Saturday, July 15, 2017

July 2017 Ratings

5 & 4 Stories: 11;  Estimated Time: 8h:36m (155K words)
Recommended By Stories: 23;  Estimated Time: 14h:47m (266K words)
Total Stories: 73;  Estimated Time: 33h:01m (594K words)
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Rating: 5 -> Hugo-worthy

An Evening with Severyn Grimes by Rich Larson  Time: 24m (ShortStory)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(SF Thriller) After terrorists spring her from cryo-prison, talented hacker Girasol goes into cyberspace to help them target the rich businessman who put her in prison in the first place.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR:5
(Alternate History Fantasy; Dominion of the Fallen) Two people from a secret, underwater House try to infiltrate a troublesome surface House that rules much of a Paris still recovering from long-ago magical wars.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR:5
How Sere Picked Up Her Laundry by Alexander Jablokov  Time: 1h:04m (Novella)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(SF Mystery) A struggling private investigator in a city full of alien refugees, Sere risks her life seeking connections between some mysterious aliens and an exterminator who blew himself up.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR:5 SFRevu:4
There Was a Crooked Man, He Flipped a Crooked House by David Erik Nelson  Time: 1h:18m (Novella)  IssueF&SF 07.08|17
(Horror) Glenn’s boss sends him to check out a new house he plans to flip, but just getting inside turns out to be harder than anyone could imagine—never mind getting back out.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR:5 SFRevu:4

Rating: 4 -> Recommended

An Unearned Death by Marissa Lingen  Time: 14m (ShortStory)  IssueF&SF 07.08|17
(High Fantasy) Osrith helps people near the end of life find a god who’ll take them, for in her world, no matter how old, worn, or broken you are, death must be earned.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR:4 SFRevu:4
For All Mankind by C. Stuart Hardwick  Time: 43m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Hard SF) A secret 1970 space mission sends a US and a Soviet woman on a one-way trip to deflect a killer asteroid.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR:4 SFRevu:4
Mapping the Interior by Stephen Graham Jones  Time: 1h:15m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 06/20/17
(Horror) At 12, Junior thinks his dead father has returned to protect his family. There’s a lot Junior doesn’t know about his father—living or dead.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR:4
Not Far Enough by Martin L. Shoemaker  Time: 1h:26m (Novella)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Hard SF; Captain Nick Aames) When an accident strikes, the Mars crew have to figure out how to salvage what they can and somehow survive until help can arrive.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR:4 SFRevu:4
The Bridgegroom by Bo Balder  Time: 30m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 130
(Post-Apocalypse) Alois wants to go back to the university—not spend the rest of his life guarding an old bridge. Even if it does talk to him about the world before the collapse.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR:4 SFRevu:4
The Masochist's Assistant by Auston Habershaw  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 07.08|17
(High Fantasy; Saga of the Redeemed) Georges has to help his master torture himself as part of his plan to make himself immune to almost all forms of death.
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(Historical Fantasy) A young apprentice at making magic gloves considers breaking the rules to make a special pair to control his sister’s epilepsy.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR:4

