A People's Future of the United States
What if America's founding ideals finally became reality? A future of peace, justice, and love comes to life in original speculative stories that challenge oppression and embrace inclusiveness--from N. K. Jemisin, Charles Yu, Jamie Ford, and more.For many Americans, imagining a bright future has always been an act of resistance. A People's Future of the United States presents twenty-five never-before-published stories by a diverse group of writers, featuring voices both new and well-established. These stories imagine their characters fighting everything from government surveillance, to corporate cities, to climate change disasters, to nuclear wars. But fear not: A People's Future also invites readers into visionary futures in which the country is shaped by justice, equity, and joy.Edited by Victor LaValle and John Joseph Adams, this collection features a glittering landscape of moving, visionary stories written from the perspective of people of color, indigenous writers, women, queer & trans people, Muslims and other people whose lives are often at risk.Contributors include: Violet Allen, Charlie Jane Anders, Ashok K. Banker, Tobias S. Buckell, Tananarive Due, Omar El Akkad, Jamie Ford, Maria Dahvana Headley, Hugh Howey, Lizz Huerta, Justina Ireland, N. K. Jemisin, Alice Sola Kim, Seanan McGuire, Sam J. Miller, Daniel José Older, Malka Older, Gabby Rivera, A. Merc Rustad, Kai Cheng Thom, Catherynne M. Valente, Daniel H. Wilson, G. Willow Wilson, and Charles Yu.

A People's Future of the United States Details

TitleA People's Future of the United States
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseFeb 5th, 2019
PublisherOne World
ISBN-139780525508809
Rating
GenreShort Stories, Fiction, Science Fiction, Anthologies, Speculative Fiction, Fantasy

A People's Future of the United States Review

  • Jamie
    January 1, 1970
    There are certain collections of speculative fiction that are tattooed on my brain. Dangerous Visions, edited by Harlan Ellison, and Futures on Fire, edited by Orson Scott Card, in particular.This one now joins that gallery of mind-bending, imagination-stretching stories, but there's something soul-soothing about these tales as well. Something sublime, yet hopeful.My favorites were the stories by N.K. Jemisin, Ashok Banker, and Charlie Jane Anders. Full disclosure: I have a story in here too, bu There are certain collections of speculative fiction that are tattooed on my brain. Dangerous Visions, edited by Harlan Ellison, and Futures on Fire, edited by Orson Scott Card, in particular.This one now joins that gallery of mind-bending, imagination-stretching stories, but there's something soul-soothing about these tales as well. Something sublime, yet hopeful.My favorites were the stories by N.K. Jemisin, Ashok Banker, and Charlie Jane Anders. Full disclosure: I have a story in here too, but I'm just swimming in the wake of the above mentioned authors.
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  • Sahitya
    January 1, 1970
    This anthology boasts of some amazing authors and I just couldn't resist from requesting it as soon as I heard about it the first time. And what a thought provoking, sometimes infuriating and sometimes hopeful collection of stories this is. Right from the Foreword by Victor LaValle, we get an insight into how powerful representation is, how important it is to fight for the rights of the marginalized and and resistance can start from even just one person. These stories will move you, make you ang This anthology boasts of some amazing authors and I just couldn't resist from requesting it as soon as I heard about it the first time. And what a thought provoking, sometimes infuriating and sometimes hopeful collection of stories this is. Right from the Foreword by Victor LaValle, we get an insight into how powerful representation is, how important it is to fight for the rights of the marginalized and and resistance can start from even just one person. These stories will move you, make you angry and tear up, will terrify you and will probably light a fire under all of us to fight for everyone's rights in our own way so that we don't let many of these dystopian futures become possible.As with any short story anthology, there are some brilliant tales here and some which I didn't understand, but someone else might find them relevant. The book didn't start off strong for me, but the middle portion has some of my favorites including the ones by Ashok Banker, Omar El Akkad, Justina Ireland, Gabby Rivera and a few others. I would recommend this to anyone and everyone, this is an important book and I promise that you will find something in it that will resonate with you.Below are my reviews for the individual stories: The Bookstore at the end of America - Charlie Jane Anders This story features an America where California is now a separate country with the former being a very religious, probably fascist place while the latter feels like a technocracy. During the time when wars break out for the sake of water resources, Molly still tries to maintain her bookstore at the border catering to both regions, and trying very hard to toe the middle ground for the sake of her daughter. This is a story about the power of books (both good ones and the propaganda) and how a good discussion about books might just quiet a heated argument between angry people on both sides.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5 Our Aim is Not to Die - A. Merc Rustad This world scared the hell out of me because anyone who is not the “Ideal” (straight, white, male) is discriminated against or being autistic and non-binary like our MC is literally illegal and people have to perform daily approved actions to prove their patriotism. Sua’s horrible predicament is captured so realistically that it terrified me too and the worst part is that this world seemed entirely plausible.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Wall - Lizz Huerta This story feels like a metaphor to the wall that our politicians so want to build at the southern border and what consequences it might lead to. Although I’m not sure I understood the world here.Rating: ⭐️⭐️.5 Read after Burning - Maria Dahvana Headley Another story about the power of words and books but I think it was too meta for me to understand.Rating: ⭐️ Disruption and Continuity - Malka Older This is sort of like a report written in the future about activism and it’s affect on society, especially after it’s realized that the political system is ineffective. I thought the format this is written in was inventive, but I was also slightly confused.Rating: ⭐️⭐️.5 It was Saturday Night, I Guess that Makes it Alright - Sam J. Miller This is a story about powerlessness and trying to free ourselves from it and desiring to do more, to resist, to take back some power.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Attachment Disorder - Tananarive Due A story about a mother wanting to protect her child, while trying to remain unattached. It’s heartbreaking to see a mother having to choose between life in a cage but with protection vs freedom that might not keep them alive long. I thought this struggle was depicted in a very gut wrenching manner.Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️.5 By his Bootstraps - Ashok K. Banker This story is pure wish fulfillment for every single person who is fed up with the current government’s preposterous antics. I won’t say anything except just go and read this one.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Riverbed - Omar El Akkad A woman returns to the US almost half a century later after she suffered through imprisonment in Muslim internment camps. This story realistically depicts how survivors must actually feel when they see monuments and memorials erected at the places where they suffered so much injustices, while the attitudes of the people haven’t changed much. This is another story where the world seemed entirely plausible and too damn scary.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ What Maya Found There - Daniel José Older I was surprised to see the current administration referenced here. The story of a future where bioengineering projects are being used for create the President’s private army and how some scientists are trying to stop them. Definitely depicts the dichotomy of a government that only believes in the science that’s useful for their purposes.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Referendum - Lesley Nneka Arimah Another scary world where all Black people have been designated wards of state, millions deported and a referendum on the ballot to reestablish slavery. And the small steps that led to this state are described which seem quite possible in our near future and it terrified me. However, there is Black Resistance and that means, there is hope. Very well written from the perspective of a mother and wife, struggling with her choices and trying to do her part.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5 Calendar Girls - Justina Ireland A Handmaid’s Tale-esque America where abortion/contraception is outlawed, marriage age is as low as 12 for girls and women’s rights activists are considered terrorists. In a very unlikely turn of events, the senator responsible for all the “moral” laws needs a contraband contraceptive selling woman to help his teenage daughter get an abortion. It just shows that just like the present day, men who make laws to police women’s bodies never want the same to be applied to their own.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Synapse Will Free Us From Ourselves - Violet Allen This story features a very high tech version of a gay conversion therapy institute, where the subjects are made to feel shame and hate themselves without knowing why, so that they will stop living out and proud. The way it’s described is chilling because it’s quite similar to the rhetoric we hear even now - “we don’t have a problem with gay people, just their lifestyle choices.” - and it just shows however much support people show outside, changing discriminatory attitudes is not easy.