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Publisher: INFINIVOX

Publication Date: 2020

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The 2020 Look at Space Opera Book

edited by Allan Kaster

This collection highlights 20 stellar space operas published over the past 20 years by top-notch authors of the science fiction genre.


  • “Mayflower II” by Stephen Baxter — One thousand people, aboard five generation starships, leave the Sol system to flee an enemy that threatens to destroy their way of life.

  • “On the Orion Line” also by Stephen Baxter — A soldier fights for survival behind enemy lines, on an alien vessel, thousands of light-years from Earth.

  • “Boojum” by Elizabeth Bear & Sarah Monette — Space pirates haul in booty aboard a living spaceship that doesn’t quite smell right.

  • “By the Warmth of Their Calculus” by Tobias S. Buckell — The captain of a dustship musters her crew to escape from a trap set by Hunter-Killers in a game of cat and mouse amid the rings of a giant planet.

  • “Weep for Day” by Indrapramit Das — A woman recalls a childhood train journey, on a planet with a permanent dayside and a nightside of eternal darkness, to see a captured specimen of the Nightmare race.

  • “Glory” by Greg Egan — Mathematicians seek to learn more from a civilization, on another planet, that spent three million years doing math.

  • “The Ice Owl” by Carolyn Ives Gilman — An alienated teenager, in a domed iron city on a planet where a fundamentalist revolt is brewing, seeks to uncover her enigmatic tutor’s long-held secret.

  • “Saving Tiamaat” by Gwyneth Jones — Human diplomats must deal their own cultural biases while dealing with two representatives from warring factions on a newly discovered planet.

  • “Someday” by James Patrick Kelly — Peculiar mating rituals and divergent evolution have developed on a lost colony that has been out of contact with the rest of humanity.

  • “Jonas and the Fox” by Rich Larson — An enemy of the revolution, on a colonized planet, uploads a digital copy of himself into the body of a braindead boy in an attempt to escape off-world.

  • “Extracurricular Activities” by Yoon Ha Lee — Set in the author’s Machineries of Empire universe, an undercover agent infiltrates a space station to recover the crew of a lost ship.

  • “City of the Dead,” by Paul McAuley — The constable in a settlement on a planet full of the tombs of a long-vanished alien race befriends a woman who researches dangerous hive rats.

  • “Dead Men Walking” also by Paul McAuley — Programmed military doppelgängers continue to carry out their missions long after the Quiet War’s end.

  • “Botanica Veneris: Thirteen Papercuts by Ida Countess Rathagan” by Ian McDonald — An aristocrat’s trip to Venus, in search of her disgraced brother, is memorialized by papercuts of flora native to the planet.

  • “The Third Party” by David Moles — Two rival space-faring cultures vie for influence over the people of a forgotten human world.

  • “The Hero” by Karl Schroeder — A dying young man on a treasure hunt tries to save a world that’s devoid of gravity and lit by artificial suns.

  • “Bright Red Star” by Bud Sparhawk — Modified combat troops must deal with recalcitrant settlers on a planet being attacked by hostile aliens.

  • “The Days Between” by Allen M. Steele — A man aboard a ship in deep space wakes up from biostasis at the wrong time.

  • “Slow Life” by Michael Swanwick — An astronaut in a damaged balloon struggles to survive 800 meters above the surface of a sea on Titan.

  • “The Island” by Peter Watts — An eternal, aboard a slower than light ship, is woken to investigate an unexplained signal emanating from the area of the ship’s next stargate construction site.

Paperback Book

509 pages


6 x 1.28 x 9 inches




1.65 pounds

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