Sunday, August 5, 2018

Holdfast, by Alastair Reynolds

★★★★☆ Clever and Touching

(Military SF) Following a battle in an endless interstellar war, the sole survivors on each side face off deep in the atmosphere of a superjovian planet. (6,208 words; Time: 20m)

Recommended By: GDozois+1 NClarke+2

Although this was originally published in the UK in 2017, the first US Publication was in March 2018, so it should be eligible for the 2019 Hugo Awards at the 2019 WorldCon, to be held in Dublin.

"Holdfast," by (edited by Nick Gevers), appeared in (RSR review), published on by .

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

Pro: It’s fun watching them gradually win each other’s trust to the point where they make their final gesture to the future: whoever discovers them holding hands will at least wonder what transpired and maybe avoid making the same mistakes.

Con: Assuming holding hands means the same thing for aliens as it does for us.

It was hard to believe that the superjovian life forms could open their spacesuits without instantly killing them.

It was hard to believe that across centuries they had never had meaningful discussions, particularly when the “Maggots” knew the narrator’s language pretty well.

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Alastair Reynolds Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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