Uncovering Speculative Fiction Lurking in Four Literary Collections

Usually I use TBR Stack to dive into a book I’ve been eyeing for months or even years, hoping each time that I’ll be able to breathlessly recommend it to you. This time I’ve decided to do something different: I’m recommending four books.

Or, more specifically, I’m recommending some excellent speculative short fiction, and one essay, that I found lurking in otherwise realistic collections. Sara Batkie’s Better Times, Everyday People, edited by Jennifer Baker, Alexander Chee’s How to Write an Autobiographical Novel, and Nafissa Thompson-Spires’ The Heads of the Colored People are all great recent collections that each contain speculative gems.

 

“Cleavage” and “Lookaftering,” Better Times by Sara Batkie

Sara Batkie’s debut short story collection, Better Times, was the winner of Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Fiction. While the collection is largely realistic literary fiction, two of the stories edge into the ...