Saturday, March 25, 2017

Ecdysis, by Julianna Baggott

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(Surreal) A.S. returns from life in a simulation to check on the sister and abusive father he left behind. (2,545 words; Time: 08m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

"," by (edited by Ann VanderMeer), published on by .

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

Pro: The "avatars" are symbols for the different ways people present themselves at different points in their lives. This dramatizes the transsexual experience of living in a body that's alien to you; in this story, everyone is in an alien body.

So the father, in his last days, regresses to being like a little child, and that's how A.S. sees him. Only when he dies, does he see the body as it is. And the two sisters literally become children again to show that they've recovered the comfortable familiarity they had as children.

Con: There's nothing speculative at the heart of the story. Instead, this is a fantastical element (the avatars) used to tell a mainstream story.

The scene at the hospital didn't seem to fit at all. It was implied that the narrator had enjoyed a simulation while his/her body was used to produce babies for some reason.

Other Reviews: Search Web, Browse Review Sites (Issue 03/22/17)
Julianna Baggott Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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