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The Steel Valentine

Joe R. Lansdale

"Even before Morley told him, Dennis knew things were about to get ugly. A man did not club you unconscious, bring you to his estate and tie you to a chair in an empty storage shed out back of the place if he merely intended to give you a valentine. Morley had found out about him and Julie."

A short story in the tradition of Fleming or Dahl, "The Steel Valentine" is a gem, exemplifying the suspense writing of Joe Lansdale.

This story originally appeared in the collection By Bizarre Hands (1989). It can also be found in the anthology The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror: Third Annual Collection (1990), edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling. The story is included in the collection High Cotton: Selected Stories of Joe R. Lansdale (2000). Chapbook editions of this story appeared in 1991 and 2011.

Valentine

Lucius Shepard

In South Florida, a journalist is stranded in the coastal town of Piersall. This secluded landscape hosts an unlikely encounter with a past love and the beginning of a chain of events that will link the estranged lovers. Shepard investigates the nature of their love and the elusive, alienating force that separated them in the past, despite their seemingly boundless passion. Here is an erotic valentine of insatiable longing and hope. “[Lucius Shepard] Brings to mind Graham Greene, Robert Stone, and Ward Just.” -- Wall Street Journal

A Bead of Jasper, Four Small Stones

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in Clarkesworld Magazine, #73 October 2012. It can also be found in the anthologies The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Seven (2013), edited by Jonathan Strahan, and Clarkesworld: Year Seven (2015), edited by Sean Wallace and Neil Clarke.

Read the full story for free at Clarkesworld.

Abandonware

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in Lightspeed, September 2018.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed.

Aberration

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in the anthology Fearsome Magics (2014), edited by Jonathan Strahan, and was reprinted in Lightspeed, July 2018. It can also be found in the anthology The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2015, edited by Rich Horton.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed.

Abyssus Abyssum Invocat

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in Lightspeed, February 2013. It can also be found in the anthology Mermaids and Other Mysteries of the Deep (2015), edited by Paula Guran.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed.

Advection

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in Clarkesworld Magazine, August 2009. It can also be found in the anthology Clarkesworld: Year Three (2013), edited by Sean Wallace and Neil Clarke.

Read the full story for free at Clarkesworld.

Bespoke

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared on Strange Horizons, 27 July 2009. It can also be found in the anthologies:

Read the full story for free at Strange Horizons.

Blood, Ash, Braids

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in the anthology Operation Arcana (2015), edited by John Joseph Adams. Ik can also be found in the anthologies Year's Best Young Adult Speculative Fiction 2015 (2016), edited by Julia Rios and Alisa Krasnostein, and The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Ten (2016), edited by Jonathan Strahan.

Carthago Delenda Est

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in the anthology Federations (2009), edited by John Joseph Adams, and was reprinted in Lightspeed, September 2017. The story can also be found in the anthologies War & Space: Recent Combat (2012), edtied by Sean Wallace and Rich Horton, and Aliens: Recent Encounters (2013), edited by Alex Dally MacFarlane.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed Magazine.

Dream Houses

Genevieve Valentine

It takes a certain type to crew a ship that drops you seven years at a time into the Deep. Kite-class cargo ships like Menkalinan get burned-out veterans, techs who've been warned off-planet, medics who weren't much good on the ground. The Gliese-D run isn't quite the end of the line, but it's getting there. No cachet, no rewards, no future; their trading posts get Kites full of cargo that the crew never ask questions about, because if it's headed for Gliese-D, it's probably something nobody wanted.

A year into the Deep, Amadis Reyes wakes up. Menkalinan is sounding the alarm; something's wrong. The rest of the crew are dead.

That's not even what's wrong.

Anthologized in Paula Guran's The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Novellas 2015.

Everyone from Themis Sends Letters Home

Genevieve Valentine

This novelette originally appeared in Clarkesworld, Issue 121, October 2016. It can also be found in the anthologies The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume 11 (2017), edited by Jonathan Strahan, The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2017, edited by Rich Horton, and The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2017, edited by John Joseph Adams and Charles Yu.

Read the full story for free at Clarkesworld.

Familiaris

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in the anthology The Starlit Wood (2016), edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe, and was reprinted in Lightspeed, April 2017.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed.

Given the Advantage of the Blade

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in Lightspeed, August 2015.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed.

La beauté sans vertu

Genevieve Valentine

La beauté sans vertu by Genevieve Valentine is a vicious little swipe at the fashion industry as certain disturbing trends are amplified in the future and a famous fashion House prepares for an important show.

