Unless otherwise indicated, the fiction I read this week came from Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet 22.
"Love Might Be Too Strong a Word" by Charlie Anders. This is the best alien interspecies love-story I've ever read. Ever. EVER. 5 out of 5.
"Going to France" by Maureen F. McHugh. Great story but I'll be honest--I didn't quite get the end. 4 out of 5.
"Getting Closer" by Steven Millhauser. (THE NEW YORKER, January 3, 2011). Sorry, but there's no way I'll ever buy that any nine year-old is as contemplative as the one in the story. 2.5 out of 5.
"American Dreamers" by Caleb Wilson. Very intricate character studies. Just not enough for me narratively. 3 out of 5.
"Mike's Place" by David J. Schwartz. Nice, tight story. Has a similar atmosphere to one of my favorites, Keret's "Kneller's Happy Campers." 4 out of 5.
"The Camera & the Octopus" by Jeremie McKnight. A wonderful grown-up bedtime story. 4 out of 5.
"Escape" by Cara Spindler. I was turned off by the structure of the piece initially, but I was glad I stuck with it. 4 out of 5.
"Away" by William Alexander. Very nice story about an almost-stranger in an almost-strange land. 5 out of 5.