Boys, Beasts, & Men


My short story collection “Boys, Beasts, & Men,” published by Tachyon in June of 2022! Featuring an introduction by my hero the incredible Amal El-Mohtar. [ /swoon ]

“Miller’s sheer talent shines through in abundance… an outrageous journey which skilfully blends genres and will haunt you with its original, poetic voices as much as its victims, villains, and treasure trove of leading actors. ” – Grimdark Magazine

“Loneliness, manhood, and ferocious queer joy… thick with both the tenderness and ugliness of imperfect relationships.” – Publishers Weekly (one of their “Most Anticipated Books” of Spring 2022!)

“Highly recommended for any reader interested in speculative fiction that concerns itself with queer themes, particularly messy or emotional ones.” – Booklist (starred review)

“If you’re not reading Sam J. Miller, you’re seriously missing out.” — Nathan Ballingrud, author of Wounds and North American Lake Monsters

Here’s the Table of Contents:

  1. Allosaurus Burgers
  2. 57 Reasons for the Slate Quarry Suicides
  3. We Are the Cloud
  4. Conspicuous Plumage
  5. Shattered Sidewalks of the Human Heart
  6. Shucked
  7. The Beasts We Want to Be
  8. Calved
  9. When Your Child Strays from God
  10. Things With Beards
  11. Ghosts of Home
  12. The Heat of Us: Notes Toward an Oral History
  13. Angel, Monster, Man
  14. Sun in an Empty Room

2022 BookPage Most Anticipated Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Literary Hub Best Sci-Fi and Fantasy Books
Buzzfeed Amazing New Science Fiction And Fantasy Beach Reads
Gizmodo New Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Horror Books for Your Summer Reading Pleasure

The collection includes tales that have never seen the light of day before, including an original framing narrative told in super-short vignettes before and after every story!

In Nebula Award-winning author Sam J. Miller’s devastating debut short-fiction collection, featuring an introduction by Amal El-Mohtar, queer infatuation, inevitable heartbreak, and satisfying revenge seamlessly intertwine. Whether innocent, guilty, or not even human, the boys, beasts, and men roaming through Miller’s gorgeously-crafted worlds can destroy you—yet leave you longing for them even more.

“[Miller] will tear your heart in two and then gently place the pieces back inside your chest.”

A foster teen who is capable of controlling the ambient digital cloud falls in love with a clever con man. Luring bullies to a quarry, a boy takes clearly-enumerated revenge through unnatural powers of suggestion. In the aftermath of a shapeshifting alien invasion, a survivor fears that he brought something out of the Arctic to infect the rest of the world. A rebellious group of queer artists create a new identity that transcends even the anonymity of death.

“…Writing that walks the knife’s edge of fear and excitement. Boys, Beasts & Men is a collection of 14 stories that perfectly captures the desperate intensity of love, and is an excellent introduction to a talented writer with wildly varied interests.” – Shelf Awareness (starred review) 

“Heartbreaking, world-shattering, and too timely for words, Boys, Beasts, & Men is a locked treasure chest fetched from the bottom of a forbidden lake. The voices for these stories were so brilliantly chosen that you’ll have a hard time not connecting with each and every character. No skips.” – Powell’s Books

“In these stories @sentencebender writes about people on the margins and in transition, both capturing a sense of uncertainty and horror while immersing us in these worlds with sensitivity and care.” – Carrie Vaughn

“Sam Miller is my hero: a fearless visionary whose stories are at once vivid, electrifying, brutal, and full of heart. Oh, the heat of them.” — Sarah Pinsker, author of A Song For A New Day and Sooner or Later Everything Falls Into the Sea

“This is the collection you are looking for. Explosive, careening, shape-shifting tales… haunting and defiantly tender.”⠀- Ben Loory, author of Tales of Falling and Flying

“The stories in this collection offer a nuanced and beautiful exploration of masculinity and the many faces of love, touching on romance, desire, family, and friendship, all presented through the lens of the fantastic—with literally mind-altering drugs, resurrected dinosaurs, near-future worlds in post environmental collapse, and of course, monsters.” — A. C. Wise, The Kissing Booth Girl and Other Stories

“In these memorable pieces, Miller wields his efficient, unpretentious prose to create indelible impressions of moments, characters and twists. None of these characters or settings ever feel stale; none of the plot points hang around longer than they’re welcome. Miller deliberately leaves narrative gaps, inviting readers to imagine for themselves what fills those spaces while also encouraging them to find beauty even in the most harrowing times. Through every timeline, every cinematic reference (of which there are many) and speculative monstrosity, Boys, Beasts & Men is a reminder that stories matter, especially the ones we tell ourselves.” BookPage

“Even in the darkest of these perfectly crafted stories, Sam Miller’s tragic boys yearn to be good instead of bad, strong instead of weak, whole instead of broken. May your heart ache with love for every doomed one of them; I know mine did.” — Andy Davidson, author of The Boatman’s Daughter

“Deliciously strange, sexy, provocative short fiction… Even while wrestling with big, gnarly themes, though, Miller holds onto a strong sense of queer futurity rooted in pleasure and joy. Ultimately, the collected stories of Boys, Beasts & Men overflow with a relentless queer presence. I resonate with the book’s artistic sincerity, as well as its openness to desire, to horny risk and ferocious joy, to the “everything all at once” mess of gay life.” –

“It’s a superb roundup of a prolific author’s short stories: tales that deal with complicated, messy lives of people trying to make their way through life, faced with uncertain and dangerous worlds. Essentially, a world that we find ourselves facing every time we wake up in the morning… a stellar example of the power that a couple of thousand words can hold over you.” – Andrew Liptak

“The fantasy and sci-fi elements carefully complement the central characters’ relationships and emotions. This leads to some compelling story-telling, and each tale has a distinct flavour.” – British Fantasy Society

“Throughout the collection, Miller’s incredible ability to combine heightened emotional stakes with current social issues is on keen display.” – Strange Horizons

“The book’s vigorous prose strikes a balance between imaginative twists, strong character development, and relatable dilemmas. Its most affecting tales resonate on both political and personal levels. Finding danger and humanity in their characters, the short stories of Boys, Beasts & Men marry emotional epiphanies with violence, resulting in imaginative, stirring meditations on LGBTQ+ struggles and acceptance.” – Foreword Reviews

“All 14 of these brilliant, character-driven short stories are perfectly crafted, subtly altering reality using SFF elements while managing to fully explore the repercussions of doing so with the conciseness a short story requires.” – Buzzfeed

In these fourteen previously-uncollected short stories, Sam J. Miller (Blackfish CityThe Art of Starving) takes his place alongside Carmen Maria Machado, Carson McCullers, and Jeff VanderMeer, bringing his savage wit, unrelenting candor, and lush imagery to the short story form.