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ O.1 - Gabby Rivera The plague called Imbalance wiped out more than 40% of the population and made many others infertile - but this bacterium only affected those people full of white supremacist and capitalist greed. This story follows a queer couple of color, one of them non binary, on their journey to give birth to the first child in a decade - away from the eyes of the Federation and all the people who believe they owe this child to everyone. It’s really a beautifully written story of love and compassion.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Blindfold - Tobias S. Buckell This story had some amazing commentary on the privilege of being white passing, the still existing racial prejudices in this particular future (however much people try to deny it) and how steps are being taken to try to ensure a fair judicial process for people of all races and ethnicities. It’s written in second person but was quite easy to read and is definitely a very important tale to tell.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ No Algorithms in the World - Hugh Howey A fascinating story about a world that mostly runs on automation and people have universal basic income to survive. This clearly depicts the generational struggle between a father and son, the older not ready to accept the new reality and the younger wanting the chance to explore. I loved how this mirrors our present conflicts with our parents and elders.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Esperanto - Jamie Ford A story of how people who live in a technologically altered reality will react when all their alterations are stripped away and they are given a glimpse into their true reality. It’s a wonderful tale which tells us that diversity is beautiful.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ROME - G. Willow Wilson This story takes place in a future Seattle where there is no infrastructure anymore due to tax abolition, and a group of students have no choice but to write their midterms even when there is a fire breakout nearby and no firefighters. I’m not sure I fully understood the point of this story, maybe that sometimes the choices that we think are best in the short term could have long term disastrous consequences.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Give me Cornbread, or Give me Death - N. K. Jemisin What imagination Jemisin has. A story about the government trying to recreate the ten plagues to destroy the population of color, the second one of which utilizes dragons. And the resistance tries to win over the dragons by stealthily feeding them tasty spicy food. I was both horrified at the tyranny of the oppressors and delighted at the ingenuity of the women in the resistance. A brave tale of fighting back in any way possible.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5 Good News Bad News - Charles Yu Taking place in the next millennium, this story is told through various news stories detailing the technological breakthroughs and challenges of the day - from racist robots to refugee resettlement on the moon to bots voting on legislations to pharma companies trying to make pills to reduce intolerance and mansplaining - I thought the was a very hilarious and imaginative read. However, even in this world which has finally reached 100% income equality for women and females outnumber males in executive positions, women are still harassed at the workplace by male subordinates. Some things never change.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ What You Sow - Kai Cheng Thom I can’t really explain this story but I think it’s a mirror to a woman’s struggle to always remain calm and composed and non confrontational, to keep the peace, until she realizes she has other options and she should take back her voice and power.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5 A History of Barbed Wire - Daniel H. Wilson Cherokee Nation is a separate country, divided by a wall in this story. However, the land outside the wall has become corrupt and greedy and people ready to give up everything to illegally enter the Indian country. It just shows that sometimes what we wish for won’t turn out the exact way.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Sun in Exile - Catherynne M. Valente An extreme example of what a cult leader can do - convince the adoring masses of the exact opposite of reality. The people are so utterly devoted to their leader that they believe they are in an ice age when they are actually dying of an extreme heat wave. Another story that veers too close to our own reality. Excellent writing!!!Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Harmony - Seanan McGuire The author correctly says in the story that tolerance can be demanded and legislated but not guaranteed because haters are always gonna hate. This is the story of a bisexual/lesbian couple figuring out that their actual dream for life is different from the one they have been told to have, and they decide to take matters into their own hands and create a home for everyone, however different they maybe from the norm.Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Now Wait for This Week - Alice Sola Kim This story could be a metaphor to women being violated in various forms by men all the time, but their voices are never heard and the men are never punished and the cycle continues. However, the story did confuse me a lot and it’s too long and I can’t be sure that I understood it correctly.Rating: ⭐️⭐️.5
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  • Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)
    January 1, 1970
    You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight Goodness, where to begin? Okay look. If you plan to read any anthology in your reading lifetime, it should probably be this one. Not necessarily because of all the raucous good times you'll be having, but because of how well done these stories are, and how completely relevant and important they are. Let us discuss why this is fabulous: •Uh, did you see the author lineup? This is like, s You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight Goodness, where to begin? Okay look. If you plan to read any anthology in your reading lifetime, it should probably be this one. Not necessarily because of all the raucous good times you'll be having, but because of how well done these stories are, and how completely relevant and important they are. Let us discuss why this is fabulous: •Uh, did you see the author lineup? This is like, some kind of League of Amazing Writers™ or something. Can they team up for regularly scheduled anthologies and call themselves this? Because I am here for that. •There is truly not a bummer in the bunch. You know how anthologies always have a few stories that leave you a tad underwhelmed? Not so here. Every single story contained at least some kind of worthwhile message. And they were incredibly engaging, well thought out, and yes, entertaining. •Holy diversity! Just as the author list is gloriously diverse, so too were the stories. Representation of so, so many people, in all sorts of situations, such a win. •Timely, significant, and powerful. These stories highlight the all-too-plausible future we could be facing, given the current trajectory of society. It's terrifying, but more than that, it's necessary.  My one word of caution: I read these stories back to back, all in a row. And it might not be the best way to do it? They're all fabulous, like I said, but I think they might have more of an impact if you read a couple, then take a breather. They're powerful, and it can be a lot all at once. But worth it, without a doubt. Bottom Line: Written by what has to be the most incredible group of authors to have ever joined forces, and written well, these stories will leave you deep in thought long after you close the book.
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  • Leseparatist
    January 1, 1970
    I read this book courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher, in exchange for a review.I found this collection oddly depressing and a little disappointing. So many of the stories hinged on heaping the existing prejudices and unfairness - only MORE - and somehow, instead of translating into angry and bright prose, the result, to me at least, seemed to be of tiredness and certain resignation. Which is not to say any one story was this, exactly, but reading about various ways Otherness could be oppress I read this book courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher, in exchange for a review.I found this collection oddly depressing and a little disappointing. So many of the stories hinged on heaping the existing prejudices and unfairness - only MORE - and somehow, instead of translating into angry and bright prose, the result, to me at least, seemed to be of tiredness and certain resignation. Which is not to say any one story was this, exactly, but reading about various ways Otherness could be oppressed, and humans of the future US could be surveilled and oppressed, rendered the resistance and anger offered by these stories insufficient for me. There were exceptions, of course. Lizz Huerta, Maria Dahvana Headley, Omar El Akkad, Lesley Nneka Arimah, Charles Yu in particular (though I also enjoyed a few more, including Jemisin's story). What is more, the diversity of voices and perspectives was certainly valuable, particularly for readers less familiar with some of the themes the collection showcases. Still, my expectations had been high and this didn't quite work for me as a project, despite its potential.However, it's entirely possible that I am simply not quite the intended audience, and that American readers will get more out of it, considering the huge shadow the current American president casts over the collection and its direction. Perhaps this is a needed response, and the anger it channels will feel more intense or better directed. Perhaps my wavelength wasn't quite right to receive the transmission.But I really want to read more of the authors I listed above, and will look out for their writing.
