Showing posts with label Review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Review. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Penric's Fox, by Lois McMaster Bujold

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(High Fantasy; Five Gods) Penric helps investigate the murder of another sorcerer, whose demon must still be somewhere near the scene of the crime. (37,395 words; Time: 2h:04m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

This story absolutely requires the reader to have already read "Penric and the Shaman."

The Lamb Will Slaughter the Lion, by Margaret Killjoy

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(Near-Future Fantasy) In the dried-out ruins of an Iowa town, anarchists cope with a demon deer they summoned to protect themselves from “predators” but which seems to have its own definition of the word. (25,011 words; Time: 1h:23m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

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unfurl/ed, by Jes Rausch

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(SF) The Arnos power grid has a problem, but the entities that run the power satellite are having difficulties of their own—including not knowing how long ago this problem started. (2,442 words; Time: 08m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Uncanny Valley, by Greg Egan

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(Near-Future SF) Adam has 70% of the memories of the man who created him, but something vital is hiding in that missing 30%. (13,237 words; Time: 44m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

No Pearls as Blue as These, by Benjanun Sriduangkaew

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(High Fantasy) Tarangkaya made Bidaten into supersoldier from infancy, and she’s been content to serve them for years. Then her mistress takes a new bride who makes her think differently. (6,012 words; Time: 20m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

Red Bark and Ambergris, by Kate Marshall

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(High Fantasy) Sarai’s talent lies in scents, but she pursues poisons to get revenge on the queen who imprisoned her on this island. (6,988 words; Time: 23m)

Rating: ★★★★☆ Bittersweet and Powerful

These Constellations Will Be Yours , by Elaine Cuyegkeng

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(Space Opera) The empire “harvests” psionics and integrates them into their FTL starships. A starship content with her lot foresees a violent future when she recounts her story to a girl reluctant to be harvested. (4,961 words; Time: 16m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

The Martian in the Wood, by Stephen Baxter

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(SF Pastiche) When Zena’s brother disappears into a mysterious forest on her family property, she goes looking, and she finds that not all of the Martian invaders perished at the end of the War of the Worlds. (16,603 words; Time: 55m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

Readers need to at least know the plot of The War of the Worlds. Those who already read Mythago Wood will enjoy the many references to it, but it’s not essential. This story precedes the author’s book, The Massacre of Mankind.

Ink, by Bruce McAllister

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(Modern Fantasy) A young hemophiliac American boy in Italy visits a creepy old house to try to get old stamps for his collection. (4,259 words; Time: 14m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

The Shining Hills, by Susan Palwick

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(Urban Fantasy) Some nights shining lights appear atop hills in urban areas, and people who walk into them disappear—some say to fairyland. A cop who thinks otherwise tries to talk a young woman out of trying it. (3,848 words; Time: 12m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

An Inflexible Truth, by Christopher East

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(Climate SF) After his teammate disappears in the ruins of Las Vegas, a newsman goes to investigate—even though he has a desk job and has never been in the field before. (8,438 words; Time: 28m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

Tongue, by Ashok Banker

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(SF Horror) Married at age 10, she was determined to do anything to support her husband. No matter what. (2,580 words; Time: 08m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

Monday, August 7, 2017

A Man Out of Fashion, by Chen Qiufan

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(SF Hibernation) Du Ruofei sleeps until the future can heal his rare disorder. At first he really likes it, but the more he learns about 2322, the more uneasy he gets. (11,659 words; Time: 38m)

Rating: ★★☆☆☆ Not Recommended

In the Blind, by Sunny Moraine

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(SF) Two survivors on a space station try to figure out why Earth has stopped communicating. (5,409 words; Time: 18m)

Rating: ★★☆☆☆ Not Recommended

The Stone Weta, by Octavia Cade

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(Hard SF) An international conspiracy of scientists struggles to save climate data from governments trying to hide or falsify it. (4,358 words; Time: 14m)

Rating: ★★☆☆☆ Not Recommended

Reversion, by Nin Harris

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(SF) Expelled from Tortz and separated from her alien lover, Askriti has fled to her homeworld, where she has to submit to a ceremony before they’ll consider her human again. (6,678 words; Time: 22m)

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆ Needs Improvement

Twisted Knots, by D.A. Xiaolin Spires

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(SF) With her knowledge of topology, Lilian uses lasers to make vat-grown meat look real. Then one day her design is so intricate that it causes the meat to become sentient. (5,675 words; Time: 18m)

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆ Needs Improvement

The Trip, by Mari Kurisato

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(Colony Ship) A woman on a colony ship tries to save the life of her best friend. (5,268 words; Time: 17m)

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆ Needs Improvement

Skinny Charlie's Orbiting Teepee, by Pamela Rentz

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(SF) Charlie’s one of the original colonists on the Indian space colony, but he’s having trouble setting up a display of his old artifacts from Earth. (4,529 words; Time: 15m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

Welcome to Your Authentic Indian Experience, by Rebecca Roanhorse

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(Near-Future SF) Jesse uses virtual reality to give tourists a vision-quest experience. It’s demeaning, but it pays the bills. Then a tourist turns up who wants a really authentic experience. (5,815 words; Time: 19m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average