This short story can also be found in the anthology Worlds Seen in Passing: Ten Years of Tor.com Short Fiction (2018), edited by Irene Gallo.

Read the full story for free at Tor.com.

Light on the Water

Genevieve Valentine

WFA nominated short story. It originally appeared in Fantasy Magazine, October 2009.

Read the full story for free at Fantasy Magazine.

Mechanique: A Tale of the Circus Tresaulti

Genevieve Valentine

Come inside and take a seat; the show is about to begin...

Outside any city still standing, the Mechanical Circus Tresaulti sets up its tents. Crowds pack the benches to gawk at the brass-and-copper troupe and their impossible feats: Ayar the Strong Man, the acrobatic Grimaldi Brothers, fearless Elena and her aerialists who perform on living trapezes. War is everywhere, but while the Circus is performing, the world is magic.

That magic is no accident: Boss builds her circus from the bones out, molding a mechanical company that will survive the unforgiving landscape.

But even a careful ringmaster can make mistakes.

Two of Tresaulti's performers are trapped in a secret standoff that threatens to tear the Circus apart, just as the war lands on their doorstep. Now they must fight a war on two fronts: one from the outside, and a more dangerous one from within...

Seeing

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in Clarkesworld Magazine, November 2010. The story can also be found in the anthologies Clarkesworld: Year Five (2013), edited by Neil Clarke and Sean Wallace, and The Final Frontier (2018), edited by Neil Clarke.

Read the full story for free at Clarkesworld.

Semiramis

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in Clarkesworld Magazine, #57 June 2011. It can also be found in the anthologies Clarkesworld: Year Five (2013), edited by Sean Wallace and Neil Clarke, and The Mammoth Book of SF Stories by Women (2014), edited by Alex Dally MacFarlane.

Read the full story for free at Clarkesworld.

Small Medicine

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in the anthology Upgraded (2014), edited by Neil Clarke, and was reprinted in Lightspeed, July 2016. It can also be found in the anthology More Human Than Human: Stories of Androids, Robots, and Manufactured Humanity (2017), edited by Neil Clarke.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed.

Terrain

Genevieve Valentine

Terrain, by Genevieve Valentine, is a steampunk western about six diverse people living and working together on a farm outside a small town in Wyoming. The encroaching Union Pacific railroad wants the land, threatening their home and their livelihood, running a unique message service with mechanical "dogs" (actually looking more insectile) that can climb up mountains where the Pony Express cannot.


Read this story online for free at Tor.com.

The Girls at the Kingfisher Club

Genevieve Valentine

From award-winning author Genevieve Valentine, a "gorgeous and bewitching" (Scott Westerfeld) reimagining of the fairytale of the Twelve Dancing Princesses as flappers during the Roaring Twenties in Manhattan.

Jo, the firstborn, "The General" to her eleven sisters, is the only thing the Hamilton girls have in place of a mother. She is the one who taught them how to dance, the one who gives the signal each night, as they slip out of the confines of their father's townhouse to await the cabs that will take them to the speakeasy. Together they elude their distant and controlling father, until the day he decides to marry them all off.

The girls, meanwhile, continue to dance, from Salon Renaud to the Swan and, finally, the Kingfisher, the club they come to call home. They dance until one night when they are caught in a raid, separated, and Jo is thrust face-to-face with someone from her past: a bootlegger named Tom whom she hasn't seen in almost ten years. Suddenly Jo must weigh in the balance not only the demands of her father and eleven sisters, but those she must make of herself.

With The Girls at the Kingfisher Club, award-winning writer Genevieve Valentine takes her superb storytelling gifts to new heights, joining the leagues of such Jazz Age depicters as Amor Towles and Paula McClain, and penning a dazzling tale about love, sisterhood, and freedom.

The Gravedigger of Konstan Spring

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in Lightspeed, February 2012. It can also be found in the anthology The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2013, edited by Rich Horton.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed.

The Insects of Love

Genevieve Valentine

The Insects of Love, by Genevieve Valentine, is a dream-like science fiction/fantasy puzzle about two sisters and several possible realities. The only certainty is that one sister gets a tattoo and disappears into the desert. The surviving sister is obsessed with insects and believes her sister has left her clues as to her disappearance.


Read this story online for free at Tor.com.

