Androids & Aliens is Scott's third short story collection - eight sci fi and sci-fantasy shorts that run the gamut from cyborgs to (comedic) alien invasions:
Rise: The rise in sea levels caused by climate change swallowed Venice beneath the lagoon half a century ago. But what if we could bring it back?
Ping: I was a real estate agent by day, and a museum curator in the evening at a sci-fi museum. What I saw one night changed everything.
What the Rain Brings: Miriam struggles to make a living in post-climate-change Vancouver. But her friend Catalina has it even worse in the Arizona desert. So Miri hatches a plan.
High Seven: Zan dreams of making full reals - immersive live virtual reality skins - but his low score may doom him to a life of cheap coding.
Full Real: Dek's given up his life of spying for the city. But one more case awaits him. Will he regret it more if he takes it, or turns it down?
Shit City: The Bay Area is being walloped by a hurricane, and seventeen-year-old Jason Vasquez has been relocated to a refugee city in the Nevada Desert. Will it be temporary shelter, or change his life?
Firedrake: Kerry has always wondered about his deadly powers. But a mysterious bunch of violet roses starts him on the path to discovery - even if he's not sure he's going to like what he finds.
The Last Human Heart: I'm one of the Remainers, the few cyborg humans still living on this busted planet. But if my still-human heart finally gives out, I may not live to find out the truth about who I am.
This is the first time all of these stories have all been collected in one place, and the first publication of the Pacific Climate Tryptich - What the Rain Brings, High Seven, and Full Real - in any form.
Wallace Rinkelhaus on Amazon wrote:
I'm having a hard time finding good sci-fi to read after finishing most of the old and modern classics, so I'm glad I stumbled onto this book. These stories remind me of stuff I used to read in magazines like Analog and Asimov. The worlds this book creates are compelling enough that some of these stories made me angry that they aren't full length novels or even series. I've never quite understood the magic formula that makes really good short stories impactful and complete despite their length and yet make you yearn for more at the same time. Whatever it is, Coatsworth nails it.
I love Scott Coatsworth's latest collection of "eight sci fi and sci-fantasy shorts that run the gamut from cyborgs to (comedic) alien invasions" (back cover). I laughed and I cried, for broken and missing hearts, for hearts recovered, and love found and lost. I loved the golden threat of hope here, even if bad things happen. Thanks to climate change, hurricanes devastate the Bay area, and EF6 tornadoes completely an Idaho town. The US implodes.
In "Firedrake," Kerry, one of the Changed, has to deal his powers of fire-making. Then he receives violet roses--from who and why? And he begins a journey of self-discovery. "What the Rain Brings," Miriam is doing her best to survive, and help those who need it, in "post-climate change Vancouver' (backcover). But her friend, Catalina, is caught in a nightmare in Arizona. Can she help her? These are love stories, queer love stories, that celebrate the human spirit, and offer hope.
These stories are a tonic for the soul. Recommended.