“This anthology showcases some of the best writing in the field from 2015. Readers of speculative fiction will recognize some of the authors included in this volume—such as Kelly Link, Sofia Samatar, and Ted Chiang—but the anthology is diverse and includes some uncommon names as well. […] Overall, the stories are highly accessible, with interesting ideas privileged over adventure.” —Rain Taxi, on BASFF 2016 [review]
“One kickass good anthology […] Every one of these stories is, as advertised, far-future, galaxy-spanning, and involves people confronting huge problems caused by technology, in some cases so advanced as to be, as Arthur C. Clarke said, “indistinguishable from magic.” […] Highly recommended.” –File 770, on COSMIC POWERS [review]
“Astonishingly good […] Rich in great stories.” —Rocket Stack Rank, on COSMIC POWERS [review]
The reviewer singled out “Zen and the Art of Starship Maintenance” by Tobias S. Buckell as the best story in the book, giving it 5/5 stars. They also highly recommended the stories by Charlie Jane Anders, Adam-Troy Castro, Seanan McGuire, and Yoon Ha Lee. Each story gets a minireview at the link.
“The newest short story collection edited by Adams resonates with a buoyancy that can often be lost in contemporary science fiction, reminding us that futuristic doesn’t always have to mean gritty. But don’t take that to mean that these stories lack depth or feeling. The authors deftly balance the adventure and sense of wonder with solid worldbuilding and characters who quickly become familiar friends by the time their tales end. This collection will prove to be great reading for fans of the space cowboy antics of Guardians of the Galaxy, Firefly and Cowboy Bebop.” —RT Book Reviews [review]
“The wide range of styles, genres, and themes in What the #@&% Is That? make it perfect for finding a new favorite author or discovering upcoming voices in fiction. The three stories mentioned [in our review] are from three newer writers, yet they are some of the strongest and most original in the collection. Anthologies of such high quality are rare gems.” —New York Journal of Books, on WHAT THE #@&% IS THAT? [review]