest installment of our column on horror, “The H Word,” author Emily Suvada chews on the nature of cannibalism. We’ve also got author spotlights with our authors and our quarterly book review column from Terence Taylor.

In This Issue: Nov. 2017 (Issue 62)

Editorial

Editorial: November 2017

Be sure to read the Editorial for a run-down of this month’s content and to keep up with all our news and updates.

Fiction

The Zodiac Walks on the Moon

This is the murderer of the two teenagers last Christmass on Lake Herman Road and the girl a few weeks ago in Vallejo. I phoned a lady dispatcher at the Vallejo Police Department, but she didn’t take me seriously. So as not to risk that now, I shall reveal the following details not available to the public:
1. The brand name of the ammunition for the Christmass killing was Super X. I fired ten shots, leaving the boy on his back with his feet to the car and the girl on her right side and her feet to the west.

Author Spotlight

Fiction

Mysterium Tremendum

May first came, and it was still snowing. Marjorie Olenthiste was sick of it, of the storms that kept blanketing Arkham in identical, endless, silent white drifts; of needing to change her shoes after trudging through the resulting slush to the university library every morning; of woolen coats and hats and woolen scarves and gloves and woolen skirts and woolen underwear and wool in general. That afternoon, when the flowing white clouds again clotted into dreary leaden masses, and the first flurries began swirling down, she found herself musing on whether it was ever going to stop snowing.

Nonfiction

The H Word: Food for Thought

I haven’t eaten meat since I was eleven. I was the only vegetarian in my school, in a little farming town where the largest employer was the local slaughterhouse. It wasn’t an easy decision to swim against that overwhelming social current, but it’s one from which I have never since retreated. Looking back, I see a willful child stretching for individuality and control over her life, but I think that even then I understood what I do now: that on a fundamental level, what we choose to eat defines us.

Fiction

The Summer Mask

I met you in the summer when the butterflies began to dance. You were missing your nose, your right eye, and the top of your lips. Some of your teeth. It made conversation a sort of whistle. The war had taken half of your face. It had burned your skull into spotted pink and black, like the underbelly of some amphibious creature. Before the war you were classically beautiful, with classic emerald eyes and a classic strong jaw and classic full lips, but none of these descriptions do you justice. I want to say you were perfect, but it was the imperfections that made you so.

Author Spotlight

Fiction

My Saints Are Down

It was just a place I had heard of, a seaside honey pot, a trap snaring tourists and locals alike in a joyless phantasmagoria of picture-postcard tableaux, narcotic stupors, terpsichorean excesses and paper-thin multiculturalism. Goa did not, at any point, seem like a place I wanted to visit; besides, I preferred the mountains, or even hills, to the seaside. What I’d never thought about was its hybrid heritage, the many strands that entwined to make up the fabric of this strange, sunny province.

Nonfiction

Book Review: November 2017

This month, Terence Taylor reviews two novels that explore the meaning of family: Ruthanna Emrys’ Winter Tide and Steven Barnes’ Twelve Days.