Wednesday, September 4, 2019

The Fires of Prometheus, by Allen M. Steele

★★★☆☆ Honorable Mention

(SF Thriller) A terminally-ill man sneaks out of his hospital on Callisto, steals a shuttle, and heads for Io. A rescue team goes after him, but should they really risk their lives for this? (7,439 words; Time: 24m)

"The Fires of Prometheus," by (edited by Jonathan Strahan), appeared in (RSR review), published on by .

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

Review: 2019.462 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: The story is very touching. We know Hal is going to die, but what he’s doing is pretty selfish, so it’s remarkable that the author manages to make it moving.

The author really did his homework on the scientific elements of the story. Almost everything I looked into checked out fine: masses, distances, trajectories, times. One nit: closest approach to Jupiter is periapsis or perijove, but not perigee.

Con: I found it hard to believe that after centuries of studies by unmanned probes no one had found the native life forms.

There’s no real tension in the story. Among other things, it’s first-person, so we know Roy survives.

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