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The best science fiction and fantasy stories from 2019, guest-edited by author of the mega-best-selling Outlander series, Diana Gabaldon.

Today’s readers of science fiction and fantasy have an appetite for stories that address a wide variety of voices, perspectives, and styles. There is an openness to experiment and pushing boundaries, combined with the classic desire to read about spaceships and dragons, future technology and ancient magic, and the places where they intersect. Contemporary science fiction and fantasy looks to accomplish the same goal as ever—to illuminate what it means to be human. With a diverse selection of stories chosen by series editor John Joseph Adams and Diana Gabaldon, The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2020 explores the ever-expanding and changing world of SFF today.

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About the Author

John Joseph Adams is the editor of John Joseph Adams Books, a science fiction and fantasy imprint from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. He is also the series editor of Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, as well as the bestselling editor of more than thirty anthologies. He is also the editor and publisher of the magazines Nightmare and the Hugo Award–winning Lightspeed, and is a producer for WIRED’s The Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast.

About the Narrators

Andre Blake is a voice talent and audiobook narrator.

Andi Arndt is a professional voice actor, the winner of a 2017 Audie Award for Best Romance, and winner of two Earphones Awards.

Bahni Turpin, winner of numerous AudioFile Earphones Awards and several prestigious Audie Awards for her narrations, was named a “Golden Voice” by AudioFile magazine in 2019. Publishers Weekly magazine named her Narrator of the Year for 2016. She is an ensemble member of the Cornerstone Theater Company in Los Angeles. She has guest starred in many television series, including NYPD Blue, Law & Order, Six Feet Under, Cold Case, What about Brian, and The Comeback. Film credits include Brokedown Palace, Crossroads, and Daughters of the Dust. She is also a member of the recording cast of The Help, which won numerous awards.

Edoardo Ballerini, an American actor, director, film producer, and award–winning narrator. He has won several Audie Awards for best narration, including for 2019’s Best Male Narrator of the Year, and was named a Golden Voice by AudioFile magazine in 2019. He has narrated over two hundred audiobooks, from classics to modern masters, from bestsellers to the inspirational, from Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners to spine-tingling series, and much more. In television and film, he is best known for his roles in The Sopranos, 24, I Shot Andy Warhol, Dinner Rush, and Romeo Must Die. He is also trained in theater and continues to do much work on stage.

Emily Woo Zeller is an artist, actor, dancer, choreographer, and voice artist who has won Earphones Awards and the prestigious Audie Award for Best Narration in 2018. She began her voice-over career by voicing animation in Asia. AudioFile magazine named her one of the Best Voices of 2013 for her work in Gulp. Other awards include the 2009 Tristen Award for Best Actress as Sally Bowles in Cabaret and the 2006 Roselyn E. Schneider Prize for Creative Achievement.

Gabra Zackman is an actress, author, and narrator who has won several AudioFile Earphones Awards. She was educated at Northwestern University. A classically trained actress, she has appeared in theaters all over the country as well as on film and television.

Jay Snyder is a voice actor, voice director, and script adapter who studied acting at the Julliard School in New York City. He is best known as the voice of Yugi Muto from the Japanese manga television series, Yu-Gi-Oh! His audiobook narrations have earned three AudioFile Earphones Awards, and he was a finalist for the Audie Award for Best Fiction Narration in 2015.

Kevin R. Free is an audiobook narrator and the winner of numerous AudioFile Earphones Awards and several AudioFile best narrations of the year selections. Known for his work with young-adult novels, he has read titles by Rick Riordan, Walter Dean Myers, and Joe Haldeman. In 2011 he was named a Best Voice in Young Adult and Fantasy from AudioFile magazine for his narration of Myers’ The Cruisers: Checkmate.

Kim Mai Guest is an award-winning voice actor for audiobooks and video games. She can also be heard on television shows, such as G.I. Joe: Renegades, Batman: the Brave and the Bold, and Avatar, and in movies such asChill Out Scooby Doo and Dead Space: Aftermath. Her video game work includes Metal Gear Solid, Final Fantasy, and The Lord of the Rings.

