Gunfight on Europa Station

Baen. Nov. 2021. 272p. ed. by David Boop. ISBN 9781982125721. pap. $16. SF
Elizabeth Moon, Alan Dean Foster, and more titans of the sci-fi genre contribute to this imaginative anthology, edited by essayist Boop. An alien law enforcement officer goes undercover as a cowboy to complete his mission. Two guns-for-hire are swept up in a mining revolution. An honorable captain protects a small family’s claim from outer-space pirates. A daring prospector on a deserted planet struggles to survive. An obsolete medical examiner embraces life in a space colony as he struggles to solve the mystery of the undead on a colonized planet. Together, the 12 stories are a fun and adventurous blend of outlaws and galactic marshals, pistols and rockets, bar fights and space battles, staked claims and sonic showdowns, and wagon trains and planetary stations. The unlikely heroes face the hardships of living off the land, seek answers to the great unknown, and pursue the hopes and promises of the frontier.
VERDICT The collection is great for those who want that sense of mystery, romance, and enterprise that is found in traditional Westerns; however, the work is made unique by cosmic settings and advanced technology. Fans of strong female characters, plucky innovators, and determined dreamers will enjoy these folkloric and sensational yarns.
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