Thursday, May 3, 2018

Unstoppable, by Gardner Dozois

★★★★☆ A Solid Work, Hard to Put Down

(Epic Fantasy) Eight-year-old Kalgrin, fifth in line for the throne of Teranasia, kills his ten-year-old brother and decides he wants to be king. (5,713 words; Time: 19m)

"Unstoppable," by (edited by C.C. Finlay), appeared in issue 05-06|18, published on by .

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

Pro: Kalgrin ironically gets what he wanted. Everyone will talk about him for thousands of years, and his monument will endure.

The story does a nice job of delineating his gradual loss of humanity over time, starting when he murders his brother at age 8 and culminating with his transformation into a metallic thing.

The cleverness of his opponents keeps the story interesting all the way to the end, and the final outcome is very satisfying.

Con: The story is told almost entirely in narration; there’s little or no dialogue, and very little character development either.

Not really a negative point, but the final outcome is very similar to the conclusion of “Stoneskin,” by John Morressy (F&SF; June 1984).

Other Reviews: Search Web, Browse Review Sites (Issue 05-06|18)
Gardner Dozois Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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