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New Science Fiction & Fantasy INTERZONE ISSUE 274 OUT NOW!


23rd Feb, 2018

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Buy this issue or subscribe and get it free by using "IZ274 FREE" as your Shopper Reference during checkout.



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Abductees 1 by 2018 cover artist Vince Haig



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Beautiful Quiet of the Roaring Freeway by James Sallis

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He always wondered what their stories were. Maybe they wondered about his too.


Soul Music by Antony Johnston
illustrated by Warwick Fraser-Coombe

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The day after Jek gave her the guitar, she bought four souls from Blind Mazzy and hooked them up to compression saddles sculpted over her wings. As first experiments went, it wasn’t a complete disaster.

The guitar was a different matter.


Schrödinger's by Julie C. Day
illustrated by Richard Wagner

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Schrödinger’s Hot Little Box

A strip club doesn’t have to be female-unsettling, at least no more than anything else women go through like a step-dad with too-friendly hands, a boyfriend who calls you passable rather than pretty, or a mom who finds a way to get angry at every damn thing. That’s what Kandi and I told each other during those early days after we opened the club and started hauling in all that money. Kandi had been my best friend since I’d arrived in San Diego and landed in the room next door: two girls in a rooming house on the wrong side of San Diego’s gentrified Park West. In those first months in the city, nothing in my world seemed to make sense, not the jet fighters flying overhead, not the billowing smoke that swept up from the south, and most definitely not the way so many guys failed to tip as I twerked my hips and slipped down Little Darlings’ fireman’s pole. San Diego was supposed to be my new beginning, my liberation call.


Never the Twain by Michael Reid
illustrated by Richard Wagner 

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My mother presses the back of her hand to my cheek. It’s an unconscious habit, one not shared by the aunties who come and go from my bedside. They never touch me. They might fluff my pillow or pass me water to sip, but they won’t risk a touch that might carry the taint of my death home to their families.

“Are you sure this disease can’t be cured?” Dev­on asks.

“Not in 2018,” I tell him, returning my attention to 2681. It’s hard to know what he makes of my talk of 2018. Pancreatic cancer, the aunties, the hospital in Michigan, Earth itself – they’re as unreal to him as sphinxes and triremes are to me.


Opium for Ezra by T.R. Napper
illustrated by Martin Hanford

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“The last thing Barry said to me was: ‘I want you to keep this jar of opium and give it to Nguyen only when she needs it’.”

Nguyen was just a few feet away, yet the glimmering irises of her eyes and the orange tip 

of her cigarette were the only points visible in 

the dim interior of the tank. “Well?” she asked.

“You don’t need it,” replied Ezra.


“Well. You’re not scratching at black bugs under your skin, screaming and sweating, vomiting and pleading, for starters.”


baleen, baleen by Alexandra Renwick

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Char-char only stopped breathing for a little while, and when the others laughed afterward and said it was all all right and insisted seeing her sprawled dead on wet concrete for four full minutes going on forever hadn’t scared them shitless, Zeke joined in. But he knew they were lying through their overcaffeinated clenched-teeth grins; it did scare them shitless. Especially Zeke, because it was him who’d given Char-char the idea to get drowned in the first place.


Zen by Eliot Fintushel

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Only I can save my fellow Earthlings. The crew of our starship jerk about as if on strings, parroting and executing the aliens’ commands. Sometimes, when the Xesans have momentarily released their grip, the captain herself appears at my barred window with her bottle of zoot – who can blame her? Far better than impotent self-loathing are the raptures and crapulence of zoot.