Neil Shah is an Audie-nominated narrator and winner of multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards who has recorded over 150 audiobooks. AudioFile magazine has commended him for “an absolutely mesmerizing listening experience” and as “an outstanding narrator who adds a healthy dose of personality to each of the characters.” As a classically trained actor with an MFA from the Old Globe/University of San Diego, he has appeared off Broadway and on regional stages, as well as in film and television. He records from his home studio in Portland, Oregon.

Nicola Barber, is an Audie Award and Earphones Award-winning narrator whose voice can be heard in television and radio commercials and popular video games such as World of Warcraft. She is also an Audie finalist in the prestigious category of solo female narrationfor her work on Murphy’s Law by Rhys Bowen and Call the Midwife by Jennifer Worth. She has performed on the stage in New York City and at a number of top regional theaters in the United States. Her film and television roles include The Nanny Diaries with Scarlett Johansson, and Law & Order’s 2009 season premiere. Originally from England, she currently resides in New York, a multicultural background that enables her to bring a broad range of accents and characterizations to her role as a full-time voice-over actor.

Polly Lee, an Earphones Award–winning narrtor, is an actress from London who has appeared in the off-Broadway shows Lenin’s Embalmer’s, Close Ties, Slag Heap, The October Crisis, and others. She received her BA degree in theater studies from London University and an MFA from the New School in New York.

Rebecca Lowman is an actress and audiobook narrator who has won numerous Earphones Awards. She has starred in numerous television shows, including Law & Order, Big Love, NCIS, and Grey’s Anatomy, among many others. She earned her MFA from Columbia University.

Sean Crisden is an actor and Earphones Award-winning narrator. He has also voiced characters in numerous video games, such as the award-winning ShadowGun, and has appeared in many commercials and films, including The Last Airbender.

Priya Ayyar is an audiobook narrator, actor, and writer with a BFA and MFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. Her acting credits for television and film include Law & Order: Criminal Intent, All My Children, and the documentary The Children of War. She has appeared on stage in War of the Unheard, Aminta, and The Road Home, and she has written and performed in the plays Karmic Fusion and Losing Remote Control.

Rebecca Lowman is an actress and audiobook narrator who has won numerous Earphones Awards. She has starred in numerous television shows, including Law & Order, Big Love, NCIS, and Grey’s Anatomy, among many others. She earned her MFA from Columbia University.

Lisa Flanagan is a classically trained soprano, comedian, voice-over artist, and Earphones Award–winning narrator.

Lauren Ezzo, an Earphones Award-winning narrator, is a commercial voice talent and Chicago–based actor and graduate of Hope College. She has acted in Peppermint Creek Theatre Company’s world premiere of Or You Could Kiss Me. Her narrations have placed her on several “Best of the Year” lists, including AudioFile’s Best Audiobooks of the Year list. In 2018, she was part of a full cast of narrators nominated for the prestigious Audie Award for Best Original Work.

Diana Gabaldon is the beloved author of seven New York Times bestselling novels in the series that began with Outlander, including Dragonfly in Amber, Voyager, Drums of Autumn, The Fiery Cross, A Breath of Snow and Ashes, and An Echo in the Bone. In 1997 she received the RT Award for Innovative Historical Romance.

Gabra Zackman is an actress, author, and narrator who has won several AudioFile Earphones Awards. She was educated at Northwestern University. A classically trained actress, she has appeared in theaters all over the country as well as on film and television.

Polly Lee, an Earphones Award–winning narrtor, is an actress from London who has appeared in the off-Broadway shows Lenin’s Embalmer’s, Close Ties, Slag Heap, The October Crisis, and others. She received her BA degree in theater studies from London University and an MFA from the New School in New York.

Robert Petkoff is an actor and audiobook narrator who has won a prestigious Audie Award and multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards. He has appeared on Chappelle’s Show, Law & Order, and Quantum Leap. His Broadway credits include Sir Robin in Spamalot, Perchik in Fiddler on the Roof, and Tateh in Ragtime.

Michael Curran-Dorsano is a voice talent and AudioFile Earphones Award–winning narrator.