There are sixteen stories, an excerpt from book three in the Dandelion Dynasty series, The Veiled Throne, and a new novelette. I sometimes skip the preface, (mainly when I am itching to start reading a favorite author like Ken Liu) and I am so glad I took time to read it this time. Not only did Liu explain how and why he selected stories, he mentioned that these stories are best understood if read in order. Since I usually jump around, that was very good advice.
The stories are so varied in subject. Some I loved, some not so much. My favorites were ones that addressed contemporary issues, like global warming and family relationships. I had a hard time wrapping my brain around human consciousness uploaded to computers, but I liked the stories anyway. My favorite was the title story, “The Hidden Girl,” a story of a Chinese girl kidnapped when she was ten and trained to become an assassin. “Memories of My Mother” and “Seven Birthdays” were also among my favorites. Ken Liu writes wonderful sci-fi and fantasy, and I found all of the stories thought provoking, even the ones I didn’t like so much.
eGalley review Publication date 2.25.2020