Group Read 27The Big Book of Science Fiction

Story #56 of 107: “Vaster Than Empires and More Slow” by Ursula K. Le Guin

Our group has read this story before, and I reviewed it for my essay “What Makes a Great SF Short Story?” I had quite a lot to say, so I don’t see any reason to repeat myself. But I will say it’s a solid 5-star story and enjoyed rereading it. Again, it makes me want to read or reread Le Guin’s Hainish series of novels. I’m retired and I still can’t find time to read everything I want.

We’ve just passed the 50% counter on my Kindle edition of The Big Book of Science Fiction. What a long journey so far. What a long way to go. I’m no longer reading a short story a day for the group, but just reporting on stories every other day for this anthology. I’m taking that day off to read stories I find on my own.

Paul is doing Christmas-related science fiction stories on those alternate days. I feel bad about skipping out on his group read. However, after Christmas he wants me to lead the group read for The Great SF Stories 25 (1963) edited by Isaac Asimov and Martin Greenberg. I’m looking forward to that. I started reading The Great SF Stories 1 (1939) in 2018 and I’m currently up to The Great SF Stories 18 (1956). The group voted for volume 25, so I’ll jump ahead. Thus, I’ll be back to reading and reporting on a story a day for the group.

The Sinister Science blog just finished reading the Great SF series. That’s quite an accomplishment. George Kelley blogged about reading the series a couple years ago. If you’re into old science fiction and love short stories, The Great SF Stories is a fun reading project. Unfortunately, the books are out-of-print and they’re starting to get pricey on the used book market. All 25 are available in the pdf format on the web if you search around. I don’t link to them because that might cause a take-down. Here’s my list of the stories with links to ISFDB, and my review of The Great SF Stories 1 (1939). Austin Beeman is also reviewing the series.

I’m hoping our Facebook group will eventually discuss all 25 volumes.

Main Page of Group Read

James Wallace Harris, 12/7/21

3 thoughts on ““Vaster Than Empires and More Slow” by Ursula K. Le Guin

  1. In the long run, a story a day (and the review for it) can be exhausting. At least if one‘s day is filled with other urgencies of daily life. That’s why I take it far slower than last year. Take care and don’t burn out on reviewing!


  2. I think I’ve read this but I can’t recall it clearly. When I get to Terry Carr’s first “The Best Science Fiction of the Year” (1972) in the not too distant future I’ll read it again–then maybe I’ll have something to say!

    Thanks for the shout out to my blog.


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