Monday, January 17, 2011

Analog Science Fiction and Fact March 2011

A nice issue, clearly above average.

Rule Book • novelette by Paul Carlson
Very developed robots are becoming more common. They can take care of household chores, even be partly responsible for childcare. They are threatening to replace workers in industry, also. The story is somewhat disjointed covering Halloween trick-and-treating and ridiculing a clueless politician. Writing was nice, but it might have been split into two parts and expanded a bit. ***+
Falls the Firebrand • shortstory by Sarah Frost
Very clueless exploration team is studying a new planet where aliens help them out. Writing is very fine, but but... the rain is almost unfamiliar for planetary explorers? ***+
Hiding From Nobel • shortstory by Brad Aiken
A group of men who met on a summer camp a boys meet again. When they were young they had an adventure with unfortunate consequences. Or so they thought. Another story where writing is pretty, but the storyline isn't one of the most believable around. ***+
Julie is Three • shortstory by Craig DeLancey
A seven -year-old girl has survived a car accident which killed her parents. She is still in a hospital under observation, when a doctor starts to pay attention to her somewhat unusual behavior. The title is apparently a play on the famous story by Theodore Sturgeon (which I read just a short while ago). Another good story. The story could have been a bit longer. ***½
Astronomic Distance, Geologic Time • shortstory by Bud Sparhawk
Poetic and bittersweet story spanning geological times following one man and his decadents and a space probe launched by a faraway long dead civilization. Nicely written story going more for the mood than plot. ***½
Taboo • shortstory by Jerry Oltion
If you are practically immortal, haven't seen or been in any contact with your daughter for more than a century (and you can't even really remember anything detailed which has happened more than about fifty years ago), is the incest taboo still valid? Pretty good story.
Betty Knox and Dictionary Jones in the Mystery of the Missing Teenage Anachronisms • novelette by John G. Hemry
Two people from the future have transferred their consciousnesses to their young counterparts of themselves who are still in school. They are trying to stop epigenetic changes the widespread use of chemicals have caused in the future. A few other time-travelers have disappeared without any trace. Is there some force working against the plan? A very good and enjoyable story- ****-

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