Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Analog Science Fiction and Fact April 2000

A clearly below average issue.

Obsidian Harvest • novella by Rick Cook and Ernest Hogan
The story happens in an alternative world where the Indian empires in central and southern America were never conquered. There are also giant lizards, some of them intelligent and there is religious reverence towards them. There is a kidnapping and a killing of one lizard and both cases are being investigated. Little back-story was given, and it was fairly hard to get into the story. Writing was pretty good, but it really felt like a part of series. Maybe the story would have worked better with out one difference from the ”real” world. ***-
The Comeback • shortstory by James Van Pelt
A baseball story. Extremely boring. The story is full of baseball trivia and depends on some details of the game. Couldn't care less. *½
Pilgrimage to Overworld • shortstory by Pete D. Manison
Some people have apparently retired to live beneath the earth surface, another group has moved to the starts. Both have changed during eons, and have been unknown to each other. By a change there is a meeting. By far too short a story to handle so large a concept. The story tries to be a melancholic tale, but doesn't really deliver. **
A Matter of Pride • shortstory by Ron Collins
A really good AI ( or a really well designed computer virus) teams with a computer programmer. A short fairly amusing story. Not great, somewhat too easy solution. ***+
Maiden Flight • novelette by Michael F. Flynn
A new space cadet takes part to her first space flight. Naturally there are complications during the flight, which are naturally solved by the new cadet. There was a far too detailed and boring description of pre-flight checks and other boring details. Many people have very strange chauvinistic attitudes (I had some trouble understanding the motivations of some some people in an earlier part of this series, now I didn't get some of the attitudes), writing was ok, but some tightening might have been good. ***
The Virtual Congressional Caucus • novelette by Shane Tourtellotte
A congressional representative who uses remote representation (and is not working in Washington) tries to fight against a proposition which would give people direct voting rights, without representatives. Pretty boring story with a lot of political scheming and wrangling of the constitutional details. ***-

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