Uncanny Angles (Sean Williams, Wakefield)
Since the late 90s Sean Williams has been a prolific contributor to Australian speculative fiction; he’s written award-winning science fiction, post-collapse and young adult books. Part retrospective, part confession, Uncanny Angles is a collection of 14 short stories written over a 20-year period. Williams introduces each story with the context and inspiration behind it, sharing his thoughts about genre fiction and his work. Many of the stories are throwbacks to his other works, particularly the ‘Twinmaker’ and ‘Broken Land’ series (both of which would be perfect for the new crop of YA science fiction readers). That’s a little bonus for fans, but the stories also work fine on their own and I’d recommend this book to speculative fiction fans of all ages. It will make you rethink classic sci-fi technology (particularly teleporters) and will also take you on powerful emotional journeys, often by changing only the tiniest thing. In Uncanny Angles you’ll find a post-script to H G Wells’s War of the Worlds; a man who wakes in hospital with a small but devastating memory loss; some quite scary future urban legends; and a witch who can steal the spark of love. Like Williams’s favourite piece of sci-fi tech, this book will take you far away in an instant. But beware—there’s no guarantee that you’ll come back to the same place you left.
Stefen Brazulaitis is the owner of Stefen’s Books in Perth.
Pictured: Sean Williams. Credit: James Braund.