Review: Clarkesworld Magazine, Issue 143

Clarkesworld Magazine, Issue 143Clarkesworld Magazine, Issue 143 by Neil Clarke
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This issue’s stories didn’t really work as well for me as the last few issues have.

Thoughts per story:

The veilonaut’s dream: explorers at a spatial discontinuity explore it for money. Partially a tale of exploitative labor and partly a tale of the stages of grief.

The Anchorite Wakes: There are little hints here and there that something odd is going on. It is all revealed in the last few pages and it’s quite an incredible world hidden from us until that point. Very neat story and ending.

Kingfisher: A metaphor for being unable to let relationships go. It involved such strangeness that I often was left to discard various information about the world is the story because it often made no sense. But I think it worked alright as a metaphor.

The privilege of the happy ending: The author is literally in conversation with the reader in this extremely meta short story. It explores ideas of storytelling and, as per the title, happy endings. It’s quite well-written and reminds me of a fable, if fables got extremely meta.

The Loneliest Ward: a very short story about a nurse who works at a ward where people are becoming comatose in some kind of pandemic. The story is so short, it’s hard to talk about without spoiling anything. But the ending really re-enforces the point.

Yukui!: An interesting take on AI that perhaps takes the slave metaphor to a more subtle place than I’ve often seen in other stories.

Othermother (annex excerpt): an excerpt for a novel that was turned into a short story for publishing in Clarkesworld. I often say I went to see more of a world and now I can. Some kind of Alien invasion is capturing children and had used an evil psychological plan to do it. Quite horrific.

Mary and the monster: the life of Mary Godwin Shelley: a really neat insight into how Mary Shelley’s life provided the experience to write Frankenstein at such a young age.

Augmentations, assassins, and soundtracks: a conversation with Emily Davenport: Some discussions on generation ships as a genre and how to consider the technological advances in the future.

Another Word: Keeping Time: A philosophical discussion of time and how that can be used for story-telling purposes

Editor’s Desk: Oh, the Horror of it All!: Neil decides no more horror for Clarkesworld

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