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New Science Fiction & Fantasy 2023 BRITISH FANTASY AWARD WINNER


18th Jun, 2021


Item image: Interzone 290-291 Double Issue

The wraparound cover art is 'The Street of Our Lady of the Fields' by Vincent Sammy



A Hollow in the Sky by Alexander Glass
illustrated by Jim Burns 

Item image: A Hollow in the Sky

Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)
Walt Whitman, ‘Song of Myself’

1. The Vespiary

The wasps were restless. Brother Mateo knelt down by one of the colonies – the one nearest the orchard, in the shadow of the monastery wall – and tried to understand what might have disturbed them. He wore no mask or gauntlet, only the storm-hued habit of his order, but the wasps let him be. They did not feel threatened, then. And yet the colony was singing, the keen plainsong of the vespiary.


The Andraiad by Tim Major
illustrated by Vince Haig

Item image: The Andraiad

A machine working a machine.

Throughout the hymn, Martin relished this sensation, all the time visualising the enmeshing of well-oiled cogs. His fingers marching across the dual keyboards, his feet upon the treadles or working the swell. The tone from each pipe above him acted as an urgent call, directing the congregation. What he lacked in gentleness, he made up for with precision.


Pace Car by Lyle Hopwood

Item image: Pace Car 

The road ended abruptly just beyond the turnout and I set the Mustang’s parking brake with care. I eased myself out of the stifling car and walked a few steps to the edge where the road started again, fifteen feet lower down the parched hillside where the earthquake had dumped it more than ten years ago. There’s a palm tree down there that had landed on its side as the falling road twisted and flexed. About thirty feet of it was horizontal. After it landed it started to grow straight up again, and the heavy mass of green fronds was now almost level with the old road. No wonder the asphalt was split and dry here at the dead end, after lying more than a decade unrepaired in the Southern California sunshine.


An Island for Lost Astronauts by Daniel Bennett

Item image: An Island for Lost Astronauts

The astronauts moved amongst us like captive angels. They wandered the islands of Rivertown, rootless and distracted, their movements snared by the effortless logic of gravity. As we fought for daily life on the outskirts of East City, the astronauts tuned through our hapless suffering, their expressions beatific, deranged and bereft. They rarely looked at the sky.


A Stray Cat in the Mountain of the Dead by Cécile Cristofari
illustrated by Richard Wagner

Item image: A Stray Cat in the Mountain of the Dead 

Time dilates in the summer heat, or maybe I can’t get used to how slow I have been lately. As I rush around the corner, panting, the bus stop in sight at last, a new message from Anthony pops on my phone. Hey sexy. Just wanted to know how things are going in Narayama…


Nemesis by Matt Thompson
illustrated by Dave Senecal

Item image: Nemesis 

The sedatives were taking longer than usual to kick in today. Hari leaned her head against the cool glass of Dr Venoia’s treatment room window, trying to empty her mind the way he always asked her to. It wasn’t proving easy. Stray thoughts flitted and darted, refusing to coalesce into anything she could grasp onto. Not for the first time, she wondered whether she was doing the right thing by being here at all.


The Mischielf that is Past by John Possidente

Item image: The Mischief that is Past

Dateline: Humboldt Station, GEO
Journalist’s Journal Entry #176 (No Headline)
ID: Debin, CEJ#220377 (Susp.)

I shouldn’t say where I’ve been today – that’s not what the smart journalists do when they’re in hiding – but the heartbreaking smells of espresso and bacon from Mollie’s Diner pervaded the space. That’s a clue to where I was, but by the time anyone reads this (if anyone ever reads this) it won’t matter. I moved on before my stomach could give me away. I can’t float in one place for long. Fugitives don’t do that.


The Egg Collectors by Lavie Tidhar
illustrated by Ev Shipard 

Item image: The Egg Collectors

On the last of the nights of Ashour, the wild ballooners of Isfiya ran into an ice-storm over the north pole.

The storm looked like a giant eye against the sky. Ice whipped the fragile balloons and set them blowing apart from each other, scattering like seeds over the lunar surface. Titan, with Saturn hidden in the sky – a long way from the sun.


Without Lungs or Limbs to Stay by Shauna O'Meara
illustrated by Richard Wagner 

Item image: Without Lungs or Limbs to Stay

She is not the first biologist we have recycled for her nutrients, but she is the first to specialise in the sea. I stroke the condensate from her cryo-pod and look down at her torpid form. She is bird-boned and insubstantial, her pale skin reefed with the tubes, power-packs and electrical pads meant to bring about her resurrection; it always makes me sad to see them, knowing they will go unused. A small, silver rectangle at the toe of her case says Doctor Chrissa Conway and a string of letters that have lost their meaning. It makes me sad to see that too.



Guest Editorial
Lavie Tidhar


Climbing Stories (1): Glass Case Futures
Climbing Stories (2): Joining Dots, Real or Otherwise
Aliya Whiteley

Ansible Link
David Langford



Book Zone
Maureen Kincaid Speller, Duncan Lawie, Val Nolan, John Howard, Stephen Theaker, Jack Deighton 

Reviews of books by Aliya Whiteley, John Brunner, Ian Macpherson, M. John Harrison, David Ebenbach, Premee Mohamed, Martha Wells, Gautum Bhatia, Nial Bourke


Mutant Popcorn
Nick Lowe

Films reviewed include Little Fish, Songbird, Infinitum: Subject Unknown, Palm Springs, Zack Snyder's Justice League, Wonder Woman 1984, Thunder Force, Superintelligence, The Mitchells vs. The Machines, Greenland, The Midnight Sky, Stowaway, Chaos Walking, The Craft: Legacy, Mortal Kombat, Goszilla vs. Kong, Raya and the Last Dragon, Soul, Come Away


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