Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Analog Science Fiction and Fact, November 2004

A pretty good issue with nice stories.

The Ghost Within • novelette by Rajnar Vajra
A private detective is hired to find out if “a ghost” in a virtual reality really is a ghost or some sort of computer glitch or something. That is found out by uploading to the computer. The strange thing turns out to be something…something potentially very dangerous. The “problem” solves itself far too easily, otherwise a pretty nice story. ***+
Gun Control • shortstory by Edward Muller
A junior diplomat has some problems with an intelligent gun and a proud tribe of aboriginal warriors. There is a lot of backstory which just implied and the story feels like it were a part of a series. It works fairly well, though. ***+
The Strange Redemption of Sister Mary Ann • shortstory by Mike Moscoe
A woman is dying from cancer in a nunnery. The souls of children she miscarried start to speak to her. The writing as such is pretty good (vastly, VASTLY better that those over-religious stories which were nominated for Hugo this year) but I don’t really accept the ideology presented in the story – as I don’t believe in souls, especially not in souls which inhabit embryos at conception. ***+
Extra Innings • shortstory by Robert Scherrer
A man and his friend play an extremely detailed baseball simulation game. It is very slow to play, and they don’t finish even one season as children. But life turns out to be very long and there are chances to return to game at some point during the next few billion years. A well written and nice story. ***+
Paparazzi of Dreams • novelette by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
A detective is working undercover. He is trying to find out if the dream recorders infringe copyrights. It is apparently possible to capture people’s dreams even from pretty far. Especially the celebrity dreams may be very valuable, but it is still in the grey zone actually owns the copyright to the dreams. The most famous male actor of (almost) all times seems to have a recurring dream of a murder. He used to live pretty crazy life as a young man. But did he commit a murder? Is it possibly to find out who was the girl in the dream? Should the dream even be used in such way? An excellent story in spite of some plausibility issue. ****

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