Saturday, December 5, 2009

Analog Science Fiction and Fact March 1978

Surprising issue. I wonder if this was a test of some sort? Two stories by first time authors, and one by someone who had published only one story earlier, and that in a minor market. And none of them never had any other stories in any of better magazines, and no more than one in any magazines. And all of them seem to be, well, lets say, slightly lower quality. Was Ben Bova bored, and picked a few stories out of the slush pile more or less in random?
Also, second part of a serial by Joan D. Vinge.

Moontrack • novelette by George W. Olney
Aliens have established a secret base on the moon. For some reason they destroy a Mars probe. Then they start to destroy orbital satellites. The first attack against the base used light infantry forces and was a disaster. The aliens happen to be extremely experienced in light infantry battle. So it is decided to use a mechanized infantry force against them. The aliens just don't happen to destroy the troop transports bringing in the forces to the moon, and they just happen to be totally unfamiliar with that sort of combat troops. The rest of the story feels like a war game campaign transcript told as a story, with practically no characterization at all. Very stupid, illogical, badly written, and boring story. *½

To Keep and Bear Arms • shortstory by Larry Matthews
This story is the reason I picked up this reason for reading. September issue had several letters from readers who were enraged by this. The story is a ironic story about guns, and what kind of consequences the freedom to bear arms might have if it is taken to ridiculous extent. Well, if it were my business, I would be for gun control. But this story is really, really bad and stupid, and badly written. So bad, that I find it surprising so many people were so offended by this. I think it is too bad as a story to be offended by. *
Too Much at Steak • shortstory by Gary D. Douglass
Wordplay about food. Mercifully short. No plot, no content, nothing interesting. *
The Broken Dome • novelette by Vonda N. McIntyre
I read the book version just less than a year ago and I liked it. However, not so much that I would reread it so soon.

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