Monday, March 28, 2016

Motherboard (A Tale from Somewhere), by Jeffrey Thomas

(Magical Realism) Teenage Leep works making circuit boards somewhere in the third world. He's so awkward and quiet that people think he's crazy, but he sees a very different world.  (~7,744 words)

Rating: 4, Award-Worthy

"Motherboard (A Tale from Somewhere)," by appeared in the March-April 2016 issue of Interzone Magazine (Issue 263), published by .

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

Pro: The story shows us that Leep is a good person, worthy of love, even though he's very strange. We feel his pain and we understand the fleeting pleasure he gets from being somewhere besides this world. We feel happy for him when he finds a place where he belongs--together with people who love him.

Most of us have probably looked at PCB's and thought how much they looked like complex alien cities. Up to the point where Lhut sees him materialize, we can still believe that everything is in Leep's imagination, but from that point, we easily accept the idea that Leep really is an emissary from aliens. It's particularly delightful when we realize the orange dot was really Fhu Fhu.

Con: The mother and the stepfather abruptly drop out of the story, leaving their part of the story unresolved.

Minor issue: If Leep is invisible when he's on Motherboard, why does he see his own face in the sky?

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