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  • Katy
    January 1, 1970
    I really enjoyed this stunning speculative fiction anthology, created in the wake of our current political climate. I usually find short story collections uneven, but in this case I liked all except for 2-3 of the 25 stories. Standouts for me were N.K. Jemisin’s Give Me Cornbread or Give Me Death, Kai Cheng Thom’s What You Sow, Ashok K. Banker’s By His Bootstraps, and Maria Dahvana Headley’s Read After Burning. All of the stories coalesced well around the central theme of the book.
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  • Bandit
    January 1, 1970
    October usually calls for scary reads. And, as if reading news alone wasn’t doing the trick, somehow I managed to read not one but two dystopian anthologies inspired by the news. First one was Welcome to Dystopia and objectively this one is a considerably superior of the two. Wherein the first was a sort of knee jerk reaction, lacking maturity and subtlety, this one mostly (mostly) does have that much needed maturity and subtlety. Partially because it was edited by two experts (with a very good October usually calls for scary reads. And, as if reading news alone wasn’t doing the trick, somehow I managed to read not one but two dystopian anthologies inspired by the news. First one was Welcome to Dystopia and objectively this one is a considerably superior of the two. Wherein the first was a sort of knee jerk reaction, lacking maturity and subtlety, this one mostly (mostly) does have that much needed maturity and subtlety. Partially because it was edited by two experts (with a very good foreword by LaValle), partially because of a terrific author line up. In fact, interestingly enough since I read a lot of anthologies and surprisingly this isn’t always the case, here the rule of thumb was the more known the author, the more enjoyable the story. Without exceptions. So it started off very nicely, then got dragged down into that overtly sincere all for the cause territory, then upgraded with some recognizable names and genuinely interesting takes on the possible futures, then got really good toward the end and then stayed one story too long. Over the course of this book I was able to revisit some of the previously enjoyed author, try out some of the ones I knew of and haven’t read yet and…let’s say sit through some of the unknown ones. It appears that the editors’ intent was to be as inclusive as possible both with the author and themes, so this book offers a veritable cornucopia of nonbinary, nontraditional, multiracial, convention free characters and all the strange new worlds their creators throw them in. Actually this might be the first time I’ve read about persons using them pronoun in fiction and this is definitely going to take some getting used to. Obviously the need to self identify in a manner that’s most befitting is important, but it reads confusingly, because as a pronoun it has been used to denote plurality for so long and now it is made to work for both many and individual alike and that might be too much work for one small pronoun. In one story there’s actually a new pronoun used, nir, strange and new but at least easier to read. But anyway, back to the book…I actually think the all inclusive, something for everyone line up might have been a detractor, because it led to a sort of quantity over quality thing going on. This was almost like two books merged into one. So if you’re buying it, you’ll get your money’s worth, but reading it as a free ARC it kind of dragged and took much too long to get through. The good, the really good stories, very interspersed with mediocre ones. And while reading anthologies is usually a reliable source of discovering new authors, this one was more along the lines of reminding the reader while sometimes it’s good to stick with what you know, in this instance going for recognizable names. Although it’s entirely possible that reading two such similar books in the same month wasn’t a great idea, too many stories too close to reality, too depressing altogether. And I do read the news daily, which sort of takes care of feeding that pessimistic attitude, so with fiction I want more, it doesn’t have to be all glitter and rainbows, but it has to elevate reality to other, more interesting and original levels that mere imagination can. So in conclusion…there are some great, engaging and original stories here and some good ones and some that are just ok. This collection might have been improved with some tighter editing, but if it’s a variety you’re after for your dystopian bleakness, this would certainly work. Thanks Netgalley.
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  • Elizabeth
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy of this in exchange for my honest review.This anthology is a who's who in current science fiction and fantasy writing. The stories are varied and all well written with various takes on the future of American culture and society. There are stories about everything from a book store that stands firmly on the dividing line between The United States and the country of California, to one about a world where contraception is outlawe Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy of this in exchange for my honest review.This anthology is a who's who in current science fiction and fantasy writing. The stories are varied and all well written with various takes on the future of American culture and society. There are stories about everything from a book store that stands firmly on the dividing line between The United States and the country of California, to one about a world where contraception is outlawed, and feminists are considered terrorists. Even amid the various stories, there seems to be a thread of hope: hope for a better future, a dream of escape from the horrible now, hope at love, or a world that understands us. That is important in a collection such as this because without hope a collection of stories about the vagaries of the human condition could be depressing. This book isn't. Standout must-reads for this collection are "The Book Store at the End of America" by Charlie Jane Anders. A story about what divides us can ultimately bring us together and "The Synapse will Free Us From Ourselves" by Violet Allen. Allen's story is about high tech gay conversion therapy. It is sad, scary, and poignant. Check out this collection, you will be happy you did.
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  • Kendra
    January 1, 1970
    A great collection of short stories that speculate on the future of the United States...or whatever it becomes. The stories by Charlie Jane Anders, Tananarive Due, N. K. Jemisin, Seanan McGuire, Daniel José Older, and G. Willow Wilson show why these authors had and deserve large audiences and followings. All of the stories feature "badass" characters, as requested by the editors, and they all do deliver, from people who keep information free and available to those who physically protect others. A great collection of short stories that speculate on the future of the United States...or whatever it becomes. The stories by Charlie Jane Anders, Tananarive Due, N. K. Jemisin, Seanan McGuire, Daniel José Older, and G. Willow Wilson show why these authors had and deserve large audiences and followings. All of the stories feature "badass" characters, as requested by the editors, and they all do deliver, from people who keep information free and available to those who physically protect others. This will make a great gift for readers who want tightly written dystopic fiction in which there are still threads of hope.
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  • Jacqie
    January 1, 1970
    I'm going to try something new to me and review these stories as I read them.1. Charlie Jane Anders story: I liked this better than All the Birds in the Sky. The idea is that a bookstore sits on the border between California and the United States in a future in which these entities become two separate countries. California is a bit too PC and tech oriented, with many of its' people wired up. The US has become more fascist and religious. Our main character goes to church in the US and also helps I'm going to try something new to me and review these stories as I read them.1. Charlie Jane Anders story: I liked this better than All the Birds in the Sky. The idea is that a bookstore sits on the border between California and the United States in a future in which these entities become two separate countries. California is a bit too PC and tech oriented, with many of its' people wired up. The US has become more fascist and religious. Our main character goes to church in the US and also helps people escape it if they need to, worries about her daughter, and generally tries to straddle the line in more ways than one. A fight over water ends up with a dozen people in her bookstore/bunker, where they must form a book discussion group in order to keep the peace. I liked this one a lot!