Rating: 3 -> Average

@lantis by Rudy Rucker and Marc Laidlaw  Time: 38m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(SF Surfer Humor; Delbert & Zep) A high-tech billionaire schemes to steal magic bubbles from Atlantis but surfers Del and Zep get in the way.
A Dog's Story by Gardner Dozois  Time: 04m (ShortStory)  IssueF&SF 07.08|17
(Animal Fantasy) Blackie’s getting old, but he still goes out to explore when the moon is full and he can talk to the other animals.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu:4
A Little Spooky Action by Howard V. Hendrix  Time: 03m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(SFF Humor) To celebrate the 100th anniversary of General Relativity, Madam Tasha Girl-Friday, Transgender Transgressor of the Boundaries of Space and Time, summons the ghost of Albert Einstein.
A Nest of Ghosts, a House of Birds by Kat Howard  Time: 15m (ShortStory)  IssueUncanny 17
(Modern Fantasy) Luna inherits her late grandmother’s house if she lives there for a year. She finds it full of birds that only she can see—and they’re trying to talk to her.
A Slumbering Storm by Rafaela Ferraz  Time: 18m (ShortStory)  IssueStrange Horizons 07/03/17
(Modern Fantasy) Eva goes to a mysterious hotel in an out-of-the-way town to try a sleep cure for her ennui.
A Touch of Heart by Alvaro Zinos-Amaro and Adam-Troy Castro  Time: 15m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 86
(Chinese Historical Fantasy) Dou hates his neighbor because Gan’s farm flourishes while his own languishes. Enough to seek out the Black Touch.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu:4 RHorton:5
Across the Steaming Sea by Rob Chilson  Time: 44m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(SF Adventure; Prime Mondeign) Unwanted third-son Luro leaps at the chance to join an expedition to find the lost technological treasures of the legendary Empyrean.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu:4 RHorton:4
Afiya's Song by Justin C. Key  Time: 46m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 07.08|17
(Alternate History Fantasy) There was magic in Afiya’s songs. Even after they cut out her tongue, she still managed to inspire the rebellion that ended slavery.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu:4
Alouette, Gentille Alouette by Andrew Barton  Time: 08m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Near-future SF) Véronique and Emily have to retrieve the Alouette 1 satellite for a museum, but there’s a problem getting it inside their ship.
Annabelle, Annie by Lisa Goldstein  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(Near-Future SF) Teen-age Annie has become an environmental fanatic, and she’s driving her parents crazy.
Belly Up by Maggie Clark  Time: 37m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Military SF) The courts removed Imbra’s ability to get angry or fight back, but he still wants to help his world fight off the invaders who’re threatening them.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton:5
Blinking Noon and Midnight by Tim McDaniel  Time: 06m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(SF Humor) Len’s fully automated house system has a “notorious” user interface, as he discovers when he tries to adjust the thermostat.
Darner by Jonathan Laidlow  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueStrange Horizons 06/19/17
(Horror) Temple’s new thesis supervisor takes her down town to show her the city in a way she’s never seen it before.
Fat Bubble by Tom Easton  Time: 06m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Near-Future SF) The narrator invests in a company making an experimental diet drug, but then his wife gets into their clinical trials and he learns something interesting.
Gale Strang by Michael Bishop  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(Modern Fantasy) An intelligent birdcage narrates the story of a young runaway, a lonely old lady, and a missing bird.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu:4
Galleon by Brian Trent  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Interstellar SF) Galleon runs trade routes between Sol and Ra. She’s very attached to her human captain, but he’s showing signs of settling down with a human woman.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu:4
(Legend) It all started with a shipment of pure-white angora cats on a boat that sank.
How to Find a Portal by Debbie Urbanski  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 86
(Portal Fantasy) Her parents warn her about the people in white vans who take little children to portal worlds, but the narrator really, really wants to go.
I Am Not I by G.V. Anderson2  Time: 33m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 07.08|17
(Dystopia) The narrator is a normal human in a world of hostile genetically modified people, and she’s desperate enough to do anything for money to replace the failing body modifications that let her “pass.”
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu:4
I Built This City For You by Cassandra Khaw  Time: 09m (ShortStory)  IssueUncanny 17
(Magical Realism) Anisa wants to win Sara back, so she turns herself into a city for her.