The Nearest Thing

Genevieve Valentine

This novelette originally appeared in Lightspeed, August 2011. The story can also be found in the anthologies Year's Best SF 17 (2012), edited by David G. Hartwell and Kathryn Cramer, Robots: The Recent A. I. (2012), edited by Rich Horton and Sean Wallace and Twenty-First Century Science Fiction (2013), edited by David G. Hartwell and Patrick Nielsen Hayden.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed.

The Sandal-Bride

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in Fantasy Magazine, March 2011. It can also be found in the anthology The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2012, edited by Rich Horton.

Read the full story for free at Fantasy Magazine.

The Zeppelin Conductors' Society Annual Gentlemen's Ball

Genevieve Valentine

This short story originally appeared in Lightspeed, July 2010. It can also be found in the anthologies The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Five (2011), edited by Jonathan Strahan, Lightspeed: Year One (2011), edited by John Joseph Adams, and The Mammoth Book of Steampunk (2012), edited by Sean Wallace.

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed.

This Evening's Performance

Genevieve Valentine

This novelette originally appeared in the anthology The Mammoth Book of Dieselpunk (2015), edited by Sean Wallace. It can also be foudn in the anthology The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2016, edited by Rich Horton.

My Name Is Cybernetic Model XR389F, and I Am Beautiful

Monica Valentinelli

This short story originally appeared in Uncanny Magazine, Issue 25, November-December 2018.

Read the full story for free at Uncanny.

Paper Valentine

Brenna Yovanoff

The city of Ludlow is gripped by the hottest July on record. The asphalt is melting, the birds are dying, petty crime is on the rise, and someone in Hannah Wagnor's peaceful suburban community is killing girls.

For Hannah, the summer is a complicated one. Her best friend Lillian died six months ago, and Hannah just wants her life to go back to normal. But how can things be normal when Lillian's ghost is haunting her bedroom, pushing her to investigate the mysterious string of murders? Hannah's just trying to understand why her friend self-destructed, and where she fits now that Lillian isn't there to save her a place among the social elite. And she must stop thinking about Finny Boone, the big, enigmatic delinquent whose main hobbies seem to include petty larceny and surprising acts of kindness.

With the entire city in a panic, Hannah soon finds herself drawn into a world of ghost girls and horrifying secrets. She realizes that only by confronting the Valentine Killer will she be able move on with her life--and it's up to her to put together the pieces before he strikes again.

Bitch Planet, Vol. 1: Extraordinary Machine

Bitch Planet: Book 1

Kelly Sue DeConnick
Valentine De Landro

Eisner Award-nominated writer Kelly Sue DeConnick (Pretty Deadly, Captain Marvel) and Valentine De Landro (X-Factor) team up to bring you the premiere volume of Bitch Planet, a deliciously vicious riff on women-in-prison sci-fi exploitation.

In a future just a few years down the road in the wrong direction, a woman's failure to comply with her patriarchal overlords will result in exile to the meanest penal planet in the galaxy. When the newest crop of fresh femmes arrive, can they work together to stay alive or will hidden agendas, crooked guards, and the deadliest sport on (or off!) Earth take them to their maker?

Bitch Planet, Vol. 2: President Bitch

Bitch Planet: Book 2

Kelly Sue DeConnick
Valentine De Landro

A few years down the road in the wrong direction, a woman's failure to comply with her patriarchal overlords results in exile to the meanest penal planet in the galaxy. But what happened on Earth that this new world order came to pass in the first place? Return to the grim corridors of Auxiliary Compliance Outpost #2, to uncover the first clues to the history of the world as we know it? and meet PRESIDENT BITCH. Collects BITCH PLANET #6-10

Working for the Devil

Dante Valentine: Book 1

Lilith Saintcrow

When the Devil needs a rogue demon killed, who does he call? The Player: Necromance-for-hire Dante Valentine is choosy about her jobs. Hot tempered and with nerves of steel, she can raise the dead like nobody's business. But one rainy Monday morning, everything goes straight to hell. The Score: The Devil hires Dante to eliminate a rogue demon: Vardimal Santino. In return, he will let her live. It's an offer she can't refuse. The Catch: How do you kill something that can't die?

Dead Man Rising

Dante Valentine: Book 2

Lilith Saintcrow

'Dark fantasy has a new heroine.' --- SFXWhen the dead call, she answers.

Bounty hunting is a helluva job, but it pays the bills. And it lets Necromance Dante Valentine forget her issues---like struggling with her half-demon side and the memory of her lover's death.

Now psychics all over the city are being savagely murdered---and a piece of the past Dante thought she'd buried is stalking the night with a vengeance. Too bad she's got no way to tell which fiend--or friend--to trust. Or that her most horrifying nightmares are gathering to take one kick-ass bounty hunter down for the count.

