Thursday, December 24, 2015

War Stories from the Future, edited by August Cole

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(Military SF) These stories describe various types of future warfare from the perspectives of soldiers, civilians, and support staff. (30,600 words; Time: 1h:42m)

Rating: ★★☆☆☆, Not Recommended

"," edited by August Cole, published on by .

Scenarios, Not Stories

Out of nine original stories, nothing rated above three stars, and four were one-star stories. The book is offered for free, and that probably explains the lack of serious editorial attention to the contents.

It is possible that some of the non-stories (ones that read like Wikipedia entries with a few lines of dialogue mixed in) really were what the editors were shooting for. These are "stories" that outline some ideas of how a future conflict might go, but which make no serious attempt to introduce real characters. "Scenarios" might better describe them. Regardless, the results don't make for pleasant reading.

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5- & 4-Star Stories: 0;  Estimated Time: 00m (0K words)
Recommended By  Stories: 1;  Estimated Time: 16m (5K words)
Total Stories: 9;  Estimated Time: 1h:42m (31K words)
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Rating: 5 -> Hugo-worthy


Rating: 4 -> Recommended


Rating: 3 -> Average

A Stopped Clock by Madeline Ashby  Time: 16m (5K words)  IssueWar Stories from the Future 
(Military SF) An elderly pair of food vendors in a near-future Seoul, Korea cope with increasingly troublesome malfunctions in the city's cyber infrastructure.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: GDozois
Codename: Delphi by Linda Nagata  Time: 17m (5K words)  IssueWar Stories from the Future 
(Military SF) Sitting in front of an array of monitors, Karin supports combat teams with intel from drones and AIs. In two years, she's never lost a soldier, but tonight is going to be busy.
From a Remove by Alec Meden  Time: 08m (3K words)  IssueWar Stories from the Future 
(Military SF) Thrilling story set ~100 years from now where a young woman flies orbital combat missions for a "nation" that only exists on the Internet.

Rating: 2 -> Not Recommended

A Visit to Weizenbaum by Jamie Metzl  Time: 08m (3K words)  IssueWar Stories from the Future 
(Military SF) A soldier on an isolated drone base chats with a psychologist about his online love affair.
Article I, Section 8, Clause 11 by Ken Liu  Time: 12m (4K words)  IssueWar Stories from the Future 
(Military SF) In the near future, a US Senator finds a unique, nonviolent way to respond to apply pressure to trouble-making countries.

Rating: 1 -> Needs Improvement

Another Day of Infamy by Ashley Henley  Time: 01m (400 words)  IssueWar Stories from the Future 
(Military SF) In 2041, the U.S. President issues a declaration of war.
ANTFARM by August Cole  Time: 11m (4K words)  IssueWar Stories from the Future 
(Military SF) In the mid-21st Century, Captain Aaron Fung flies sorties in support of ground troops in a war in Yemen. His own AI and crowd-sourced support is more problematic.
(Military SF) Newspaper article describes the events that led to a cyberwar between the US and Russia.
The Exception That Proves the Rule by Mathew Burrows  Time: 21m (6K words)  IssueWar Stories from the Future 
(Military SF) Fresh from school, Alastair joins a near-future British intelligence unit that's trying to identify people before they become terrorists.

Rating: Not Rated

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