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Conflicts - Ian Whates, Neal Asher, Chris Beckett, Keith Brooke, Eric Brown, David L. Clements, Michael Cobley, Una McCormack, Jim Mortimore, Andy Remick, Rosanne Rabinowitz This is an anthology of contemporary SF short stories thematically linked by conflict. Although that is conflict in quite a broad sense; these aren't all tales of war and battle. In fact, I was suprised by the range in this collection and I found myself generally favouring the more thought provoking and subtle stories than the more overtly action oriented ones.

All of the stories in this collection are new and I have never read any of these authors before which is precisely what I was looking for when I was deciding on my next anthology to read. Generally I find myself reading too much older fiction and I like to force myself to read something contemporary every now and then. I say force myself but this was hardly a chore to read, most of the stories being of a high standard.

The ones I particularly liked were "The Maker's Mark" by Michael Cobley, a series of fragments that piece together to reveal an intriguing game of cat and mouse, "Sussed" by Keith Brooke, a story that keeps changing direction everytime you think you know where it's going, "War Without End" by Una McCormack, a thought provoking story about morality in war, "In the Long Run" by David L. Clements, a mind bending story of mankinds struggle for survival against an information plague, and "Songbirds" by Martin Sketchley, which was a bleak yet compelling account of an alien invasion seen through the eyes of a teenage girl.

Now I hear there is a follow up to this anthology called "Further Conflicts" also edited by Ian Whates. After enjoying this one so much, I am deeply tempted to read that as well.