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  • Jypsy
    January 1, 1970
    I'm not a fan of short story collections, and I never read them. The title of this anthology caught my attention, and as I read the synopsis, I knew I had to try this one. I'm glad I did because this is an amazing collection of stories by some of the best authors. All 25 stories are speculative fiction exploring the future of the United States. They run the spectrum from women's rights, race, to plague, robotic takeover, brainwashing and government control. Some are more plausible than others. I I'm not a fan of short story collections, and I never read them. The title of this anthology caught my attention, and as I read the synopsis, I knew I had to try this one. I'm glad I did because this is an amazing collection of stories by some of the best authors. All 25 stories are speculative fiction exploring the future of the United States. They run the spectrum from women's rights, race, to plague, robotic takeover, brainwashing and government control. Some are more plausible than others. It's frightening, however, to realize every story is possible on some level. Some are bleak. Some are hopeful. Just like reality. If you are hesitant about reading this collection, don't be. It's well written and worth the time. Thanks to NetGalley for an arc in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Elizabeth
    January 1, 1970
    There are people that will be angry about this book, and fuck 'em. This collection details a United States that could be- one that often times seems frighteningly real, given the current political climate. Some of the best science fiction writers today are gathered in one place, presenting stories never before been told. Sometimes they can be a bit obvious- but that's obvious to me, a woman who lives near San Francisco, safely ensconced in a fairly liberal bubble and with a comfortable degree of There are people that will be angry about this book, and fuck 'em. This collection details a United States that could be- one that often times seems frighteningly real, given the current political climate. Some of the best science fiction writers today are gathered in one place, presenting stories never before been told. Sometimes they can be a bit obvious- but that's obvious to me, a woman who lives near San Francisco, safely ensconced in a fairly liberal bubble and with a comfortable degree of privilege. They are important tales none the less, and each one is entertaining as hell. Rare for a collection, there's no single weak point, no story that shines less than the rest. I don't even want to call out any strong points, because they were all so good that I think they all deserve a read. This book should absolutely be required reading. It teaches empathy and understanding. It shows what can happen to marginalized communities should the worst come to pass- and sometimes what can still happen even when things go well. There was, however, one glaring omission- none of the stories tackle a future for those with physical disabilities. For a volume that otherwise manages to hit so many other intersections, it's particularly blatant- these possible tomorrows are just as scary for us as they are for anyone else in the volume. Hopefully there will be a volume two, and hopefully this will be corrected in the future.None the less, you should pick this book up. You should give it to your teenagers, your undecided voters, even your 'woke' friends. This is a book that should be taught in schools and given out at polling places. It's by far one of the best that I've read this year, and come 2019 it's truly going to make a splash.
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  • Matthew Lloyd
    January 1, 1970
    I received an ARC of this volume via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. At the moment the title of this volume in the Kindle Edition on Goodreads is "Thirty Visionary Stories"; it actually seems to be "Speculative Fiction from 25 Extraordinary Writers", though.Recently, I have been sporadically listening to a series of lectures by Gary K Wolfe, available from my library via Hoopla, called "How Great Science Fiction Works". In episode five, he discusses utopia and dystopia and offers the I received an ARC of this volume via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. At the moment the title of this volume in the Kindle Edition on Goodreads is "Thirty Visionary Stories"; it actually seems to be "Speculative Fiction from 25 Extraordinary Writers", though.Recently, I have been sporadically listening to a series of lectures by Gary K Wolfe, available from my library via Hoopla, called "How Great Science Fiction Works". In episode five, he discusses utopia and dystopia and offers the following definitions for both, which I found myself reflecting upon as I read this volume:Dystopia: a society that is, above all, avoidable.Utopia: a society which, at least in the view of the author who imagined it, is seen as achievable.Wolfe doesn't present these as absolute definitions but they are interesting ones, and as I read through these twenty five stories, I considered how many of them could comfortably fall into his definition of dystopia. That the future United (or otherwise) States they depict, characterized by oppression and exclusion, might be avoidable if we only take stock and realise that we have to actually do something to avoid them.This approach isn't the only way to take this volume; indeed despite the title of the volume, like most science fiction, these stories are largely about the present not the future. Stories such as A. Merc Rustard's "Our Aim is Not To Die", Kai Cheng Thom's "What You Sow", and Alice Sola Kim's "Now Wait for This Week" seemed to use science fictional premises to describe their present - which, of course, describes a path that the USA (and the UK, and Canada, etc) are on leading to futures that we would be better avoiding. These stories, and others, describe different perspectives in the present United States that need to be taken into account; that people like me need to recognize and give space to in order to avoid the darker futures on offer.There was a point in this volume where it seemed like the only futures for the United States were bleak. This is not a bad thing; this volume clearly exists because we need something to change, to avoid possible dystopias. And yet, scattered within there are more hopeful futures, suggested routes to an achievable future that, while not a utopia (does anyone believe in utopia as an ideal any more?), are better, more inclusive versions of the United States. Malka Older, whose fiction is all about imagining different futures, proposes a route to think about in "Chapter 5: Disruption and Continuity [excepted]". Seanan McGuire's "Harmony" suggests that communities can be built outside the status quo, that "acceptance" by the majority might not be the utopia people need. Perhaps the most positive story is Hugh Howey's "No Algorithms in the World", which gives an idea about how a specific policy (universal basic income) might make the future a better place.But these stories don't - and shouldn't - dominate a volume about where we are, the path we are not yet avoiding. That these twenty five stories have such different perspectives and approaches reminds us of a richness that we are excluding from our culture if we don't embrace them. As with any collected volume, I have my favourites and I have those I didn't like as much, but this one contains so many good-to-excellent stories, so much worth reading, that it doesn't suffer because a few simply weren't to my taste. Those stories might be your favourites. The recommendation is a cautious one, though, because many of these stories are bleak. The United States is in a place where positive takes on the future can be difficult to imagine. If you need those positive stories, this volume may not be what you want.Based on my individual ratings for each story, the average for the volume was 3.71*. Overall, though, I think it does deserve at least four. I can't recall ever getting so into a short story collection as I did this one.
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  • Susie Dumond
    January 1, 1970
    What an incredible collection! I don't think I've ever read a collection of short stories where EVERY. SINGLE. ONE. hits so hard. A People's Future of the United States pictures a country that looks different - often terrifyingly so - but also one where the heroes look different than what we too often see. These stories are filled with unapologetically queer and diverse protagonists, badass heroes from marginalized communities that are pushing back against oppressive forces. And what an incredib What an incredible collection! I don't think I've ever read a collection of short stories where EVERY. SINGLE. ONE. hits so hard. A People's Future of the United States pictures a country that looks different - often terrifyingly so - but also one where the heroes look different than what we too often see. These stories are filled with unapologetically queer and diverse protagonists, badass heroes from marginalized communities that are pushing back against oppressive forces. And what an incredible lineup of writers! N.K. Jemisin, Daniel Jose Older, Gabby Rivera, Justina Ireland, Charlie Jane Anders, and more. Truly an incredible group, giving us an unforgettable book.Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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  • Justine Magowan
    January 1, 1970
    I rarely read a collection of short stories and enjoy every single story. This collection is the exception. I can't even pick a favorite one because I loved them all so much.In my sophomore year of high school, our main history "textbook" was A PEOPLE'S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES, so naturally I was drawn to this collection. I intend to reach out to the head of the English department to suggest some of the stories in conjunction with that course.
