I'm a few stories into the last Asimov's
, and I'm rather disappointed. While editorial content is quite good (if you disregard the probably necessary but quite boring editorial on Asimov's staff), the stories I have read are not up to par. For starters, it's a double issue, which formerly, featured the likes of Silverberg, Swarnwick, Connie Willies, and so on. The only famous
name in this cover is Geoffrey A. Landis, who is good, but not what you would call top-tier.
And then, the stories I have read are quite bad. "Memory work", by L. Timmel Duchamp, is boring and its plotline has probably been written a thousand times. "Nightmare", by M. Bennardo, is not sci-fi per se, but fantasy (if I wanted to read fantasy, I'd subscribe to F&SF instead), and not quite good at that. A father who's scared at a monster fair. Big deal. And the next one, "Out of the box", by Steve Martinez, is probably the best of the three, but is difficult to understand at the beginning and leaves many questions. The "Pericles" story that follows, I haven't read it yet, but I still remember an Spartacus story by the same author, Lois Tilton, which was booooring, featuring basically a dialog between two romans. And while uchronies of that epoch are OK, you only enjoy them if you know very well the period.
I don't know if it's the spirit of the times in science fiction. Most big names are quitting, or no longer write short stories; only up-and-coming authors send their stories to be published in Asimov's. It's a pity, but that's how things are.