Welcome to the weird!
Acclaimed author and editor Laird Barron, one of weird fiction’s brightest exponents, brings his expert eye and editorial sense to the inaugural volume of the Year’s Best Weird Fiction. No longer the purview of esoteric readers, weird fiction is enjoying wide popularity.
Chiefly derived from early 20th-century pulp fiction, its remit includes ghost stories, the strange and macabre, the supernatural, fantasy, myth, philosophical ontology, ambiguity, and a healthy helping of the outré.
At its best, weird fiction is an intersecting of themes and ideas that explore and subvert the Laws of Nature. It is not confined to one genre, but is the most diverse and welcoming of all genres. Hence, in this initial showcase of weird fiction you will discover tales of horror, fantasy, science fiction, the supernatural, and the macabre. Contributing authors include Jeffrey Ford, Sofia Samatar, Joseph S. Pulver Sr., John Langan, Richard Gavin, and W. H. Pugmire.
Praise for Laird Barron & Michael Kelly
‘With this crowdfunded volume, series editor Kelly (Gods and Monsters) and guest editor Barron (The Beautiful Thing That Awaits Us All) launch a promising and necessary showcase for alien and unclassifiable works. Supporting Kelly’s definition of weird fiction as “a mode of literature that is present in other genres,” these 22 vivid stories offer thrills from many directions: the boot-camp dystopia of Chen Qiufan, the futuristic steampunk of John R. Fultz, the fevered prose poetry of Joseph S. Pulver Sr., and the family apocalypses of Livia Llewellyn. Among such strong company, special standouts include A.C. Wise’s gloriously queer pulp homage “Dr. Blood and the Ultra Fabulous Glitter Squadron,” Maria Dahvana Headley’s densely mythic, non-binary “The Krakatoan,” and Sofia Samatar’s superb, biographical “Olimpia’s Ghost,” which is evocatively reminiscent of Angela Carter. Barron and Kelly amploy prove that weird fiction can fill an anthology with delightful and surprising stories.’
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)