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  • Echo C
    January 1, 1970
    “A People’s Future of the United States” is a collection of speculative fiction featuring work from both heavy hitters and lesser known writers in the sci-fi and fantasy worlds including N.K. Jemisin, Tananarive Due, Daniel Jose Older, and others. The essays contained in this anthology draw from a wide range of issues such as immigration, climate change, and much more with a diverse cast of characters representing all walks of life.There were a few stories that I liked more than others. Some of “A People’s Future of the United States” is a collection of speculative fiction featuring work from both heavy hitters and lesser known writers in the sci-fi and fantasy worlds including N.K. Jemisin, Tananarive Due, Daniel Jose Older, and others. The essays contained in this anthology draw from a wide range of issues such as immigration, climate change, and much more with a diverse cast of characters representing all walks of life.There were a few stories that I liked more than others. Some of my favorites were “Attachment Disorder” and “O.1”, both well written, centering on motherhood.
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  • Michael Hicks
    January 1, 1970
    Calling it quits at 34%. This anthology just isn't jiving with me and I haven't really enjoyed any of the seven (out of 20+) stories I've read thus far. I'm finding it hard to want to pick this book up any more and keep reading, so I'm throwing in the towel. No rating.
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  • Sarah (CoolCurryBooks)
    January 1, 1970
    A People’s Future of the United States responds to the current American political climate by bringing together twenty-five authors of marginalized identities to write short stories set in a future version of the United States. Many of these stories are depressing, although a few are more hopeful than despairing.The author line-up is full of such luminaries as Charlie Jane Anders, Justina Ireland, N.K. Jemisin, Sam J. Miller, Malka Older, Catherynne M. Valente, and G. Willow Wilson. Despite that, A People’s Future of the United States responds to the current American political climate by bringing together twenty-five authors of marginalized identities to write short stories set in a future version of the United States. Many of these stories are depressing, although a few are more hopeful than despairing.The author line-up is full of such luminaries as Charlie Jane Anders, Justina Ireland, N.K. Jemisin, Sam J. Miller, Malka Older, Catherynne M. Valente, and G. Willow Wilson. Despite that, I wasn’t over-awed by the collection. Most of the stories are pretty forgettable, and there’s only one that really stood out.That story is “Now Wait for This Week” by Alice Sola Kim, where a woman is stuck repeating a week around when #MeToo breaks. I’ve read plenty of Groundhog Day type stories where a protagonist is stuck in a time loop, but “Now Wait for This Week” isn’t told through the perspective of Bonnie, the one stuck in time, but instead through her roommate. I love the outside view of what Bonnie’s going through, and it makes the story so much more comedic. The thematic material deals with Bonnie’s self-absorption and unwillingness to talk about anything that’s not amusing or uplifting. While to our narrator, Bonnie appears to be making a sharp sudden change, the repeats of the week show the readers how Bonnie is actually gradually growing as a character.I didn’t love any other story as much as “Now Wait for This Week,” but I did like “Harmony” by Seanan McGuire. A married couple gets a house in a “perfect” community only to find there’s a lot of under the surface bigotry against same-sex couples, so the two wind up buying an abandoned town and making their own community. “Harmony” is one of the more hopeful stories in the collection.“Give Me Cornbread or Give Me Death” by N.K. Jemisin imagines a future where a white elite lives in ultra-high-tech towers and genetically engineer police dragons that will racially target black people. But the marginalized communities are able to make the dragons work for them…I also liked “Calendar Girls” by Justina Ireland, which tackles the war on women and reproductive rights. In this future, abortion and all forms of birth control have been banned, leading to matriarchal gangs dealing birth control on street corners. The protagonist is one of these “Calendar Girls” who works a corner in the financial district. I’ve seen stories about reproductive rights being curtailed before, but “Calendar Girls” takes it to the logical conclusion of a black market that I haven’t seen so prominently featured elsewhere.There’s a lot of stories that didn’t make a huge impression. A. Merc Rustad’s story, “Our Aim is Not to Die,” was all right, but they’ve written so many better stories. I likewise thought that Charlie Jane Anders’ “The Bookstore at the End of America” wasn’t her best, and the same goes for “It Was Saturday Night, I Guess That Makes It Alright” by Sam J. Miller. Catherynne M. Valente’s always been hit or miss for me, and her story here was a miss.I’m not going to go through every story in the collection since I don’t have strong feelings about most of them. I will say that I highly disliked “By His Bootstraps” by Ashok K. Banker, in which the president authorizes some sort of addition to the water supply that would “racially cleanse” people or something. The story spins this as being actually a good thing, but I am very uncomfortable with how it is literally erasing mixed race people. I’ve had enough problems with Ashok K. Banker’s stories before (and now with some of his behavior on Twitter) that I should probably just quit reading anything by him, even if it’s in an anthology I’m reviewing.While this dystopian anthology largely left me cold, I really do like the concept, and I hope other readers enjoy it more than I did.I received an ARC in exchange for a free and honest review.Review from The Illustrated Page.
