“The Errata” by K. A. Teryna, translated from the Russian by Alex Shvartsman (Asimov’s, March/April).
“Incommunicado” by Andrej Kokoulin, translated from the Russian by Alex Shvartsman (Analog, March/April).
Hospital by Han Song, translated from the Chinese by Michael Berry (AmazonCrossing, March 1)
A twisted, wildly imaginative tale of one man’s mysterious illness and his journey through a dystopian hospital system. When Yang Wei travels to C City for work, he expects nothing more than a standard business trip. A break from his day-to-day routine, a good paycheck, a nice hotel―nothing too extravagant, of course. No fuss, but all the amenities. But this is where his problems begin. A complimentary bottle of mineral water from the hotel minibar results in sudden and debilitating stomach pain, followed by unconsciousness. When he wakes three days later, things don’t improve; they get worse. With no explanation, the hotel forcibly sends him to a hospital for examination. There, he receives no diagnosis, no discharge date…just a diligent guide to the labyrinthine medical system he’s now circulating through. Armed with nothing but his own confusion, Yang Wei travels deeper into the inner workings of the hospital and the secrets it’s hiding from the patients. As he seeks escape and answers, one man’s illness takes him on a quest through a corrupt system and his own troubled mind.
Assassin of Reality by Marina and Sergey Dyachenko, translated from the Russian by Julia Meitov Hersey (Harper Voyager, March 14)
The eagerly anticipated sequel to the highly acclaimed Vita Nostra takes readers to the next stage in Sasha Samokhina’s journey in a richly imagined world of dark academia in which grammar is magic—and not all magic is good. In Vita Nostra, Sasha Samokhina, a third-year student at the Institute of Special Technologies, was in the middle of taking the final exam that would transform her into a part of the Great Speech. After defying her teachers’ expectations, Sasha emerges from the exam as Password, a unique and powerful part of speech. Accomplished and ready to embrace her new role, she soon learns her powers threaten the old world, and despite her hard work, Sasha is set to fail. However, Farit Kozhennikov, Sasha’s dark mentor, finds a way to bring her out of the oblivion and back to the Institute for his own selfish purposes. Subsequently, Sasha must correct her mistakes before she is allowed to graduate and is forced to do what few are asked and even less achieve: to succeed and reverberate—becoming a part of the Great Speech and being one of the special few who dictate reality. If she fails, she faces a fate far worse than death: the choice is hers. Years have passed around the Institute—and the numerous realities that have spread from Sasha’s first failure—but it is only her fourth year of learning what role she will play in shaping the world. Her teachers despise and fear her, her classmates distrust her, and a growing love—for a young pilot with no affiliation to the school—is fraught because a relationship means leverage, and Farit won’t hesitate to use it against her. Planes crash all the time. Which means Sasha needs to rewrite the world so that can’t happen…or fail for good.