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Editor’s Note for July/Aug 2016

The July/August issue of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction is now on sale! You can order a single copy from our website or buy an electronic edition from Amazon or AmazonUK. Or just subscribe now and never miss another issue!

This is the 726th issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction.

Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/Aug 2016, cover by Mondolithic StudiosMondolithic Studios, the team of Kenn Brown and Chris Wren, provided this month’s cover, which illustrates Gregor Hartmann’s story “Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful.” To see more work by this talented pair, visit their website at


Gregor Hartmann’s last cover story for F&SF appeared in our August 1991 issue for his fantasy tale, “Henry in the Trees.” After that one appeared, he took a short — well, for some, two decades is short — hiatus from writing to pursue his career as a translator of scientific patents. That knowledge and expertise shines in this new story, which is about both unexpected discoveries and unintended consequences.


This issue includes another anniversary story: 45 years ago, in our August 1971 issue, F&SF published “Born to Exile,” the first professional story with Phyllis Eisenstein’s solo byline. The story introduced Alaric the Minstrel, who has since appeared in two novels and numerous stories, many of them in these pages, making this the longest running series by a single author in F&SF’s history. Eisenstein’s new Alaric adventure includes fresh revelations about his world and character that shows there are still new twists for this familiar figure.

Other writers returning to our pages in this issue include Oliver Buckram, with “An Open Letter to the Person Who Took My Smoothie from the Break Room Fridge,” a story that shows how true evil arises from petty impulses as much as grand plans; Bruce McAllister, with “Killer,” a short piece that revisits his world where angels have appeared in Central Park; and David Prill, whose “Vishnu Summer” will evoke the smell of cut grass and the sound of county fair calliopes as it takes you on an unexpected journey.

We also introduce several new writers to the pages of F&SF. It includes a couple fantasy stories: Dominica Phetteplace makes her first appearance with “Spells Are Easy If You Have the Right Psychic Energy” and Betsy Philips joins us with her semi-autobiographical tale, “Jesus Has Forgiven Me, Why Can’t You?” K. B. Rylander brings us a science fiction story, “Last One Out” — there’s more on that below. And this month’s novella is an alternate history, “The Vanishing Kind,” by World Fantasy Award winner Lavie Tidhar. A Man Lies Dreaming, Tidhar’s noir novel about Nazis and British fascists, was published in the US in March to wide critical and popular acclaim. He tells us that the idea for “The Vanishing Kind” came to him shortly after he finished writing that novel. Both stories make their way like spies through the sordid, shadowed streets of a London that might have been.

Along with the fiction we have “Martian Garden,” a poem by John Philip Johnson, and “The London-Ehrenreich School of Applied Textual Fortitude,” a new Plumage From Pegasus piece by Paul Di Filippo. This issue closes with “The Thing on the Shelf,” a novelet by reader favorite David Gerrold. Be sure to read the Coming Attractions at the end of that story for an important announcement.


We promised you more. Every issue features one story that we also offer for download online, via our free electronic digest for Kindle. (The UK version is available here.) This month’s free story — which you can also find in the print edition — is “Last One Out” by K. B. Rylander. The Last Man On Earth is a classic science fiction trope given a fresh twist in K. B. Rylander’s first story in print.

Even if you don’t subscribe to the magazine – and why don’t you? – you can click on this link and read Rylander’s story and all the columns in the issue for free.


Charles de Lint reviews new books by Patricia McKillip, Carolyne Larrington, Lev Grossman, Diana Pavlac Glyer, and Melissa F. Olson. James Sallis considers new short story collections by James Morrow, Mary Rickert, and Jeffrey Ford. Kathi Maio offers insights into three films, “10 Cloverfield Lane,” “Eye in the Sky,” and “Zootopia.” In our science column, Pat Murphy and Paul Doherty look at “Our Super Cool Solar System.” And for our Curiosities column, Robert Eldridge presents Star of the Unborn (1945) by Franz Werfel, the German exile’s posthumous science fiction novel.


After you read the issue, or even part of it, we hope you’ll share your thoughts with us. We can be found on:

In the meantime… enjoy!

C.C. Finlay, Editor
Fantasy & Science Fiction | @fandsf


2 Responses to “Editor’s Note for July/Aug 2016”

  1. The Issue is Here! | Tiny Cat Pants on July 1st, 2016

    […] If you want your very own copy of F&SF, here are the details! […]

  2. F&SF, July 1979 | Protocol 7 on July 22nd, 2016

    […] Next up is “The Mountain Fastness” by Phyllis Eisenstein, a tale of Alaric the Minstrel and the first new one to follow Born To Exile. (There’s a brand new Alaric story in the July/Aug F&SF – check it out.) […]

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