Integration by John Eckelkamp1  Time: 06m (ShortStory)  IssueCompellingSF 06.07|17
(AI SF) Zerith is a new AI, and he’s required to spend some time in a class of human students.
L'appel du vide by Rich Larson  Time: 16m (ShortStory)  IssueApex 98
(Near-Future SF) Pau is sure that his kidnappers want information about the secret project he’s working on, but why don’t they ever ask him any questions?
Last Chance by Nicole Kornher-Stace  Time: 38m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 130
(Post-Apocalypse) Even though she’s just a little girl, Aneko keeps looking for a way to escape the slavers who ambushed her mother’s coach and captured her.
Ora et Labora by Theodore McCombs1  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 229
(Post-Apocalypse) Obb is sure he’s not really “disordered,” but his family have sent him away to a monastery where the church forces people like him to learn math.
Other Worlds and this One by Cadwell Turnbull1  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(Time Travel) The narrator revisits the past hoping either to change it, understand it, or at least make peace with it.
(Modern Fantasy) Nina knows that owls appear to warn us of impending catastrophe, but what does it mean when one of them keeps harassing you?
Packing by T. Kingfisher  Time: 03m (ShortStory)  IssueUncanny 17
(Allegory) The narrator is packing to move before the season changes, and gives advice to his/her child, who is reluctant to go.
Perspective by Kyle Kirkland  Time: 20m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(SF) Seventy-five ago, Kimberly invented safe, practical brain stimulators. Now she’s called out of retirement to try to help a powerful politician who may have injured himself in his youth.
Rivers Run Free by Charles Payseur  Time: 16m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 230
(High Fantasy) Four river spirits flee across the desert to escape the people who dammed them and find their way to the sea.
Teamwork by Eve Warren1  Time: 05m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Mars Colony) The Earth-born commander of the Mars colony needs to find out how a young, Mars-born colonist got injured in some sort of recreational activity with her peers.
The Bride in Sea-Green Velvet by Robin Furth1  Time: 30m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 07.08|17
(Horror) Sir Henry prepares to resurrect a dead murderess as an offering to dark and hungry sea gods who expect something from him on his 49th birthday.
The Fool's Stone by Aubry Kae Andersen  Time: 23m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Historical Fantasy) The alchemist, Nadr Al-Ta’ir, has found the opposite of the Philosopher’s Stone; it seems to turn gold into lead.
The Ghost Line by Andrew Neil Gray and J.S. Herbison  Time: 1h:36m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 07/11/17
(SF Thriller) Saga and her husband help a client take over a mothballed luxury spaceship between Earth and Mars. There’s something the client isn’t telling them, though. Something deadly.
The Girl Who Stole Herself by R. Garcia y Robertson  Time: 1h:21m (Novella)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(SF Adventure Humor) In 3V, Amanda is a proud space princess, but in the real world she’s a 17-year-old high school dropout who lives with her mom. Slavers are after her, and some parts of the 3V world are more real than they ought to be.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu:4
The Patient Dragon by David Gerrold  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(SF Thriller) Injuries from an ambush force the narrator out of regular service and into mercenary work, but it bothers her that she doesn’t know why she was attacked in the first place.
(SF) In an age where death and dying are rare, the narrator’s mother decides she’s had enough of life.
The Significance of Significance by Robert Reed  Time: 17m (ShortStory)  IssueClarkesworld 130
(SF) A young woman reacts to the news that our universe is just a simulation by making wild choices that her family has to deal with.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu:4
The Turing Machines of Babel by Eric Schwitzgebel  Time: 24m (ShortStory)  IssueApex 98
(Magical Realism) Hamete lives in Borges’s “Library of Babel,” and his life changes forever when he follows a rabbit into the depths.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu:4
The White-Throated Transmigrant by E. Lily Yu  Time: 11m (ShortStory) 06/21/17
(Dark Fantasy) Hiding from her own problems, Winona volunteers at the local ornithological museum after she hits a bird with her car.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton:5
Travelers by Rich Larson  Time: 10m (ShortStory)  IssueClarkesworld 130
(SF) The starship wakes her up 32 years too soon, and the only other person awake is a really strange guy.
Weighty Matters: Tordor's Story by James Gunn  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(Military SF; Transcendental) Tordor’s species produces warriors by brutal training starting from a young age. He’s very successful, but he dreams of changing the system.
(Near-Future SF) A young body builder gets an offer from a rich old man to swap bodies.

