Aces High (anthology)

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The 2004 ibooks printing of Aces High, featuring Jube the Walrus

Aces High is the second volume in the Wild Cards shared universe fiction series edited by George R. R. Martin. It was published in 1987 and dealt with two main plots that linked the stories in the volume: the arrival of the alien Swarm and a Masonic conspiracy led by a bookish villain named the Astronomer. In the end, these two storylines connect.

The title "Aces High" comes from the name of a popular and ritzy restaurant of the same name that caters to a clientele consisting solely of Aces — those victims of the Wild Card virus who gain "superpowers" as a result of their exposure — and features in several of the stories, along with its proprietor Hiram Worchester (aka Fatman).

Stories[edit]

Aces High contains the following short stories:

Story Author(s) Description
"Pennies From Hell" Lewis Shiner 1979. Fortunato.
"Jube" George R. R. Martin 1985. Introduces Jube the Walrus.
"Unto the Sixth Generation" Walter Jon Williams 1985. Introduces Modular Man.
"Ashes to Ashes" Roger Zelazny 1985. Croyd Crenson.
"If Looks Could Kill" Walton Simons 1986. Introduces James "Demise" Spector.
"Winter's Chill" George R. R. Martin 1986. Turtle.
"Relative Difficulties" Melinda M. Snodgrass 1986. Tachyon.
"With a Little Help From His Friends" Victor Milán 1986. Mark Meadows, aka Captain Trips.
"By Lost Ways" Pat Cadigan 1986. Introduces Water Lily and Kafka.
"Mr. Koyama's Comet" Walter Jon Williams March 1983 - June 1986.
"Half Past Dead" John J. Miller 1986. Yeoman.

The stories "Jube" and "Unto the Sixth Generation" occur as interludes between the other stories; the former throughout the entire book, the latter ending just after "If Looks Could Kill".

Preceded by
Wild Cards
Aces High
1987
Succeeded by
Jokers Wild