Black Static 62 Out Now

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Black Static is published at the same time, and in the same format, as Interzone. Issue 62 contains new dark fiction by E. Catherine Tobler, Michael Wehunt, Jack Westlake, David Martin, and Kay Chronister. The cover art is by Jim Burns, and interior illustrations by Jim Burns, Ben Baldwin, and Richard Wagner. Regular features include Notes From the Borderland by Lynda E. Rucker, Into the Woods by Ralph Robert Moore, Case Notes by Peter Tennant (book reviews plus an interview with Anna Tambour), Blood Spectrum by Gary Couzens (film reviews). To take out a discounted subscription to Black Static, or Black Static + Interzone combined, please visit this website's shop.

Potential subscribers outside the UK should note that six issues of 12-issue subscriptions have absolutely no postage added: you'll pay exactly the same as a UK subscriber.

New subscribers can get this issue free by using "BS62 FREE" as your Shopper's Reference during checkout. The same offer applies to Interzone (use "IZ274 FREE") and a dual subscription to both magazines (use "IZ274 + BS62 FREE").



Guest Editorial
Antony Johnston

Do influences really matter?


Future Interrupted: Infinite Diversity in Repressive Combinations
Jonathan McCalmont

Future Interrupted began in the shadow of Paul Kincaid’s wonderful 2012 essay ‘The Widening Gyre’. Published in the LA Review of Books, Kincaid’s piece surveyed a number of Year’s Best short fiction anthologies and concluded that “The overwhelming sense one gets (…) is exhaustion”. Kincaid’s essay remains a brilliant exploration of a culture teetering on the brink of economic and creative collapse but we are no longer living in 2012… This is the future and our narrative must yield to the overwhelming pressures of reality.

Jonathan's final column for Interzone.


Time Pieces: The Gernsback Conundrum
Nina Allan

I began writing this column just as the Hugo nominations opened for another year. Which started me thinking, not only about what might get nominated or what hitherto unforeseen scandal might rock the awards for the umpteenth year running, but also about the man for whom the Hugos are named: Hugo Gernsback, famously dubbed the ‘father of science fiction’ and considered by many within fandom (especially US fandom) to be the man who invented science fiction in the first place.


Ansible Link
David Langford

News, obituaries.



Book Zone
Maureen Kincaid Speller, Andy Hedgecock, John Howard, Ian Hunter, Duncan Lunan, Jack Deighton, Lawrence Osborn, Stephen Theaker, Ian Sales, Elaine Gallagher

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Books reviewed include Blackfish City by Sam J. Miller (plus interview conducted by Maureen Kincaid Speller), Mad Hatters and March Hares edited by Ellen Datlow, Science Fiction: A Literary History edited by Roger Luckhurst, The Queen of All Crows by Rod Duncan, Embers of War by Gareth L. Powell, Paris Adrift by E.J. Swift, Dark State by Charles Stross, Blood Binds the Pack by Alex Wells, The Smoke by Simon Ings, Improbable Botany edited by Gary Dalkin


Mutant Popcorn
Nick Lowe

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Films reviewed include The Shape of Water, Black Panther, Coco, Maze Runner: The Death Cure, Attraction, Jupiter's Moon, Downsizing


How To Buy Interzone

Interzone is available in good shops in the UK and many other countries around the world, including the USA where it is stocked by Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million and elsewhere. If your local store (in any country) doesn't stock the magazine they should easily be able to order it for you so please don't hesitate to ask them. You can also buy the magazine from a variety of online retailers, or a version for e-readers from places like Weightless Books, Amazon, Apple, Smashwords, etc.

The best thing though is to follow any of the Shop/Buy Now/Subscribe links on this website and buy this new issue (scroll down to the bottom of the Shop), or better still take out a subscription (at the top of the Shop), direct with us. You'll receive issues much cheaper and much quicker, and the magazine will receive a much higher percentage of the revenue.

Potential subscribers outside the UK should note that six issues of 12-issue subscriptions have absolutely no postage added: you'll pay exactly the same as a UK subscriber.

SPECIAL OFFER: New subscribers can get this issue free by using "IZ274 FREE" as their Shopper's Reference during checkout.