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  • Kelly
    January 1, 1970
    Filled with peoples, worlds, futures, and acts of rebellion that you won't soon forget.(Full disclosure: I received a free e-ARC for review through NetGalley. Trigger warning for violence against a variety of marginalized groups.)You are the amen of my family, and I am the in the beginning of yours. This story is the prayer, or one of them. This story says you can live through anything and that when it is time to go, when the entire world goes dark, then you go together, holding on to one anothe Filled with peoples, worlds, futures, and acts of rebellion that you won't soon forget.(Full disclosure: I received a free e-ARC for review through NetGalley. Trigger warning for violence against a variety of marginalized groups.)You are the amen of my family, and I am the in the beginning of yours. This story is the prayer, or one of them. This story says you can live through anything and that when it is time to go, when the entire world goes dark, then you go together, holding on to one another’s hands, and you whisper the memory of birds and bees and the names of those you loved. When it is not time to go, though, this story says you rise.- "Read After Burning" by Maria Dahvana HeadleyWall to keep the empire safe: strrrrrong empire, empire with mightiest military in the world, empire made of blood and theft, human and land. Before the wall was even finished the empire began to strip rights, silence certain people, keep others sparking in their skins of distrust. But most of the inhabitants paid attention to other things, shiny things, scandals. It would pass, hadn’t it always? White folks had short memories.- "The Wall" by Lizz HuertaY’all, the first baby born to the Federation of Free Peoples was gonna be one incredible brown-ass baby.- "O.1" by Gabby Rivera-- 4.5 stars --Seanan McGuire is an insta-read for me - but, even without her name attached to this project, A People's Future of the United States is still a book I would have pounced on. With its riff on Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States, plethora of diverse contributors, and focus on futures that might be - at a time when the present is so damn depressing - there's no way I could pass it up. And, rather than offer an escape from the now, the stories here challenge the reader to follow this thread to its possible conclusions; to imagine what this world could become, for better or worse; and to rise up, resist, and perhaps steer it to a better, more humane place. My main issue with anthologies is that they tend to be uneven - but A People's History of the United States is as close to uniformly awesome as you can get without being pure perfection. There are a few stories that I just found okay, and one that I skipped altogether. But most of the rest? Took my breath away. For whatever reason (the first bit of the synopsis maybe?), I came to the table expecting visions of future utopias: suggestions for how we can fix this broken planet we call home. And while there are a few budding socialist Edens to be found here - Hugh Howey's "No Algorithms in the World" springs to mind - most are of the dystopian variety. And that's both okay and, let's be honest, totally realistic. The good thing is that, within every story lurks a glimmer of hope. Sometimes it's tenuous and fragile, but it's there, waiting to be nurtured into fruition. My heart, you guys? Swelled so much that it felt fit to burst clear out of my chest. Some of these yarns are that darn shiny.There are way too many to discuss them all, but here goes. "Read After Burning" by Maria Dahvana Headley is as strange as it is lovely. Half the time I was not entirely sure what I was reading, but I was sure I wanted more. In this far-off future dystopia, words are power (though "Knowledge [isn't] enough."), a power that's been chained by the powers that be. Paper is outlawed, so Librarians like the Needle tattoo the stories of the world on their very skin: "manuscripts from authors like Octavia the Empress and Ursula Major." (Tell me you didn't feel those chills.) In the end - or the beginning, rather - these stories become a superpower of sorts, smoke let loose on the battleground. The first of many revolutions. Sam J. Miller explores "the place of sex in a broader strategy of political resistance" in "It Was Saturday Night, I Guess That Makes It All Right." Forced to seek anonymous, illicit sex in back alleys and swampy underpasses (Homosexuality? Illegal. Along with a laundry list of other identities and interests.), Caul finds himself in a parallel world at the moment of orgasm: "A place where what we do matters." And so this tool of the state - he who installs phone cloners up and down the streets of NY, to help the government better surveil its residents - comes to realize that he can be used to dismantle it. (And tell me your heart didn't sink down into the depths of your belly the day that Prince became contraband.) In "Riverbed," Omar El Akkad revisits the site of a mass human rights abuse on its fiftieth anniversary. After a group of suicide bombers attacked a US sporting event with massive casualties, Khadija Singh's family was rounded up and taken to a detention center, 'for their own protection.' (Never mind that they are Sikh, and not Muslim. In her father's words, Americans are "brittle with privilege.") It was only after he escaped that her brother was murdered. On the eve of the unveiling of a gaudy new museum to 'commemorate' the tragedy, Dr. Singh returns to the property to retrieve her brother's meager belongings, so that no part of him might remain in the place of his captivity.Justina Ireland's "Calendar Girls" is a biting look at a world in which contraception, made illegal (while boner pills thrive!), is dealt on street corners like cocaine or heroin. After being orphaned by a forced pregnancy that killed her mom, Alyssa goes to work for the Matriarchs, selling condoms to young women and her local patrolman (already father of nine) alike. There's an arrest, and a shakedown involving a hypocritical Senator (founder of the Abstinence League!) who wants an abortion for his pregnant, unwed teen daughter (See: 'The only moral abortion is my abortion.'), and a double-cross to save the day.Also nestled under the "utopia" umbrella is "O.1" by Gabby Rivera, in which a plague called IMBALANCE ("a sentient bacterium that preyed on white-supremacist greed") killed the 1% and left most of the rest of the population sterile. That is, until a couple named Mala and Orion Lafayette-Santana manage to conceive Baby 0.1 - and the personal quickly becomes the object of public consumption as the the Federation of Free Peoples rallies around this new life. When Mala, Orion, and their birth worker Deviana Ortiz go missing from their home in North Philly, panic - and a massive manhunt - ensues. Told from their alternating perspectives, "O.1" is a story of hope and resilience. This might be the only time I've wished for biological warfare, okay. Team Imbalance all the way.N. K. Jemisin's "Give Me Cornbread or Give Me Death" is simply brilliant: I mean, drug-sniffing, made-that-way racist dragons, sated with collard greens and hot sauce, domesticated with love and affection, and then turned against their (common) oppressors? What's not to love about that? Ditto: the aforementioned "No Algorithms in the World," in which Hugh Howey imagines what society with a guaranteed basic income might look like, from both sides of the generational divide. In "The Referendum," Lesley Nneka Arimah reminds us why we should always listen to black women. And Tananarive Due's "Attachment Disorder" is an epic tale distilled into short story form that will leave you wanting more. I'm certain I'm overlooking a few favorites, but this is a pretty good start. If you like smart speculative fiction, told by a diverse group of voices, with a strong foundation in the here and now, A People's Future of the United States is a slam dunk.  CONTENTSIntroduction by Victor LaValle The Bookstore at the End of America, by Charlie Jane Anders Our Aim Is Not to Die, by A. Merc Rustad The Wall, by Lizz Huerta Read After Burning, by Maria Dahvana Headley Chapter 5: Disruption and Continuity [excerpted], by Malka Older It Was Saturday Night, I Guess That Makes It All Right, by Sam J. Miller Attachment Disorder, by Tananarive Due By His Bootstraps, by Ashok K. Banker Riverbed, by Omar El Akkad What Maya Found There, by Daniel José Older The Referendum, by Lesley Nneka Arimah Calendar Girls, by Justina Ireland The Synapse Will Free Us from Ourselves, by Violet Allen O.1, by Gabby Rivera The Blindfold, by Tobias S. Buckell No Algorithms in the World, by Hugh Howey Esperanto, by Jamie Ford ROME, by G. Willow Wilson Give Me Cornbread or Give Me Death, by N. K. Jemisin Good News Bad News, by Charles Yu What You Sow, by Kai Cheng Thom A History of Barbed Wire, by Daniel H. Wilson The Sun in Exile, by Catherynne M. Valente Harmony, by Seanan McGuire Now Wait for This Week, by Alice Sola Kimhttp://www.easyvegan.info/2019/02/05/...
