Friday, October 16, 2015

A Universal Elegy, by Tang Fei (translated by John Chu)

Clarkesworld, January 2015; 6,898 words
Rating: 2, Not recommended

Irina leaves the solar system to be with Hull, a "man" he's known just two weeks, who won't treat him like a mentally-ill person.

Mini-Review (click to view--possible spoilers)

Pro: Irina starts the journey broken and returns whole.

Con: The story breaks suspension of disbelief too many times to be enjoyable. Aliens where each cell is an independent mind. Disembodied hands that work nevertheless. A green flame that eats people. And is Irina male or female? He has an identical twin brother, but uses a female name. The story never explains it.

There are lots of typos and grammatical errors which detract as well. The names are also a distraction. Dieresis is the two dots over a letter in French, e.g. Noël. The Ramayana is a Hindu holy scripture.

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