Tuesday, January 9, 2018

A World to Die For, by Tobias S. Buckell

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(Multiverse) Chenra is a gunner for a Mad Max-like cluster of fighters in a world devastated by climate change. She’s surprised when strangers come looking for her. Strangers driving equipment that looks like it was made recently—not decades ago. (9,729 words; Time: 32m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Good Setup for a Longer Story

"," by (edited by Neil Clarke), appeared in issue 136, published on .

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

Pro: In terms of plot, in the simplest terms, Chenra is ready to move up, and she finds an opportunity that was literally beyond her wildest dreams: leading teams of people between parallel universes to help refugees on the one hand and fight invaders on the other.

The setting is the best part of this story. The contrast between the barely tolerable world #1 and the pleasant, normal world #2 was really powerful.

Con: It feels a lot like the setup for a much longer story. We’ve barely got the situation figured out when the story is over.

The actual worst-case scenario for burning all the fossil fuels is bad, but it isn’t as bad as the story makes it seem. The articles below analyze the worst case, and (baring some other catastrophe), Earth remains inhabitable; it would take a lot more than this to make the planet go “full Venus.”

What burning all remaining fossil fuels would do to the planet” (Harry Cockburn; Independent; May 25, 2016)

The climate response to five trillion tonnes of carbon” (Katarzyna B. Tokarska1 et al; Nature Climate Change; May 23, 2016).

Other Reviews: Search Web, Browse Review Sites (Issue 136)
Tobias S. Buckell Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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3 comments (may contain spoilers):

  1. I felt like it wrapped up with a satisfying ending. Not that I wouldn't read more if Buckell wanted to give it a go.

    1. It was definitely an interesting premise. We need a way to let people know when these things do get expanded into novels.

  2. 4-stars from me. This story read just fine as a stand-alone novelette for me, and it ended just fine as well. The setting and the premise is very good.

    I did find it a bit too easy that Miko and some of the Cheetah cluster managed to sneak aboard the truck without the very highly trained Shad troops noticing.