Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Sanctuary, by Allen M. Steele

★★★☆☆ Average

(Hard SF; Sanctuary) We read the log books that survive from two human colony ships which arrived at Tau Ceti e. We know things didn’t go well, but we don’t know why. (5,283 words; Time: 17m)

Recommended By: GDozois+1 JMcGregor+1

"," by (edited by Jonathan Strahan), published on by .

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

Pro: The account of how the crew tried to fight the progress of the Rot and eventually escaped to the surface with almost nothing to their names makes for an exciting story.

The idea of native life that consumes plastics is a cool one.

From the parenthetical comments at the start, we know that the meeting with the natives must have gone well.

Con: There’s almost no dialogue and no character development.

There’s a mention that this planet has “right-handed amino acids.” That means all of the local life would have been inedible, and so everyone would have starved—no matter how helpful the natives were.

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3 comments (may contain spoilers):

  1. Just to note--the "right-handed" comment was apparently an error, and the author actually apologized and corrected it after it was pointed out by a commenter.

  2. Spaceship wreck on a deserted island! I wondered if the Rot was something created to clean up the environment that got out of control.

    The author also said that there was a least another story coming and maybe a novel. Here's a link to the comment: