Saturday, December 26, 2015

Malf, by David D. Levine

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(Hard SF) In three days, Jorge's processed asteroid arrives on Earth, and it will make him wealthy enough to retire. But three days is a long time. (8,300 words; Time: 27m)

Rating: ★★★★☆, Recommended

"Malf," by (edited by Bryan Thomas Schmidt), appeared in Mission: Tomorrow (RSR review), published on by .

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

Pro: The story nicely sets us up to expect problems with the "package," emphasizing over and over how old the hardware and software are, and how the rocket sat at the cape in the heat and humidity. It also does a great job of showing us what a responsible guy Jorge is. At the end, when the thruster fails and Jorge throws his investment away, both events ring true.

Con: It's really hard to believe that this wouldn't be very tightly regulated.

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