Friday, October 16, 2015

An Exile of the Heart, by Jay Lake

Clarkesworld, January 2015; 7,001 words
Rating: 1, Needs improvement

Teenage Trieste is the heir-apparent to the Earth-Luna station at the L1 point, but she falls afoul of her step-father and get exiled.

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

The story starts with infodumps, and after that it's all tell, no show. It reads like the outline for a story, not the real thing.

Royalty in space is always a hard sell. The plot here is driven entirely by the unreasonableness of the absolute ruler of the first station, leading one to disbelieve that such a person could hold such a position for very long. Then there's Trieste, whose military training apparently didn't include "follow orders" goes out without permission. Why didn't she worry about being shot by her own side? After that, Trieste isn't in control of herself, and, hence, isn't interesting.

The text has a number of what appear to be editing errors. For example, "The assassin had been stripped of his electronic stealth suit but [was] otherwise undisturbed in death" where the word "was" seems to have been edited out at some point.

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