Horror & Dark Fantasy

Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2017

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Podcasts

Fiction

Shiva, Open Your Eye

The human condition can be summed up in a drop of blood. Show me a teaspoon of blood and I will reveal to thee the ineffable nature of the cosmos, naked and squirming. Squirming. Funny how the truth always seems to do that when you shine a light on it.

Fiction

Doll Re Mi

Folscyvio saw the Thing in a small cramped shop off the Via Silvia. In fact, he almost passed it by. He had just come from the Laguna, climbed the forty mildewy, green-velveted steps to the Ponte Louro, and crossed over to the elevated arcades of the Nuova. Then he glanced down, and spotted Giavetti, who owed him money, creeping by below through the ancient alleys.

Fiction

Centipede Heartbeat

Each time Lisa rested her head against Joette’s breasts, she heard the centipedes. In between heartbeats there was the tiny sound of hundreds of chitinous footsteps against bone, of miniature mandibles tearing at organs. Joette refused to admit to it, or maybe she didn’t know.

Fiction

Gravitas

He stared bleary-eyed at the broken glass studding the land. This was his crop, seeded over the span of four weeks, irrigated from the residue of Napa Valley grapes, sun-kissed until it glistened like dew. It was the bounty of his desperation, and now was the time to harvest.

Fiction

Bonfires

The shore was dark when we showed up, but it would soon be blazing, and that thought was all I needed to warm me while we built the bonfires. The waves slopped in and sucked out again like black tar, and I went along the waterline with the others, pulling broken boards and snags of swollen wood out of the bubbling froth and foam, hauling it across the sand and up to the gravel where the road edge ran.

Fiction

No Breather in the World But Thee

The cook didn’t like that the eyes of the dead fish shifted to stare at him as he cut their heads off. The cook’s assistant, who was also his lover, didn’t like that he woke to find just a sack of bloody bones on the bed beside him. “It’s starting again,” he gasped, just moments before a huge, black, birdlike creature carried him off, screaming.

Fiction

The Sign in the Moonlight

You will have heard, no doubt, of the Bergenssen expedition—if only from the manner of its loss. For a short while, that tragedy was deemed significant and remarkable enough to adorn the covers of every major newspaper in the civilised world.

Fiction

Blackbirds

On an August morning in the summer of 1960, a man dressed in black shattered the kitchen window at the Peterson home.

Fiction

Cry Room

The church looked normal from the outside. All steepled and angular in the way of good, rural Indiana churches of a certain age. Red brick and stained glass, St. Thomas Aquinas, surrounded on three sides by hot asphalt parking.

Fiction

Sacred Cows

Clara Maloney peered down the long Brooklyn block. She and baby Sally had been waiting in the cold for twenty minutes, and still no sign of Pop. Figured. Even to pick out his wife’s casket, the old man was late.