Saturday, October 24, 2015

Ninety-Five Percent Safe, by Caroline M. Yoachim

Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine, January 2015; ~5,600 words
Rating: 4, Recommended

Crowded into a huge, underground city, survivors of a nuclear war can opt to take a one-way trip through a wormhole and settle on another planet. But 5% of the pods get destroyed.

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

Pro: Nicole's determination to get out of her environment makes it clear, early on, that she's definitely going to go. The story makes it clear that the family situation isn't so bad that the adults would find it the no-brainer decision that she does. Only at the end do we realize that she really loved her mom, but when that sinks in, it's very powerful.

Con: You'd think there would be protections to keep people from bringing kids into the pods. Nicole can't be the first runaway. Her decision to take her 3-year-old brother with her makes her a much less attractive character.

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