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We See a Different Frontier: A postcolonial…
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We See a Different Frontier: A postcolonial speculative fiction anthology

by Fabio Fernandes (Editor), Djibril al-Ayad (Editor)

Other authors: Aliette de Bodard (Preface), Joyce Chng (Contributor), Ernest Hogan (Contributor), Rahul Kanakia (Contributor), Rochita Loenen-Ruiz (Contributor)12 more, Sandra McDonald (Contributor), Sunny Moraine (Contributor), Silvia Moreno-Garcia (Contributor), Gabirel Murray (Contributor), Shweta Narayan (Contributor), Dinesh Rao (Contributor), N.A. Ratnayake (Contributor), Sofia Samatar (Contributor), Ekaterina Sedia (Afterword), Benjanun Sriduangkaew (Contributor), Lavie Tidhar (Contributor), J.Y. Yang (Contributor)

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This is an excellent anthology, one worth reading. Its stories explore the aftereffects of colonialism (in its broadest sense) from a variety of perspectives and concerns, and they generally do so quite effectively. Some of the stories here are very good, some are ok, a few didn't resonate with me at all, but almost universally these stories take on some aspect of the theme from a unique perspective. The anthology sustains unity of theme throughout without being too uniform (or too heavy-handed, for the most part). (I should note the preface and afterword are also quite worth reading.) The end result is to create a whole that, to use a cliché, is more than the sum of its parts. Which is to say that this collections's excellence rests not so much on the quality of the stories in it but rather on what the collection achieves in its totality.

Which is not to put down the stories themselves! "A Heap of Broken Images" by Sunny Moraine was especially worth reading; it is profound and thought-provoking. "Them Ships" by Silvia Moreno-Garcia and "Remembering Turinam" by N.A. Ratnayake are also in the thought-provoking category. "A Bridge of Words" by Dinesh Rao is quite a good story, and one of the most traditionally science-fictional story of the lot. "Dark Continents" by Lavie Tidhar is the least traditional of the stories, jumping between times and timelines, but it has in it some interesting what-ifs. I did not, as I said, like every story here, but some of that might be a matter of taste, and certainly I think the best stories more than make up for the weakest.

But whatever the artistic merits of this anthology, I think its social value is much greater. The effects of colonialism are not only worth discussing, they need to be discussed. That We See a Different Frontier explores this topic, and is so effective in doing so, is to be commended. I certainly found my thinking challenged and stretched by reading it, and sometimes, I was even uncomfortable. But I think that just demonstrates how effective this anthology truly is. ( )
  benmartin79 | Mar 7, 2014 |
...We See a Different Frontier is a fascinating piece of reading. It tackles a theme that is so hugely complex that there are countless of ways to approach it and the stories the editors reflect that. The diversity in these stories is stunning. The anthology offers no easy answers but makes the reader aware of issues that are rarely raised in science fiction. In her afterword Ekaterina Sedia mentions that the collection left her 'a bit whiplashed' and that is not far from how I experienced it. These stories are challenging and thought-provoking, qualities that good speculative fiction in my opinion needs to possess, but at the same time they manage to cover ground most readers of the genre will be unfamiliar with. This anthology is one of the best themed anthologies I've had the pleasure of reading. It deserves a larger audience than it is likely to get.

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1 vote Valashain | Aug 25, 2013 |
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Fernandes, FabioEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
al-Ayad, DjibrilEditormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Bodard, Aliette dePrefacesecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Chng, JoyceContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hogan, ErnestContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kanakia, RahulContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Loenen-Ruiz, RochitaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McDonald, SandraContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Moraine, SunnyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Moreno-Garcia, SilviaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Murray, GabirelContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Narayan, ShwetaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Rao, DineshContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ratnayake, N.A.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Samatar, SofiaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sedia, EkaterinaAfterwordsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sriduangkaew, BenjanunContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tidhar, LavieContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Yang, J.Y.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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