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  • Callum
    January 1, 1970
    This anthology is one of the most conflicting I’ve ever read. While the subject matter is something I can never get enough of, the swing between fantastic stories and average stories is way too much for this to be highly rated. Let’s be honest, politically and socially, the US is pretty much in hell right now, so reading stories of what our possible future from here could be is oddly cathartic. Some of the highlights of the anthology are hopeful, or at least highlight the more positive things th This anthology is one of the most conflicting I’ve ever read. While the subject matter is something I can never get enough of, the swing between fantastic stories and average stories is way too much for this to be highly rated. Let’s be honest, politically and socially, the US is pretty much in hell right now, so reading stories of what our possible future from here could be is oddly cathartic. Some of the highlights of the anthology are hopeful, or at least highlight the more positive things that could happen in our future. Others are just super weird, which is just as fun. One thing that deserves praise is the entire collections championing of LBGTQ and equal representation. It was wonderful to hear from, and read about, such a diverse array of people. On the other end of the spectrum, there are stories that are, honestly, pretty boring. Some are fairly nonsensical. The thing that makes me most sad is that I think these types of stories, the ones that are at best average, probably make up 2/3 of the entire anthology. I don’t want to focus on the negatives though, so instead, here are my favorite stories from the collection:The Bookstore at the End of the a World by Charlie Jane AndersOur Aim is Not to Die by A. Merc RustadThe Wall by Lizz HuertaRead After Burning by Maria Dahvana HeadleyBy His Bootstraps by Ashok K. BankerNo Algorithms in the World by Hugh HoweyGive Me Cornbread or Give Me Death by N.K. JemisinAll in all, I’d recommend the anthology so long as the person knew what they were getting in to. I think the strength of my favorite stories in this collection about balanced out how flat some of the other stories were. So, for me, it’s a 2.5 stars, rounded to 3 stars for the quality of some of these stories. I was provided with a free ARC of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Rachel Goldstein
    January 1, 1970
    This is a fantastic collection that, to be honest, had me from the title. The roster of amazing authors doesn't hurt. :) While each story is a very different take on the premise of "new futures to believe in," with widely varying levels of light and dark and humor and optimism, the anthology as a whole feels unified. Something about the act of intentionally, determinedly projecting ourselves into this country's future, with an eye to its history, holds everything together in a way I don't usuall This is a fantastic collection that, to be honest, had me from the title. The roster of amazing authors doesn't hurt. :) While each story is a very different take on the premise of "new futures to believe in," with widely varying levels of light and dark and humor and optimism, the anthology as a whole feels unified. Something about the act of intentionally, determinedly projecting ourselves into this country's future, with an eye to its history, holds everything together in a way I don't usually expect in anthologies. There isn't a mediocre story in the bunch. That said, I do think it starts and ends strong, with The Bookstore at the End of America (by Charlie Jane Anders) and Now Wait for This Week (by Alice Sola Kim), about bookselling + borders and time loops + cyclical shittiness particularly of the cis male persuasion, respectively; and some of my favorites in between are The Synapse Will Free Us From Ourselves (Violet Allen; fuck assimilation), The Referendum (Lesley Nneka Arimah; waiting for a vote on reinstating slavery); Attachment Disorder (Tananarive Due; former scientific experiments, family, and freedom), Riverbed (Omar el Akkad; personal aftermath of a brief frenzy of internment, years later), Calendar Girls (Justina Ireland; dealing illegal contraceptives, and the bit part players who aren't in it for the rebellion), Give Me Cornbread or Give Me Death (NK Jemisin; dragons, collard greens, intersectional aid to a war waged by spice <3), Harmony (Seanan McGuire; self-care vs endurance, one's dreams vs the American Dream), O.1 (Gabby Rivera; life after the viral destruction of white male greed, and the first child born into it), Our Aim Is Not to Die (A. Merc Rustad; despair/hope/risk under minute governmental identity policing), and Good News Bad News (Charles Yu; a weirdly hilarious snapshot of the future via headlines).
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  • Christian
    January 1, 1970
    The official description of this collection of short stories reads as follows: What if America's founding ideals finally became reality? A future of peace, justice, and love comes to life in original speculative stories that challenge oppression and embrace inclusiveness--from N. K. Jemisin, Charles Yu, Jamie Ford, and more.I genuinely wonder if the person who wrote this read the book. That description makes it sound like this is a collection of stories dreaming of a better future. It isn't. Thi The official description of this collection of short stories reads as follows: What if America's founding ideals finally became reality? A future of peace, justice, and love comes to life in original speculative stories that challenge oppression and embrace inclusiveness--from N. K. Jemisin, Charles Yu, Jamie Ford, and more.I genuinely wonder if the person who wrote this read the book. That description makes it sound like this is a collection of stories dreaming of a better future. It isn't. This is a collection of dark predictions of a dystopic future America. There are some exceptions, some are hopeful and a couple of the stories are downright positive, but overall this isn't a dream of a better tomorrow. This is a cautionary tale of where the authors fear we are headed. And sometimes it isn't even that, but more of a lament of today. It often feels like a cry of pain in the form of science stories. I have trouble rating short story collections because rarely are they all perfect or even all good, and this isn't an exception to that. Some of these really didn't work and some are really just too silly or too over-the-top or not over-the-top enough. But there were quite a few that I really really liked. There were some that I will reread more than once and a couple that will stick in my mind for awhile. It also helps that two of my favourites were the first and last stories. I also feel a need to mention that I listened to the audible version of this and I was really impressed by the production values on display; some stories switched readers mid story to good effect, others had slight sound effects and music, and a few used voice modulation very effectively. The performers were also all very good.
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  • Gabrielle Holcomb
    January 1, 1970
    ARC received from NetGalley in exchange for a review. All of my opinions are my own, and are in no way affected by the exchange. This averaged out to a 2.8 star rating per story.70 ☆/25 = 2.8 avg ☆ rating My favorites in this anthology came from Justina Ireland, N. K. Jemison, and Seanan McGuire but that's not surprising because I like all three of those authors. But I would totally read full length novels based on their stories. 1) The Bookstore at the End of America- Charlie Jane Anders 2/5☆2) ARC received from NetGalley in exchange for a review. All of my opinions are my own, and are in no way affected by the exchange. This averaged out to a 2.8 star rating per story.70 ☆/25 = 2.8 avg ☆ rating My favorites in this anthology came from Justina Ireland, N. K. Jemison, and Seanan McGuire but that's not surprising because I like all three of those authors. But I would totally read full length novels based on their stories. 1) The Bookstore at the End of America- Charlie Jane Anders 2/5☆2) Our Aim is Not to Die- A. Merc Rustad 3/5☆3) The Wall- Lizz Huerta 1/5 ☆4) Read After Burning- Maria Davhana Headley 2/5☆5) Disruption and Continuity [exerpt]- Malka Older 3/5☆6) It Was Saturday Night and I Guess it Makes it All Right- Sam J Miller 3/5☆7) Attachment Disorder- Tananarive Due 3/5☆8) By His Bootstraps- Ashok K Baker 2/5☆9) Riverbed- Omar El Akkad 2/5☆10) What Maya Found There- Daniel Jose Older 3/5☆11) The Referendem- Lesley Nneka Arimah 3/5☆ 12) Calendar Girls- Justina Ireland 5/5☆ 😊13) The Synap Will Free Us from Ourselves- Violet Allen 2/5☆14) O.1- Gabby Rivera 1/5☆15) The Blindfold- Tobias S. Bickell 3/5☆16) No Algorithims in the Real World- Hugh Howey 3/5☆17) Esperanto- Jaime Ford 4/5☆18) Rome- G. Willow Wilson 2/5☆19) Give Me Cornbread or Give Me Death- N. K. Jemison 5/5☆ 😊20) Good News, Bad News- Charles Yu 3/5☆21) What You Sow- Kai Cheng Thom 2/5☆22) A History of Barbed Wire- Daniel H Wilson 2/5☆23) The Sun in Exile- Catherynne M. Valente 3/5☆24) Harmony-Seanan McGuire 5/5☆ 😊25) Now Wait for This Week- Alice Sola Kim 3/5☆
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  • Jen
    January 1, 1970
    Full disclosure: I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.This is a phenomenal anthology which taps into the current zeitgeist of resistance, comprised of 25 stories which tackle topics (in a multitude of ways) such as racial and ethnic discrimination, transgender discrimination, government surveillance, etc., written by a wonderfully diverse and extremely talented set of authors. As speculative fiction, these stories explore what the (some Full disclosure: I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.This is a phenomenal anthology which taps into the current zeitgeist of resistance, comprised of 25 stories which tackle topics (in a multitude of ways) such as racial and ethnic discrimination, transgender discrimination, government surveillance, etc., written by a wonderfully diverse and extremely talented set of authors. As speculative fiction, these stories explore what the (somewhat) near future could look like, if certain trends continue on a slippery slope, or if certain technologies existed, or if certain changes happened in our society.If that description doesn't sound appealing to you, this may not be the anthology for you.I'm normally somewhat ambivalent about the short story form, as I generally prefer reading novels. I find short stories pretty hit or miss, and as such, I usually find anthologies to be a bit of a mixed bag. Out of 25 stories, there were only about 3 I disliked, which is an impressive ratio. (I don't think these stories were bad; they're just not at all the type of story I like to read.) All in all, I found this anthology to be fascinating, devastating, and inspiring, and exactly the kind of thing I needed to read right now.
