Friday, July 12, 2019

Wu Ding's Journey to the West, by Tang Fei


(Alternate History) In an alternate world where entropy flows backwards, a young man tries to build a railroad from Beijing to St. Petersburg. (9,032 words; Time: 30m)

"," by (translated by Andy Dudak, edited by Neil Clarke), appeared in issue 154, published on .

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

Review: 2019.396 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: Three generations of people work to complete this roadway, and this is the story of their efforts. As the story says, “Just because something is futile doesn’t mean it’s meaningless.”

Probably the best part of the story is the development of the relationship between Ding and Pete, two people who are so opposite, entropy runs different directions for them, and yet they’re devoted to each other.

Con: The reverse entropy gimmick isn’t used consistently. It only comes up where the plot needs it, and the rest of the time entropy works just like it does in our world. Spreading the story over three generations dilutes it considerably.

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