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The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, May/June 2013 (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, #707)

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Contents: NOVELLAS "Wormwood is Also a Star" by Andy Stewart NOVELETS "Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much" by Robert Reed "Changes" by Rand B. Lee "The Woman in the Moon" by Albert E. Cowdrey "The Bluehole" by Dale Bailey "Canticle of the Beasts" by Bruce McAllister SHORT STORIES "By the Light of the Electronic Moon" by Angelica Godorischer "Directions for Crossing Troll Bridge" by A Contents: NOVELLAS "Wormwood is Also a Star" by Andy Stewart NOVELETS "Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much" by Robert Reed "Changes" by Rand B. Lee "The Woman in the Moon" by Albert E. Cowdrey "The Bluehole" by Dale Bailey "Canticle of the Beasts" by Bruce McAllister SHORT STORIES "By the Light of the Electronic Moon" by Angelica Godorischer "Directions for Crossing Troll Bridge" by Alexandra Duncan "The Mood Room" by Paul Di Filippo "Doing Emily" by Joe Haldeman "Systems of Romance" by Ted White DEPARTMENTS Editorial by Gordon Van Gelder "Books to Look For" by Charles deLint "Books" by Elizabeth Hand "Films: A Funny Thing Happened on My Way to Mirkwood..." by Lucius Shepard May/June 2013, Volume 124, No. 5&6, #707 Edited by Gordon Van Gelder Cover art by Kristen Kest


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Contents: NOVELLAS "Wormwood is Also a Star" by Andy Stewart NOVELETS "Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much" by Robert Reed "Changes" by Rand B. Lee "The Woman in the Moon" by Albert E. Cowdrey "The Bluehole" by Dale Bailey "Canticle of the Beasts" by Bruce McAllister SHORT STORIES "By the Light of the Electronic Moon" by Angelica Godorischer "Directions for Crossing Troll Bridge" by A Contents: NOVELLAS "Wormwood is Also a Star" by Andy Stewart NOVELETS "Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much" by Robert Reed "Changes" by Rand B. Lee "The Woman in the Moon" by Albert E. Cowdrey "The Bluehole" by Dale Bailey "Canticle of the Beasts" by Bruce McAllister SHORT STORIES "By the Light of the Electronic Moon" by Angelica Godorischer "Directions for Crossing Troll Bridge" by Alexandra Duncan "The Mood Room" by Paul Di Filippo "Doing Emily" by Joe Haldeman "Systems of Romance" by Ted White DEPARTMENTS Editorial by Gordon Van Gelder "Books to Look For" by Charles deLint "Books" by Elizabeth Hand "Films: A Funny Thing Happened on My Way to Mirkwood..." by Lucius Shepard May/June 2013, Volume 124, No. 5&6, #707 Edited by Gordon Van Gelder Cover art by Kristen Kest

30 review for The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, May/June 2013 (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, #707)

