Future Crimes, edited by Jack Dann and Gardner Dozois, (Ace, 2003)

In contrast to the original anthologies I’ve been looking at, Future Crimes is a collection of reprints, bringing together eight stories of, well, crime in the future. I’m sure some of the selections will be familiar to any fan of the genre. By far the most famous of these is Harlan Ellison’s classic “‘Repent, Harlequin!’ Said the Ticktockman” which is one of those stories that almost defies description, about a world where lateness is a crime carrying a death sentence and one man dares to defy the entire clockwork system. Another classic is C.M. Kornbluth’s “Time Bum,” where an ingenious scam carries an unexpected twist. It’s a short and subtle piece with an old-fashioned flavor to it, but still quite entertaining. Also included is Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s “The Retrieval Artist,” about a detective who specializes in finding what doesn’t want to be found, a story which has since become the basis for an entire series of books. With other stories by Michael Swanwick, Algis Budrys, Brian Stableford, Tony Daniel, and Kim Stanley Robinson, Future Crimes is a nice, solid collection of quality reprints, worth checking out. Once again, Dann and Dozois have a knack for putting together these theme reprints.

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