In The Wild Swans, Peg Kerr tells two thematically linked stories in alternate chapters. One is in England in 1689, where young Lady Eliza Grey is cast out of a wealthy family and searches for her 11 missing brothers, only to find that a curse periodically transforms them into swans. The other is in the early 1980s, in which young Elias Latham is thrown out of his house for being gay and journeys to New York City, where he finds a community that accepts him, only to watch it devastated by AIDS.
Constance Ash has edited an anthology of ''tales of high-tech reproduction'' called Not of Woman Born (Penguin, 272 pages, $6.99). Fourteen stories look at cloning, genetic engineering and other aspects of technologically altered human biology. At least one story in the collection, Sage Walker's Hunting Mother, has a furry theme. It tells the story of an elderly woman and her human/cougar son she designed for survival on a faraway world.