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The Teardrop Method by Simon Avery

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Interzone readers will be interested to know that TTA Novella 4, The Teardrop Method by Simon Avery, is out now as a B-Format paperback with wraparound cover art by Richard Wagner and bonus connected short story. You can buy it now from this website's shop.

"The Teardrop Method is a story about stories; a beautiful novella about love and loss and the connections people make and then sometimes break. It's quiet, haunting, and ultimately moving" Gary McMahon

"Nightmare plotting infused with an aching mitteleuropäische sadness, Simon Avery’s tale of music and mortality could be the novelisation of a lost Argento movie" Nicholas Royle

"Without any prep or background, I started reading the novella The Teardrop Method by British author Simon Avery, and was immediately engaged by the moodiness, the bleakness, the desperation and creaky, world-weariness of the setting and characters. These appealing elements perfectly coalesced into a tragic and fervent eulogy to the creative process - to Art with a capital A - as a means of salvation and transcendence and doom, and to love itself in all its complex iterations, exploring the concept of loving, dying, and even killing, in order to achieve the proper reception code from the eternal Muse while the roaring Danube drowns out the rest of the world. This is a very European story, in all its faded baroque finery and cafe claustrophobia. The snow is heavier here, the dawn ever more surprising. The supernatural and the natural are not so far removed in places like this. The old and the new forever caught in a twirling waltz. I highly recommend this novella, and cannot wait to see what melody Mr Avery pens next. I'll be listening" T.E. Grau

"A monumentally haunting novella" Des Lewis

“Simon Avery’s descriptions of Krysztina’s music makes me want to hear it. It’s a subtle and beautifully told tale with echoes of European film-makers like Haneke and Kieslowski, as well as their predecessors like Franju and Polanski. It conjures a powerful sense of foreboding that reminds me of Roeg’s Don’t Look Now, and shares with that film a sense of being haunted. It has moments of profound sadness and yet still managed to surprise me with its uplifting ending. One of the novellas of the year” Mike O'Driscoll

“Majestic and compelling throughout, The Teardrop Method is an exemplary specimen of a standout novella. It’s beautifully written, excellently produced, and a sign of publisher TTA Press at the top of their game” Gareth Jones, Dread Central

"I can honestly say that Simon Avery's The Teardrop Method is one of the finest and most fascinating novellas I've ever had the pleasure of reading. I highly recommend this novella to speculative fiction readers, because it's a beautiful and subtly complex exploration of death, love, loss and how to recover from a tragedy. Its darkly beautiful atmosphere and delicate story will captivate everyone who appreciates quiet horror" Rising Shadow

"The Teardrop Method is a complex, intricately structured piece of dark fiction, or perhaps quite horror. It is a story about the weaving of stories, about the transmutation of the darkest personal grief into art, and about the coming to terms with the inevitability of death. As a key line puts it – Art leads you back to the person you were after the world took you away from yourself" Gary Dalkin, Amazing Stories

"Simon Avery’s prose is spare and masterly, and certainly the equal of any Booker Prize nominee I’ve ever read. As much goes on between the lines as on them. The interstitial dark spaces are filled with horrors and a creeping unease that drags the reader in and won’t let go. The characterisation and storytelling, too, are brilliant" John Dodds, Amazing Stories

"This highly original piece is written with the sad, chilly atmosphere of much central European fiction but it has a very British rejection of miserabilism for its own sake. The desire for even the most fantastical stories to make sense and to make progress keeps breaking through and the result is a charming, and charmingly odd, novella which stays in the mind like an overheard song" Mat Coward, Morning Star

"Avery's story is a dark and tense thriller, set against a cold Hungarian back drop. The reconnection between father and daughter gives The Teardrop Method melancholy in light of the father's declining health, and the handling of the supernatural element is done so latently it feels authentic and hence, genuinely spooky. The prose here is compulsively readable and even the stranger members of the cast pop off the page" Nick Cato, The Horror Fiction Review


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