Thursday, October 14, 2010

Analog Science Fiction and Fact March 2007

Fairly good issue, at least slightly above average.

Trucks • shortstory by Amy Bechtel
Mother is raising a “challenged” child who can't instantly calculate how many peas are dropped on the floor, and has strange trouble with calculus, even if he is already on second grade. On the other hand, he seems instinctively grasp facial expressions, something which is extremely hard and demands years and years learning them by heart. Very good “reversal” story. ****-
Misquoting the Moon • shortstory by David Bartell
A giant meteorite is about to hit earth. A few select humans will be able to emigrate to the moon. A man is hunting elephants (as there is no point in saving their lives as they are going to die out anyway). There is a fair amount of philosophical discussion. The writing is ok, but there are some bad anachronisms for a story which is supposed to be happening in mid to late 21st century. There are tube TVs, cars are using petrol and AIDS is certain death. Not to me to mention lax selection criteria for moon habitats and excruciatingly stupid behavior of the main character. **
Cool Neighbor • novelette by Jack McDevitt and Michael Shara
A gamma ray burst causes an emergency at a space station. One scientist who didn't survive was on track of major discovery and left some clues about it. A fairly good story, but bit disjointed, the beginning and end were somewhat separate, and probably was also a bit hurried. ***-
The Small Pond • novella by C. Sanford Lowe and G. David Nordley
Scenes from the life of a scientist and astronaut, who first finds an exoplanet and later emigrates to another solar system, has more than little trouble with authority figures (most of them more than deserving to have some trouble). The story consists of only loosely connected segments separated by several years, and didn't really form a cohesive entity. The writing was good, the characters were interesting, but somewhat less fragmentary storytelling style might have been nice. ***½

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