Monday, August 7, 2017

The Trip, by Mari Kurisato

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(Colony Ship) A woman on a colony ship tries to save the life of her best friend. (5,268 words; Time: 17m)

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆ Needs Improvement
Recommended By: SFRevu:4

"," by (edited by Amy H. Sturgis), appeared in issue 99, published on .

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

Pro: The story has a coherent plot. The unrequited lesbian relationship gives it a bittersweet tone, and her sacrifice of her body at the end is the only way the two of them will ever be together.

Con: There are way too many infodumps. Little dialogue, but much of it is as-you-know-Bob. Key plot elements are sprung on us. E.g. all the issues the Ship Mind brings up to stop Corie.

The crying AI falls flat, and the conclusion—that Corie swaps bodies with Amy—is impossible to believe.

The science and technology are mostly nonsense. For example, genetic diversity could be established with frozen embryos or even frozen sperm. It’s impossible to believe that a seed ship would allow a cancer patient onboard. Why would people in suspended animation need virtual reality? With everyone in hibernation, what’s the point of a wheat field on the ship? Why use magnetic shoes if the ship is rotating to generate artificial gravity. Etc.

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3 comments (may contain spoilers):

  1. I thought it was a touching and surprising story of sacrifice for a loved one. I wouldn't call the relationship exactly unrequited. Amy loves Corie, but is asexual.

    I took the ship AI crying as feeling Corie's emotions in her Doppelgรคnger as she was mourning the loss of any physical body just before she left it. That's what distracts it from realizing Corie's true plan.

    Yes, the science is magical at best when it isn't just plain sketchy.

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    Replies
    1. I think the most painful unrequited love affairs are when there's love in both directions. "I do love you, but not that way."

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    2. That's certainly true if someone will have that type of a relationship with someone else. But Amy refers to Corie as her partner. She's presumably left all other friends and family behind to follow Corie into space. Not that it would be easy, but Corie is still the most significant person in Amy's life.

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