Results of the Philip K. Dick Award in the year 2005.
In the 23rd century, Nasir Deepra finds fun by dropping into minor wars. High-tech gear fully protects him, but nothing can protect him from a woman named Sheeba—and her voracious lust for danger.
In the far future, humanity has engineered itself into new forms capable of spaceflight, the terraforming of planets, and the exploration of the deepest oceans. Evolution has reached a new zenith, and it seems there is no environment we cannot conquer. But when interstellar voyager meets a piece of alien technology in a head-on collision, the results go to show that the synthesis of the human race and its own technology is not the first or the most advanced of its kind in the galaxy.
At age four, Yuri Kirov watched his homecolony destroyed by the alien enemy. By six,he was a wounded soul, fending for himself in a desolate refugee camp, and still a child when the pirates found him. Now 24, Yuri is a killer, a spy, a blackmailer, and a pirate captain—doing life in prison. That is until Earthhub Black Ops agents decide to make Yuri their secret weapon in a covert interstellar power grab. Released from jail, but on a leash to the government, Yuri is more trapped than ever. Controlled by men even more ruthless than the brigands he’s ordered to betray, Yuri is back again in deep space where his survival depends on a dangerous act: trusting a stranger’s offer of help.
In the far future, the Heliothane Dominion is triumphant in the solar system, after a bitter war with their Umbrathane progenitors. But some of the Umbrathane have escaped into the distant past, where they can position themselves to wreak havoc across time and undo their defeat. The most fanatical of them is the superhuman Cowl, more monstrous than any of the creatures outside his prehistoric redoubt.
Cowl sends his terrifying hyperdimensional pet, the torbeast, hunting through all the timelines for human specimens. It sheds its scales—each one an organic time machine—where its master orders. Anyone who picks one up is dragged back to the dawn of time, where Cowl awaits. Then the beast can feed, growing ever larger…
In our own near-future, Tack is one of U-gov’s programmable killers. When a scale latches onto him, his doom seems inevitable,…[more]
Once the Queendom of Sol was a glowing monument to humankind’s loftiest dreams. Ageless and immortal, its citizens lived in peaceful splendor. But as Sol buckled under the swell of an immorbid population, space itself literally ran out….
Conrad Mursk has returned to Sol on the crippled starship Newhope. His crew are the frozen refugees of a failed colony known as Barnard’s Star. A thousand years older, Mursk finds Sol on the brink of rebellion, while a fanatic necro cult is reviving death itself. Now Mursk and his lover, Captain Xiomara “Xmary” Li Weng, are sent on a final, desperate mission by King Bruno de Towaji-one of the greatest terraformers of the ages-to literally crush the moon. If they succeed, they’ll save billions of lost souls. If they fail, they’ll strand humanity between death-and something unimaginably worse….
Ray Croft may or may not have been a genius. On his death he left behind a court case that could destroy everything he had worked for, and a rival who’s about to live out Roy’s dream, but turning himself into a machine. He also left a special mystery which only one person alive can solve.