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Editor’s Note for March-April 2020

The March/April issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction will transport you from a hair salon in Lagos to the dusty American southwest, from an alternate past to other planets in the far distant future. Which is why we chose an explorer, beautifully illustrated by Mondolithic Studios, for this month’s cover

If you’re looking for a copy of this issue, you can find F&SF in most Barnes & Noble stores beginning on Tuesday, March 3, as well as at many local independent booksellers. You can also order a single copy of this issue from our website or, if you prefer, buy an electronic copy of the issue, available worldwide and in every electronic format, from Weightless Books.

Fantasy & Science Fiction, March/April, cover by Mondolithic Studios


Some writers defy easy categorization and then some writers defy any, as you’ll find out when you read this month’s featured novella, “Come the Revolution” by Ian Tregillis. Like much of Tregillis’s fiction, this story combines elements of alternate history, hard science, and fantasy adventure with the exploration of difficult ethical questions and an unmistakable voice.

In his Alchemy Wars trilogy (The Mechanical, The Rising, and The Liberation, published by Orbit Books), Tregillis imagined an alternate version of our world where clockwork robots animated by a supernatural geas rebelled against their human masters. “Come the Revolution” takes place before the first book in the series and plants the seed of that rebellion. Readers who loved the series now have the chance to find out more about it, and readers coming to Tregillis’s world for the first time will be happy to know that there are more books to read when they finish this story.


There’s a wide selection of fantasy and dark fantasy in this issue. We start with “Kikelomo Ultrasheen” by Dare Segun Falowo, based in part on his experiences growing up in his mother’s hair salon in Nigeria. Matthew Hughes briefly departs from his ongoing adventures of Baldemar to bring us “The Last Legend,” a story originally written for Gardner Dozois’s The Book of Legends anthology. Amanda Hollander, who made her short fiction debut in our 70th Anniversary issue last year, returns to serve us “A Feast of Butterflies,” a dark fantasy about small communities and the quest for justice. And Elizabeth Bear makes us a gift of “Hacksilver,” an adventure inspired by the Icelandic sagas that we also rescued for you from Dozois’s The Book of Legends.

Our science fiction offerings start on Earth, reach into space, and take place in the far future. We start with “The Million Mile Sniper” by SL Huang, making her first appearance in F&SF, and putting her background in mathematics and firearms to good (fictional) use. We also have a trio of stories by F&SF regulars. Gregor Hartmann portrays a near future space program in “A Solitary Crane Circles Cold Mountain.” William Ledbetter imagines the survivors dealing with an alien invasion in “Hungry is the Earth.” And Brian Trent gives us an Agatha-Christie-in-space type romp of a mystery with “Death on the Nefertem Express.”

There are also some stories that we won’t bother to categorize for you, although they’re clearly speculative. Amman Sabet, who grew up in New York City, where he picked up some bad habits and never learned how to properly apologize, encourages us to “Say You’re Sorry.” We also have two very short pieces. John Possidente reviews a fictional piece of fiction titled “The Red Sword of the Celiac.” And James Patrick Kelly joins us again after too long an absence in these pages to show us “The Man I Love.”

We also have poetry by Lauren McBride and Deborah L. Davitt, columns by Charles de Lint, Elizabeth Hand, David J. Skal, Jerry Oltion, and Graham Andrews, and a bunch of cartoons.


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

Paper subscriptions are available directly from us. And electronic subscriptions are available from Amazon, AmazonUK, and Weightless Books.

71st Year of Publication


“Come the Revolution” – Ian Tregillis


“Kikelomo Ultrasheen” – Dare Segun Falowo
“The Last Legend” – Matthew Hughes
“Hacksilver” – Elizabeth Bear
“Death on the Nefertem Express” – Brian Trent


“The Million-Mile Sniper” – SL Huang
“Red Sword tf the Celiac” – John Possidente
“Say You’re Sorry” – Amman Sabet
“A Solitary Crane Circles Cold Mountain” – Gregor Hartmann
“A Feast of Butterflies” – Amanda Hollander
“Hungry Is the Earth” – William Ledbetter
“The Man I Love” – James Patrick Kelly


“To My Shipmates at Journey’s End” – Lauren McBride
“4 Vesta” – Deborah L. Davitt


Books to Look For by Charles de Lint
Books by Elizabeth Hand
Film: Wet Screams by David J. Skal
Science: Natural Disasters in Utopia by Jerry Oltion
Curiosities: Public Faces by Harold Nicolson (1932) by Graham Andrews

Cartoons by Arthur Masear, Kendra Allenby, Mark Heath, Nick Downes

Cover: By Mondolithic Studios


We hope you’ll share your thoughts about the issue with us. We can be found on:


One Response to “Editor’s Note for March-April 2020”

  1. Short Fiction Watch: New Alchemy Wars story by Ian Tregillis! – Zeno Agency Ltd. on April 30th, 2020

    […] Tregillis has a new Alchemy Wars story, COME THE REVOLUTION, in the latest issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction magazine! It’s a must-read for fans of the critically-acclaimed series. Here’s is the […]

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