Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2021


The Best American series is the premier annual showcase for the country’s finest short fiction and nonfiction. Each volume’s series editor selects notable works from hundreds of magazines, journals, and websites. A special guest editor—a leading writer in the field—then chooses the best twenty or so pieces to publish. This unique system has made the Best American series the most respected—and most popular—of its kind.

This year’s selection of science fiction and fantasy stories, chosen by series editor John Joseph Adams and bestselling author of the Divergent series Veronica Roth, showcases a crop of authors that are willing to experiment and tantalize readers with new takes on classic themes and exchanges the ordinary for the avant-garde. Folktales and lore come alive, the dead rise, the depths of space are traversed, and magic threads itself through singular moments of love, loss, and the circulatory nature of life, death, the in-between, and the after. The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2021 captures the all-too-real cataclysm of human nature, as it claims its place in the series with compelling prose, lyrical composition, and curiosity’s never-ending pursuit of discovering the unknown.

The 2021 volume collects the best material published in 2020, selected by series editor John Joseph Adams and guest editor Veronica Roth.

ISBN: 9780358469964
Format: Trade Paperback / Ebook / Audiobook
Publicity Contact: Taryn Roeder <>


This long-running anthology series continues its tradition of excellence [with an] extremely worthy collection […]The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2020 is highly recommended for anyone interested in contemporary speculative fiction, or just some of the best current American fiction, period.

—Booklist, on BASFF 2020

Machado’s selections lean toward the experimental, the literary, and the boundary-pushing. […] There’s a decidedly global, multicultural feel to these pieces, which exemplify diversity and representation. […] a masterful showcase of what’s possible.

—Publishers Weekly, on BASFF 2019

These are stories to take your breath away, to make you laugh, to bring you to despair, to give you hope, to creep you out, and even to break your heart. [A]ll are interesting, vibrant, and worthy.

—Booklislt, on BASFF 2018

Superb. […] This mostly dystopic, sometimes darkly humorous collection of 20 hard-hitting stories feels timely, confronting contemporary cultural crises such as racism, xenophobia, police brutality, barriers to health care access, and the social misuses of technology.

—Publishers Weekly, on BASFF 2017

Intellectually demanding […] a very elite, highly curated set of stories. […] A set of primal, classic-seeming tales from our past, present, and future.

—Kirkus, on BASFF 2016

Stellar […] An illuminating anthology for genre devotees and curious readers interested in exploring sf/fantasy.

—Library Journal, on BASFF 2015