Sunday, December 3, 2017

The Greatest One-Star Restaurant in the Whole Quadrant, by Rachael K. Jones

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(SF Horror) A group of runaway cyborgs has to prepare meals for unknowing human ships or else blow their cover. But they’re short on one critical ingredient. (4,287 words; Time: 14m)

Rating: ★★★★★ Both Rare and Well-Done

"The Greatest One-Star Restaurant in the Whole Quadrant," by (edited by John Joseph Adams), appeared in issue 91, published on .

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

Pro: The plot chronicles Engineer’s descent into madness and how that ruined their escape plans and destroyed everyone except Friendly.

The author does a great job of making each of the cyborgs seem real and sympathetic, so we’re steadily more horrified as they succumb, one after another, to Engineer’s mad desire to get a five-star rating for food.

The point at the end when Friendly tells Engineer that it’s all over is extremely poignant, even though we’re relieved to see Engineer taken down. The marine’s casual explanation that it was a glitch in her wiring and that they were discontinuing those models both makes sense and horrifies us in a different way; we’ve come to see these cyborgs as people, not things.

The different ratings submitted by customers provide much needed comic relief.

Con: The more you think about it, the more it grosses you out.

Other Reviews: Search Web, Browse Review Sites (Issue 91)
Rachael K. Jones Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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