Sunday, January 20, 2019

Terminalia, by Sean McMullen

★★★☆☆ Average

(Steampunk Horror) At the turn of the 20th Century, an expert on death, dying, and resuscitation is forced to help a woman make a short visit to the land of the dead. (7,959 words; Time: 26m)

"Terminalia," by (edited by Andy Cox), appeared in issue 279, published on by .

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

Review: 2019.058 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: The natural order has been unbalanced by Duncan’s invention of metal bodies that can hold the souls of dead people. Lucielle’s visit to chat with Death restores the balance, at least in part. There's a a reasonable amount of tension when we wonder whether Lucille is dead or not.

Con: It’s all too easy. Jules resurrects Lucielle after just one trip to see Death, and that largely solves the problem. Duncan’s obsession over Valentina is anticlimactic. In both cases, Jules is a passive participant at most.

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2 comments (may contain spoilers):

  1. 4-stars from me. Yes - I really liked this one. I didn't see Jules as passive. He is smart, he figures it out and he is the one doing the saving. Ok - he is not leading the action but I don't have a problem with that.

    1. I guess I just want a bit more work out of protagonists. :-)