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18 Wheels of Science Fiction Book Review

November 16, 2018 | Posted by Bryan Kristopowitz
18 Wheels of Science Fiction
8.5
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18 Wheels of Science Fiction Book Review  

18 Wheels of Science Fiction Book Review

18 Wheels of Science Fiction: A Long Haul Into the Fantastic

18WheelsofScienceFictionBookCover

Edited by Eric Miller
Published by Big Time Books
309 pages
Released October 10th, 2018

18 Wheels of Science Fiction: A Long Haul Into the Fantastic is the latest anthology from writer, editor, and Hollywood transportation coordinator extraordinaire Eric Miller, who gave us the Hell Comes to Hollywood parts 1 and 2 short story anthologies, and 18 Wheels of Horror, the sort of horror companion to 18 Wheels of Science Fiction. Like that anthology, 18 Wheels of Science Fiction features stories about the world of trucking, but this time with a science fiction twist instead of a straight horror approach. That isn’t to say that some of the stories aren’t horrifying. They are. But there’s also a bit of hope mixed in with the doom and gloom of the potential and coming future, which is what good science fiction does sometimes.

The anthology features stories from writers such as Lucio Rodriguez (“Q-Bits”), Michael Bailey (“Essential Oils”), Jeff Seeman (Speed Trap”), and Alvaro Zinos-Amaro (“Big Rig, Big Rip”). Miller also has a story, “Drive,” which is pretty damn good. Lisa Morton’s story, “Job No. 34264,” is a fascinating sort of log conversation that I thought was a script when I first read it. It isn’t. It’s a recording of a human driver, a robot (called a “rebot”), and a trainee. It doesn’t go where you expect it to, especially when it’s just a conversation.

My favorite story in the set is “Human, Trafficking,” by Michael Paul Gonzalez. It’s a story about a human truck driver who works for what seems like a great company that treats its employees well. However, as the story progresses and bad things keep happening to the driver, he finds out just how great the company in question is. It’s a perfect example of someone being consumed by their job, whether he likes it or not. The story freaked me out, actually. What happens in the story could happen one day, as machines and humanity grow closer and closer.

Now, “Human, Trafficking” may be my favorite of the book’s eighteen stories, but all of the stories are worth reading. There isn’t a dud in the bunch, and that’s rare in the world of short story anthologies (that’s been my experience, anyway). Miller knows how to pick stories and compile a worthwhile read. And, yes, 18 Wheels of Science Fiction is worth picking up and checking out. If you’re a sci-fi fan, a short story nerd, or some amalgamation of both, this is the book for you.

What the heck will editor Miller come up with next? I can’t wait to find out.

Read 18 Wheels of Science Fiction. Read it, read it, read it.

Buy 18 Wheels of Science Fiction here. You can get a physical copy or a digital copy, if that’s your thing.

Check out the Big Time Books website here, Facebook page here, and official Twitter page here.

8.5
The final score: review Very Good
The 411
18 Wheels of Science Fiction: A Long Haul Into the Fantastic is yet another terrific anthology from writer and editor Eric Miller. Featuring eighteen short stories about trucking with a science fiction twist, there isn’t a bad story in the bunch. If you’re an avid science fiction reader, this anthology is definitely something you’ll want to track down and get. If you’re an adventurous reader looking for something “different,” 18 Wheels is worth checking out. Some of the stories will make you smile, some will make you cringe, and all of them will make you think. It’s what good science fiction does. And 18 Wheels of Science Fiction is damn good science fiction. Read this anthology!
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