Best of Catherynne M. Valente, Volume One

Best of Catherynne M. Valente, Volume One

Illustration By Alyssa Winans

Dust jacket illustrations by Alyssa Winans.

Note: There is a limit of one copy per person/household. If you've bought a copy, please do not order another.

We’re pleased to present The Best of Catherynne M. Valente, Volume One, which gathers 300,000 words of her singular fiction, including long-out-of-print tales and 80,000 words never before collected.

About the Book:

The celebrated author of FairylandSpace Opera, and much more, Catherynne M. Valente is also known for her stunning prose and captivating worldbuilding. From life on Mars to the zombified streets of Augusta, Maine, she has taken readers on unforgettable journeys for two decades.

Subterranean Press is proud to present: The Best of Catherynne M. Valente, Volume One, the first comprehensive collection of Valente’s short fiction, soaring through eighteen years of pushing the edges of storytelling.

Among her award-winning stories, you’ll find everything from melancholy robot girls to Eurydice and Orpheus; from detectives in Purgatory to time-traveling squirrels to a very different Santa Claus; from the grey coast of Washington to Alice’s Wonderland. 

Valente’s work is an open, beating heart, ready to welcome you in to its darkness and its light.

Limited: 250 signed numbered copies with a different dust jacket than the trade edition, and bound in a different material

Trade: Fully cloth bound hardcover edition


From Publishers Weekly (Starred Review):

“Valente (Space Opera) shows off her versatility in this mind-blowing collection of 45 stories. The standouts are an irreverent take on the Cthulhu Mythos and a thought-provoking look at artificial intelligence… The result is an impressive showcase for a gifted author who never plays it safe.”


From Locus:

“In a career of less than two decades, Catherynne M. Valente seems to have made an outsized im­pact on fantasy and SF, despite never quite fitting in to any movement or trend, and never quite getting predictable—except, perhaps, for her unabashed love of language… While Valente’s contagious passion for language seems unabated in these recent works, it also seems more fully under control, as though she’s learned to trust the tale itself—and the best of those tales are true gems.”


Table of Contents:

Left Ventricle

  • The Consultant
  • The Difference Between Love and Time
  • A Buyer’s Guide to Maps of Antarctica
  • White Lines on a Green Field
  • The Wolves of Brooklyn
  • Reading Borges in Buenos Aires
  • Days of Flaming Motorcycles
  • One Breath, One Stroke
  • Thirteen Ways of Looking at Space/Time
  • Mouse Koan 


Right Atrium

  • The Melancholy of Mechagirl
  • The Future Is Blue
  • The Sin-Eater
  • The Sun in Exile
  • Color, Heat, and the Wreck of the Argo
  • The Perfect Host
  • How to Become a Mars Overlord
  • Fade to White
  • Secretario
  • Twenty-Five Facts About Santa Claus
  • In the Future When All’s Well
  • Planet Lion


Left Atrium

  • A Great Clerk of Necromancy
  • Urchins, While Swimming
  • L’Espirit D’Escalier
  • The Lily and the Horn
  • The Long Goodnight of Violet Wild
  • Palimpsest
  • The Red Girl
  • The Flame After the Candle
  • The Wedding
  • The Bread We Eat in Dreams
  • The Secret of Being a Cowboy


Right Ventricle

  • Aquaman and the Duality of Self/Other, America, 1985
  • A Fall Counts Anywhere
  • A Delicate Architecture
  • Golubash, or Wine-Blood-War-Elegy
  • Badgirl, the Deadman, and the Wheel of Fortune
  • Down and Out in R’lyeh
  • The Shoot-Out at Burnt Corn Ranch Over the Bride of the World
  • No One Dies in Nowhere
  • The Limitless Perspective of Master Peek, Or, the Luminescence of Debauchery
  • Daisy Green Says I Love You
  • Silently and Very Fast
  • What the Dragon Said: A Love Story


Alyssa Winans
Catherynne M. Valente
800 pages
United States
In Print