This is actually the first part of the Volume 2 - split into A & B because it's too big, according to editor's note. I recently got it - so "annotated" part of title is rather sparse yet. But it will be filled up - eventually!
Table of contents (11 stories, best first, unread at end).
- [novella] Eric Frank Russell's "... And Then There Were None" (A); download; Astounding, June 1951; science fiction, humor; later expanded into the novel "The Great Explosion": A gang of imperialists is frustrated by a planetful of Gandhian natives.
- [novel] H G Wells' "The Time Machine" (A); download text, audiobook; 1895; science fiction: Speculations on the twilight of humanity & of earth. Two things about the novel really touched me: first 2 chapters of preparations is among the best time travel stories I've seen; & when looking at humanity's twilight, he uses as model the current social divisions of society - haves & have nots, taken to their extreme conclusion. I've also collected some quotes from this novel.
- [novella] Henry Kuttner & C L Moore's "Vintage Season" (as by Lawrence O'Donnell) (A); Astounding, September 1946; science fiction: Uncaring future time travelers visit our time on vacation to enjoy a major disaster!
- [novelette] Poul Anderson's "Call Me Joe" (A); Astounding, April 1957; cyberpunk: Help for those with sound minds but with withered bodies - whether withered by an accident, violence, old age or disease.
- [novella] John W Campbell, Jr's "Who Goes There?" (as by Don A Stuart) (A); download; Astounding, August 1938; science fiction, thriller: Curious figuratively & inadvertently open the bottle to let the djinn out, & all hell breaks loose.
- [novella] Theodore Sturgeon's "Baby Is Three"; Galaxy, October 1952: While I've not read this stand alone version, I have read the fix up novel based on it - "More Than Human". Novelization is really 3 related but independent stories, second of them titled "Baby Is Three". I don't know how closely the version included in novel corresponds to this stand alone version, but novel includes a much better story - "The Fabulous Idiot". My ranking of this story here is based on the assumption that it's close enough to this story in novel version.
- [novella] Robert A Heinlein's "Universe" (A); Astounding, May 1941; science fiction: A very well written variation of a technology civilization falling on primitive times, & eventually a hero who sees the possibility of a different future. Story is set on a huge slower-than-light spaceship - originally headed for Centauri on a 60 year journey but now adrift in space for unknown reasons for hundreds of years; descendants of crew form this primitive society & a religion around the ship's documents they've inherited.
- [novelette] C M Kornbluth's "The Marching Morons" (A); Galaxy, April 1951; satire: A variation on "selling ice to Eskimos" theme. A no-morals man from our time ends up in a future where average IQ is 45, & there is an exclusive breed of smarter people confined to Antarctica. In a deal that promises to make him the ultimate dictator, this man helps the smart ones kill off rest of humanity by selling them a story that makes them want to march off to their death.
- [novelette] Jack Williamson's "With Folded Hands" (A); download MP3; Astounding, July 1947: Benign robots have turned humans into worthless beings with no hope. I actually don't like it's negativity much, but rating it B would have moved it below many stories far less well written!
- [novella] Lester del Rey's "Nerves" (A); Astounding, September 1942; science fiction: Description of a serious accident at a facility manufacturing nuclear products - relief & containing the damage. There is a super hero too. My only gripe is - it's much too long.
- [novelette] Cordwainer Smith's "The Ballad of Lost C'Mell" (B) Galaxy, October 1962; science fiction: A political story - probably modeled after the slavery years in the US, but told symbolically. A society where some have normal citizen rights; others are treated as disposable animals. A man from privileged group helps the underprivileged fight for their civil liberties.
Book is subtitled "The Greatest Science Fiction Novellas of All Time Chosen by the Members of The Science Fiction Writers of America".
Note: Terminology seems to have changed since publication of this book. It seems to call everything above 15,000 words "novella".
Related: SFWA's entire Science Fiction Hall of Fame series.