Year's Best Young Adult Speculative Fiction 2014

RIOS, Julia & . 438p. Twelfth Planet. 2015. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781922101358.
Gr 9 Up—The editors of this anthology have culled the best young adult speculative fiction short stories originally published in other anthologies and magazines, resulting in a dynamic collection by award-winning authors not widely known to American teens. Readers are advised to savor the entries, paying close attention to the complex narratives and themes. Relationships, sexuality, religion, and love are all explored here. In Margo Lanagan's "Cat Calls," a group of young people, sick of the sexual harassment they encounter on their way to school, give the lewd adults a taste of their own medicine. Kelly Link explores love, loss, and magic in the wintry "The Lady and the Fox." In Sarah Pinsker's "No Lonely Seafarer," an intersex teen is called to save an island from the sirens who threaten the ships and its sailors from passing through. In Suzanne Church's "Jelly and the D-Machine," a teenage boy travels to another dimension to "come out" to his dead father. And Payal Dhar explores free will in the non-Western, gender-bender "Memory Lace." The characters, like the authors, are diverse in their ethnicities, religions, and countries of origin. This isn't an anthology of popular works but highly sophisticated ones. These tales will be of interest to strong, sophisticated readers and specialized audiences, such as literature classes, who will find rich avenues for discussion.
VERDICT An additional purchase to round out short story collections.

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