Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Benjamin 2073, by Rjurik Davidson


(Hard SF) Ellie wants to restore the extinct thylacine of Australasia, but her animals keep dying, and her funding it about to be cut. (6,112 words; Time: 20m)

"," by (edited by Ellen Datlow), published on by .

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

Review: 2020.296 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: It was quite nice to see a story set 50 years from now in which people are getting a handle on our environmental problems and things seem to be getting better.

Ellie is dying herself and she wants to leave something that will live after her, which makes this quest both noble and sad. The technical details look good, as far as they go, although it’s not clear what they’ve done to overcome the genetic bottleneck problem.

Con: The story is set in a 100% socialist future of exactly the type that failed so spectacularly during the Cold War. Nothing in the story makes that aspect at all believable.

Ellie’s efforts to create one animal seem misguided; by 2070 I would hope that we’d plan in terms of entire ecosystems and not introduce an animal just for nostalgia.

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