Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Mountaineering, by Leah Bobet

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[Strange Horizons]
★★★★☆ A Chilling Testimony to Grief

(Allegory) Eli follows his dead brother up a mountain into the bitter cold. (2,484 words; Time: 08m)

"," by (edited by Jane Crowley and Kate Dollarhyde), appeared in issue 09/10/18, published on .

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

Review: 2018.525 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: Two years after his beloved brother’s death, Eli is still lost in grief. The mountain isn’t real, of course; that’s clear when Eli tells us he’s been climbing for “years.” He’s deeply depressed, following his brother’s ghost to his own death, and no adult has even noticed. “No one is coming,” as he says.

They keep circling around and around the peak (suicide), “almost there forever.” Eli doesn’t really want to die, and, for the first time, he sees that he isn’t going to. Even without help, he’s going to find his own way back. Not today, but soon. So the story ends on an up note of sorts.

Con: I’m not sure anyone who hasn’t experienced grief-induced suicidal depression will be able to relate to this story. Take that away, and it makes no sense that Eli keeps following Jamey when he knows he’s dead and that they're going in circles.

Other Reviews: Search Web, Browse Review Sites (Issue 09/10/18)
Leah Bobet Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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