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  • Ben
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing an ARC in exchange for a review.Sci-fi anthologies are tricky to talk about, because they're designed to be a mixed bag - everyone is going to have different preferences in what worked for them and what didn't, what was great and what was merely fine.The range of authors here is impressive, and each of them takes on the premise of addressing a potential future with aplomb. The stuff that worked for me here, really worked for me, and the stuff t Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing an ARC in exchange for a review.Sci-fi anthologies are tricky to talk about, because they're designed to be a mixed bag - everyone is going to have different preferences in what worked for them and what didn't, what was great and what was merely fine.The range of authors here is impressive, and each of them takes on the premise of addressing a potential future with aplomb. The stuff that worked for me here, really worked for me, and the stuff that didn't really didn't - there were a few stories that felt like a slog to complete. My favorites were probable Charlie Jane Anders and N.K. Jemisin's contribuitions. Overall, I think this one is worth checking out, but treat it like any other anthology - stick with what works for you and skim what doesn't.
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  • Reviews & Robots
    January 1, 1970
    A People’s Future of the United States gives a glimpse of 25 different futures. The extremely talented cast of writers covers the most pressing topics of our day, looking at women’s rights, racism, homophobia, climate change, robot–human relations, and so much more. The world is a scary place and stories like these show us what we — as communities, countries and the world — need to do in order to avoid a future straight out of a dystopian novel. It’s a smart collection that will both amuse and t A People’s Future of the United States gives a glimpse of 25 different futures. The extremely talented cast of writers covers the most pressing topics of our day, looking at women’s rights, racism, homophobia, climate change, robot–human relations, and so much more. The world is a scary place and stories like these show us what we — as communities, countries and the world — need to do in order to avoid a future straight out of a dystopian novel. It’s a smart collection that will both amuse and terrify you to the core. Pick it up, devour it, and don’t forget that we still have a chance to avoid these futures.NOTE: I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.
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  • Heather
    January 1, 1970
    Many thanks to NetGalley for sending me an advanced reader's copy of The People's Future of the United States in exchange for an honest review.It really hard to put into words how much I loved this book. I've been spending the past month trying to figure out how best to put what when on in my mind on to paper to review it, but there's really not easy way to explain it without experiencing it yourself. If I wanted to boil it down to three words it would be: THIS IS IMPORTANT.To start out, I have Many thanks to NetGalley for sending me an advanced reader's copy of The People's Future of the United States in exchange for an honest review.It really hard to put into words how much I loved this book. I've been spending the past month trying to figure out how best to put what when on in my mind on to paper to review it, but there's really not easy way to explain it without experiencing it yourself. If I wanted to boil it down to three words it would be: THIS IS IMPORTANT.To start out, I have not read The People's History of the United States by Harold Zinn, but from mind understand, The People's Future is similar in a sense that it's told with the same perspective in mind. This collection tells the of possible futures from the people who are too often handed the short end of the stick, the people whose voice often get silenced in this white, rich, heteronormative world. The People's Future of the United States reminded me a lot of The Handmaid's Tale and The Power. It's scary, in a way, because some of the stories told feel so plausible, so real. I had to take some time after I finished each story to digest what happened, why the author may have explained a future in that particular way. At times I was speechless, heartbroken, inspired, and even angry. The People's Future of the United States is something I believe all of us should take some time to read, even if it's just one of two stories. I think this book is so so so important to what's going on with society and I cannot stress that enough. It sheds light on perspectives many of us have never thought about before. I apologize for getting political in a book review, but not doing so would not bring this book justice. It's the reason Victor LaValle and a slew of amazing, diverse writers put together this collection. In short, it's a message and a plead that things need to change or we will move backwards.If you want to read a book that you challenge your thoughts and perhaps stay with you for a long time, pick up The People's Future of the United States. Do it for the authors. Do it for people of color, the LGBTQ+ community, women and please, open your ears and listen to what they are saying.
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  • Brooke
    January 1, 1970
    I really wanted to love this collection. 25 stories set 5 minutes in the future, imagining Americas that could be, written by some of the best authors in the game. Unfortunately, most of these pieces didn't land for me in a way that makes me feel strangely guilty. I know these stories are catharsis and wish fulfillment and taking control of one's own narrative, but the majority of them were just too heavy handed to resonate. However, I did have a few 5 star standouts:- "Riverbed" by Omar El Akka I really wanted to love this collection. 25 stories set 5 minutes in the future, imagining Americas that could be, written by some of the best authors in the game. Unfortunately, most of these pieces didn't land for me in a way that makes me feel strangely guilty. I know these stories are catharsis and wish fulfillment and taking control of one's own narrative, but the majority of them were just too heavy handed to resonate. However, I did have a few 5 star standouts:- "Riverbed" by Omar El Akkad- "The Synapse Will Free Us From Ourselves" by Violet Allen- "Now Wait for this Week" by Alice Sola Kim
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  • adeservingporcupine
    January 1, 1970
    I enjoyed every story and loved several of them. What a hopeful take on the hole we are digging ourselves into. Loved “The Bookstore at the End of America,” “The Wall” (apparently written before we all found out about child separation and therefore prophetic?), “Calendar Girls,” “O.1” (set in Philly), “Good News, Bad News,” “ROME,” (which reminded me of the PDE’s directions in the event a fire alarm goes off while kids are taking the test: gather the tests and don’t leave them out of your sight) I enjoyed every story and loved several of them. What a hopeful take on the hole we are digging ourselves into. Loved “The Bookstore at the End of America,” “The Wall” (apparently written before we all found out about child separation and therefore prophetic?), “Calendar Girls,” “O.1” (set in Philly), “Good News, Bad News,” “ROME,” (which reminded me of the PDE’s directions in the event a fire alarm goes off while kids are taking the test: gather the tests and don’t leave them out of your sight), “Now Wait For This Week,” “A History of Barbed Wire.” Every story was good, if not great.
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  • Gabrielle Melton
    January 1, 1970
    Each one of these pieces is so different and enjoyable in their own rights, dipping the reader into a new, different speculation with each story. There were a few that I didn’t want to end, and a smaller few that I didn’t enjoy as much, but overall this was a fun tour of various authors and their ideas of what the future could be.
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  • Minosh
    January 1, 1970
    Entertaining but only a couple of stories stood out as fabulous to me. Also included one story which talked about race in a really gross and uncomfortable way.
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