But that's only the beginning. The Devil just called. He's looking for Dante's lover--the one he killed...

The Devil's Right Hand

Dante Valentine: Book 3

Lilith Saintcrow

Dante Valentine, Necromancer and bounty hunter, just wants to be left alone. But the Devil has other ideas. The Prince wants Dante. And he wants her now. And Dante and her lover, Japhrimel, have no choice but to answer the Prince's summons. And to fulfill a seemingly simple task: become the Devil's Right Hand, hunt down four demons that have escaped from Hell, and earn His gratitude. It's a shame that nothing is ever easy when it comes to the Devil. Because of course, he doesn't tell Dante the whole truth: there is a rebellion brewing in Hell. And there is a good chance that Lucifer is about to be pushed off the throne. But Dante is getting really tired of being pushed around. And this time, she might be angry enough to take on the Devil himself...

Saint City Sinners

Dante Valentine: Book 4

Lilith Saintcrow

Saint City has always been Dante Valentine's home. It's where she grew up, it's where her dead are buried, and it's where she learned to hunt. Now, one call from an old friend will bring her back to investigate a murder too close to home for anyone's comfort. But the one person she trusted has just betrayed her. Sometimes revenge is best served demon-hot...

To Hell and Back

Dante Valentine: Book 5

Lilith Saintcrow

The pulse-pounding finale to Lilith Saintcrow's urban fantasy series featuring Dante Valentine.

Dante Valentine has been through Hell. Literally. Her body shattered and her mind not far behind, she's dumped back into her own world to survive--or not--as a pawn in one of Lucifer's endless games. Unfortunately, he's just messed with the wrong Necromance. And this time she's mad enough to do something about it. This time, the Devil will pay.

Lord Valentine's Castle

The Majipoor Cycle: Book 1

Robert Silverberg

Treachery and wizardry run rampant under the reign of the mighty Pontifex, as both the rightful and the unworthy heirs to the throne anxiously await his demise. Korsibar, son of the current Coronal, plots with his twin sister and ambitious companions to seize the power of the Coronal when his father ascends to the throne of the Pontifex.

But the burdens of the crown and scepter exact a higher price than Korsibar is prepared to pay. His rival fights to take his appointed place as keeper of his beloved Majipoor... and to restore order to the utter chaos that has befallen their world.

Valentine Pontifex

The Majipoor Cycle: Book 3

Robert Silverberg

Treachery and wizardry run rampant under the reign of the mighty Pontifex, as both the rightful and the unworthy heirs to the throne anxiously await his demise. Korsibar, son of the current Coronal, plots with his twin sister and ambitious companions to seize the power of the Coronal when his father ascends to the throne of the Pontifex.

But the burdens of the crown and scepter exact more of a price than Korsibar is prepared to pay. His rival fights to take his appointed place as keeper of his beloved Majipoor...and to resbackse order to the utter chaos that has befallen their world.

Persona

The Persona Sequence: Book 1

Genevieve Valentine

In a world where diplomacy has become celebrity, a young ambassador survives an assassination attempt and must join with an undercover paparazzo in a race to save her life, spin the story, and secure the future of her young country in this near-future political thriller from the acclaimed author of Mechanique and The Girls at Kingfisher Club.

When Suyana, Face of the United Amazonia Rainforest Confederation, is secretly meeting Ethan of the United States for a date that can solidify a relationship for the struggling UARC, the last thing she expected was an assassination attempt. Daniel, a teen runaway turned paparazzi out for his big break, witnesses the first shot hit Suyana, and before he can think about it, he jumps into the fray, telling himself it's not altruism, it's the scoop. Now Suyana and Daniel are on the run--and if they don't keep one step ahead, they'll lose it all.

Icon

The Persona Sequence: Book 2

Genevieve Valentine

Suyana Sapaki survived an assassination attempt and has risen far higher than her opponents ever expected. Now she has to keep her friends close and her enemies closer as she walks a deadly tightrope--and one misstep could mean death, or worse--in this smart, fast-paced sequel to the critically acclaimed Persona.

A year ago, International Assembly delegate Suyana Sapaki barely survived an attempt on her life. Now she's climbing the social ranks, dating the American Face, and poised for greatness. She has everything she wants, but the secret that drives her can't stay hidden forever. When she quickly saves herself from a life-threatening political scandal, she gains a new enemy: the public eye.