Rating: 2 -> Not Recommended

(High Fantasy; Birdverse) The Old Royal has ruled the desert for millennia from her palace where a star once fell, but the arrival of a young stranger brings chaos.
An Obstruction to Delivery by Sean Adams1  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 07.08|17
(Slipstream Horror) For political reasons, postal workers are required to use the mysterious tunnels underneath the town to deliver mail. Unfortunately, something has started eating them.
Clarity of Signal by Holly Schofield  Time: 16m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Far-future SF) Marin is sure the stigs are intelligent and maybe even have telepathy, and she’s determined to make the most of her one chance to study them—even if it costs her her relationship with Landon.
In a Wide Sky, Hidden by William Ledbetter  Time: 15m (ShortStory)  IssueF&SF 07.08|17
(Exploration SF) In an age that has lost interest in exploration, the narrator seeks his lost sister, on an empty, unexplored world.
Often and Silently We Come by Ron Collins  Time: 13m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Non-human SF) X-jin captures aliens to dissect and for his students to study. He has secret suspicions about the value and morality of this work, though.
The Ache of Home by Maurice Broaddus  Time: 15m (ShortStory)  IssueUncanny 17
(Slipstream) Celeste endures the life of a poor black woman in Indianapolis, but she has a little bit of magic, and she means to stand up to the people trying to destroy her neighborhood.
The First Rule Is, You Don't Eat Your Friends by Robert R. Chase  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Near-Future SF) Brother Lawrence and his pig are taking a walk outside the monastery when he finds an injured scientist seeking protection.
The Law of Conservation of Data by John Grant  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueLightspeed 86
(Far-Future SF) Five sex partners decide to explore the remains of a casino that was pushed into a black hole an eon ago.
(SF) A Loonguni travelling box can safely carry thousands of passengers, but the ever-changing architecture makes it uncomfortable for the first human passengers.

Rating: 1 -> Needs Improvement

A Mortal Legend by Marcelo Cohen  Time: 05m (ShortStory)  IssueStrange Horizons 06/26/17
(Magical Realism) A girl who sells ice cream at the airport copes with body parts appearing in the ice cream vats.
An Age of Ice by Zhang Ran  Time: 08m (ShortStory)  IssueClarkesworld 130
(SF) Feng Su wakes up after 40 years of hibernation, but things aren’t exactly what she expected.
Cogito Ergo Sum by Mike Adamson  Time: 23m (ShortStory)  IssueCompellingSF 06.07|17
(SF) A wealthy man leaves everything to his android companion, and she has to defend her claim to be human.
(Fantasy Science) Carlos is second-in-Command of a submersible city, and he has to cope with a sequence of failures that threatens to destroy them.
Mix Tapes From Dead Boys by E. Catherine Tobler  Time: 16m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 86
(Surreal SF) Hadly explores an old derelict spaceship that orbits Neptune. It ought to be inert, but somehow something still functions.
Phuquiang: A History by Uncle River  Time: 10m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(Far-future SF) In which we learn the history of Fire Mountain Lake and Phuquiang.
Pitch by Bruce McAllister and Patrick Smith  Time: 03m (ShortStory)  IssueAnalog 07.08|17
(SF) A 22nd-Century playwright proposes a screenplay for a thriller.
Transcendental Mission: Riley's Story by James Gunn  Time: 16m (ShortStory)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(SF; Transcendental) Riley finds himself in a place with no light and no sound, and he can’t even feel his body. He tries to remember how he got there.
Waiting on a Bright Moon by JY Yang  Time: 33m (Novelette) 07/12/17
(Space Opera) Xin’s orderly life on Eighth Colony changes forever when she ushers a mutilated body through the portal.
When the Devil Drives by Melinda Snodgrass  Time: 43m (Novelette) 07/05/17
(Superhero; Wild Cards) The wildcard virus turned Noel into a shapeshifting, teleporting hermaphrodite. Although retired from the spy business, he reverts to old habits when someone tries to frame him for murder.

Rating: Not Rated

Field Studies by Sheila Finch  Time: 11m (ShortStory)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(Mainstream) A homeless woman fends off unwelcome help from a stranger, even though she seems to be deathly ill.

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