by Harry Turtledove with Martin H. Greenberg (editors)
The Best Military Science Fiction of the 20th Century
Del Ray, May, 2001.
Trade Paperback, 544 pages.
Editors Harry Turtledove and Martin H. Greenberg took on a difficult project when they decided to select the very best military SF stories of the 20th century for this anthology. The pieces they selected all certainly qualify as excellent: thirteen stories by such luminaries in the field as Philip K. Dick, Orson Scott Card, Joe W. Haldeman, Arthur C. Clark Anne McCaffrey, C.J. Cherryh, George R. R. Martin are all represented here. A unifying theme seems to be short stories which led to greater things. The short story which inspired the brilliant, novel-length form of Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card is here, as is the McCaffrey short story which started the Dragonriders of Pern phenomenon (which is really a novella). "Hero" by Joe Haldeman led to The Forever War.
The book represents older stories written in the 1950s through more recent ones, such as "Scapegoat," C.J. Cherrah's interesting tale about communication and the misunderstandings of war. While some of the stories seem a bit dated in the technological department, they nevertheless hold their appeal because of the authors' skill with characterization and imagination. This is an excellent anthology that is a must-have for fans of the military SF subgenre.
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This review was published in the July, 2001 of The Internet Writing Journal.
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