Daniel Park was hoping for the story of a lifetime. And he got her. He's been following Suyana for a year. But what do you do when this person you thought you knew has vanished inside the shell, and dangers are building all around you? How much will Daniel risk when his job is to break the story? And how far will he go for a cause that isn't his?

Valentine's Rising

The Vampire Earth: Book 4

E. E. Knight

Returning to the Ozark Territories, freedom fighter David Valentine is shocked to find it overrun by vampiric Kurians under the command of the merciless Consul Solon. In a desperate gambit, Valentine leads a courageous group of soldiers on a mission to drive a spike into the gears of the Kurian Order. Valentine stakes life, honor, and the future of his home in a rebellion that sparks the greatest battle of his life.

Valentine's Exile

The Vampire Earth: Book 5

E. E. Knight

Welcome to the year 2072. Earth is under new management.

Possessed of an unnatural and legendary hunger, the Reapers came to Earth to establish a New Order built on the harvesting of enslaved human souls. They rule the planet. They thrive on the scent of fear. And if it's night, as sure as darkness, they will come.

In a valiant rebellion against the half-century Kurian occupation, the newly formed Texas and Ozark Republics have dealt the vampiric aliens their first major defeat. Resistance member David Valentine is revered as a hero, but he has a dangerous enemy within his own ranks, who will have him facing charges for abusing the Quisling prisoners-the human pawns of the Kurians. When fellow freedom fighter William Post is badly wounded, he asks Valentine to find his wife, who has vanished into the darkness of the Kurian Order. But what Valentine finds there will shake his sanity to its very core.

Valentine's Resolve

The Vampire Earth: Book 6

E. E. Knight

The Vampire Earth novels are character-driven speculative fiction adventure at its very best. Now national best-selling author E. E. Knight continues the thrilling journey of David Valentine, a man trying to survive in a New Order run by the alien Kurians and built on the harvesting of enslaved human souls.

It has been three years since David Valentine's forced exile from his friends and allies in the war against the Kurians. But that hasn't stopped him from fighting his own battles and his personal demons. Brought back into the fold by his old teacher, Duvalier, Valentine discovers that the Lightweavers, Earth's allied in the conflict, have all but vanished. Without their aid, mankind cannot possibly stand against the Reapers and other life-forms the Kurians use to subjugate the planet.Many of the Lightweavers are held captive by the Seattle overlord, a powerful Kurian who commands dozens of sublords in his thrall.

To free them, Valentine must trek across the Cascades and convince Adler, a legendary resistance fighter with a grudge against the Seattle Kurians, to join his cause. But Adler is something of an overlord himself, ruling his men with an iron fist and giving Valentine a new enemy to fight....

Vampire Junction

Valentine: Book 1

S. P. Somtow

Now acknowledged as one of the most important classics of twentieth-century gothic literarture, S.P. Somtow's tale of a twelve-year-old rock star vampire, his Jungian analyst, and the Wagnerian conductor who is his nemesis turned the entire genre upside down in the 1980s and is considered the ancestor of the "splatterpunk" movement. Vampire Junction has been voted one of the top forty horror books of all time. Timmy Valentine: "He'll steal your heart - and have it for breakfast!" 21st anniversary edition of this unforgettable classic of high-intensity horror.

Valentine

Valentine: Book 2

S. P. Somtow

Timmy Valentine is a vampire - he was created magically in an alchemical experiment performed in ancient Pompeii. But unlike most vampires of fiction, Timmy is not an adult - Timmy is forever and always an 11-year-old boy/rock star with a beautiful soprano voice and a face like an angel. This sequel to Vampire Junction finds Brian, PJ, and Terry 10 years after the disappearance of Timmy, remembering the terrible night in Junction and fighting the Gods of Chaos who believe Timmy is still alive.

Vanitas: Escape from Vampire Junction

Valentine: Book 3

S. P. Somtow

Vampire Junction, S. P. Somtow's groundbreaking novel of vampiric horror, introduced Timmy Valentine, a world-famous rock star with the body of a 12 year old boy... and the ageless soul of a bloodthirsty predator. Timmy returned in Valentine, in which he finally shed his undead curse forever. Or did he?

In Vanitas, Timmy Valentine has relinquished his immortality and transferred his vampiric essence to young Angel Todd. Timmy is now an ordinary boy, awakened at last from an ancient nightmare. His new album has just come out, but there's something missing. In a desperate bid to salvage his career, he goes on a world tour. Every stop, though, brings haunting memories of his inhuman past and terrifying manifestations of a blood-drenched future.