Sunday, November 15, 2015

Twelve Tomorrows 2016, edited by Bruce Sterling

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(SF) MIT Technology Review's third science fiction anthology with visionary stories of the near future inspired by today's new technologies. (79,600 words; Time: 4h:25m)

Rating: ★★☆☆☆, Not Recommended

"Twelve Tomorrows 2016," edited by Bruce Sterling, published on by .

Symbolically, Twelve Tomorrows actually contains only eleven stories. Three of the stories have no proper ending, two have no plot at all, and one isn't even science fiction/fantasy. Only one story in the whole volume is actually a good read. Very disappointing.

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5- & 4-Star Stories: 1; Estimated Time: 28m (9K words)
Recommended By Stories: 2; Estimated Time: 54m (16K words)
Total Stories: 11; Estimated Time: 4h:25m (80K words)
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Rating: 5 -> Hugo-worthy

Rating: 4 -> Recommended

It Takes More Muscles To Frown by Ned Beauman  Time: 28m (9K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
The narrator, a blond American man, works for a Mexican oil company and leaks information to the cartels. He beats their lie detector tests using special implants in his face.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR:4 LTilton GDozois

Rating: 3 -> Average

All The Childhood You Can Afford by Daniel Suarez  Time: 30m (9K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
In Gavin's world, children have to pay for everything, and often can't even afford to be born until long after their parents are dead. He's 16 today, in a dead-end school that doesn't teach him what he really wants to know.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]      
Boxes by Nick Harkaway  Time: 11m (3K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
Tanya Sobel has lost her husband, but she wants to hold onto the medical devices that had supported his life.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]      
Life's A Game by Charles Stross  Time: 15m (5K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
Arrested in a foreign country, a UK game developer tries to explain to his lawyer why he shouldn't be charged with war crimes despite certain problems with his latest product.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]      
The New Us by Pepe Rojo  Time: 15m (5K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
In a chaotic near-future Mexico, a young woman has problems with experimental implants she was paid to try out. But finding the company responsible proves challenging.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]      

Rating: 2 -> Not Recommended

All-Natural Organic Microbes by Annalee Newitz  Time: 17m (5K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
In the near future, Sandy Green works for a fading news site but dreams of getting a fellowship so she can write an expose of a health-care scam.
Consolation by John Kessel  Time: 25m (8K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
At the end of the 21st century, when climate change has shattered the US and much of the north has joined Canada, three people are affected by what appears to be a terrorist attack.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: SFEP GDozois RHorton
The Internet Of Things Your Mother Never Told You by Jo L. Walton  Time: 30m (9K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
Eledy is 12, lives in London, suffers from ennui, and likes to hack things with her friend Farah.

Rating: 1 -> Needs Improvement

The Design Doyenne Defeats The Dullness by Paola Antonelli  Time: 25m (8K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
Laetitia is a designer in a 2060s world that found science and technology to be dull. She urges people to take more risks.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [1]      
The Lexicography Of An Abusive But Divine Relationship With The World by Ilona Gaynor  Time: 18m (5K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
From the story itself: "This text relays the thoughts of an unremarkable woman, whose un-profound influence has ceased to effect the slighted of causes."
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [1]      

Rating: Not Rated

The Ancient Engineer by Bruce Sterling  Time: 48m (15K words)  IssueTwelve Tomorrows 2016
In this fine historical fiction, about 145 AD, Julius Verus, a Roman engineer, heads back to his home village, guided by the marvelous celestial computer of Archimedes.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [0]      

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