  1. 5 out of 5

    Daniel

    - "Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much", by Robert Reed - One of two stories in this issue dealing with the theme of living beyond current human life spans. In this case the method appears more novel to my reading experience, and I also found the writing here to be more touching. Usually a good Reed story entertains with not much more for me, but this stood out with elements that went deeper, such as the sense of living in a changed world of new technologies that one isn't eager to embrace for on - "Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much", by Robert Reed - One of two stories in this issue dealing with the theme of living beyond current human life spans. In this case the method appears more novel to my reading experience, and I also found the writing here to be more touching. Usually a good Reed story entertains with not much more for me, but this stood out with elements that went deeper, such as the sense of living in a changed world of new technologies that one isn't eager to embrace for oneself, and dealing with all others that adapt. - "By the Light of the Electronic Moon", by Angelica Gorodischer (translated by Amalia Gladhart) - A science fiction yarn relating the uncertainties of an amorous alien encounter. Seeing how the yarn develops keeps you turning the pages, but the details and voice of the storyteller make you cherish each one you before you turn. - "Changes", by Rand B. Lee - I adore posta-pocalyptic tales, and this was no exception. Largely a fantasy although the apocalypse origin is scifi, a "storm" that springs in isolated points of space time on Earth changing dimensional 'probabilities" for all except a unique few that have some measure of control over the Changes. The inclusion of telepathic dogs speaking in archaic English threw me off as silly at first, but quickly I grew into acceptance and enjoyment. The 'ending' simply implies continuing stories in this universe. - "The Woman in the Moon", by Albert E. Cowdrey - Another futuristic yarn about the moon, this time largely a tongue-in-cheek poke at academia, research credit, and legacy. Critique in it was valid to a point, but taken to extremes here as an elderly man recounts to his young academician son-in-law to be how he wrote his famous research work on an ancient lunar civilization. I found the humor rather stale, but appreciated the overall parody. - "Wormwood is Also a Star", by Andy Stewart - A family of radiation-resistant, psychic children who survived the Chernobyl meltdown have started killing themselves one by one. A journalist who has a personal relationship with the eldest boy struggles with the conflicts between her professional role, her private romance, her marriage, and her politically powerful father. The story begins excellently with sharp writing, but begins to plod in plot towards the conclusion. Those moments with character and emotion at the forefront were beautiful though. - "The Bluehole", by Dale Bailey - Three thoughts about this as I read: 1) This seems like something Stephen King would write, 2) When are we going to get to the fantastic and the action, and 3) I love the nostalgia of the voice and the description of this friendship between two boys. The fantastic and horror finally does come at the end as the boys go for a swim in a lake wrapped in urban legend. I didn't mind having to wait given how strong the characterization and descriptions were to set the mood leading up. That said, some of the details to place the reader firmly in the setting and themes seemed overdone, reaffirming moods or ideas already clearly established. - "The Mood Room", by Paul Di Filippo - Written much like a story in his Plumage from Pegasus column, this first-person story explains the history of the development of a "Mood Room", a room that tailors itself to occupants in many ways. Like those of his column this story is 'cutesy' but not much meat to it. - "Doing Emily", by Joe Haldeman - Academics put on historical (in this case literary) personas for a period to experience life in their skin. This might give one an experience more horrific than they had in mind. Good short story with a creepy close. - "Systems of Romance", by Ted White - The second living-beyond-one's-years tale, this time a select few get the opportunity for medical treatments that extend their physical existence for multiple real-time lives. But what happens when this is only offered to a select few. How might other people respond or do? The story and its theme is kept within the confines of a romance, but I feel the themes would be better addressed in a longer work, making this a good 'episode' in something that could be explored more. - "Canticle of the Beasts", by Bruce McAllister - McAllister can write very well, but the story here (related to a previous story he wrote) didn't work plot-wise for me on its own, it simply seemed like the grand story overall is lost in this small episode. A mixture of Catholic and pagan symbolism and fantastic elements felt odd and clashing.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Samuel Lubell

    This is a solid issue with no real duds. "Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much" is an interesting take on transcendence in that having your brain hooked up to a computer cooks the brain in a matter of days but subjectively, it seems like decades. I liked it up to the ending which I thought made no sense as the main character sets up a simulation of his family and then goes and kills himself to keep it running even though no one real observes it. By the Light of the Electronic Moon is translated from This is a solid issue with no real duds. "Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much" is an interesting take on transcendence in that having your brain hooked up to a computer cooks the brain in a matter of days but subjectively, it seems like decades. I liked it up to the ending which I thought made no sense as the main character sets up a simulation of his family and then goes and kills himself to keep it running even though no one real observes it. By the Light of the Electronic Moon is translated from Spanish and has a somewhat odd feel to it. Essentially, it is a tale tale of a space trader who has a romantic encounter with a woman who thinks she is interacting with an virtual reality simulation of a comic book character. Changes is about a journey through a future America where probability squalls bring in patches from alternate Earths. It reads like the opening of a novel. The Women in the Moon is an amusing tale of academic dishonesty by a famous professor talking to his future son-in-law about his own career. Wormwood is also a Star is my favorite story in the issue. Yes, the science is suspect but the idea of witch-children holding off the radiation from Chernobyl is interesting, although the mystery at the end seems a bit stuck on. The Bluehold is a simple horror story about a monster in a swimming lake, although it has an interesting explanation as to how something that size could survive when there aren't stupid swimmers to eat. The Mood Room predicts what a Star Trek-like holosuite would really be used for. Doing Emily by Joe Haldeman takes the idea that literature professors of the future would use VR technology to simulate great writers of the past, only to learn some authors once they get inside your head won't let you go. Systems of Romance by Ted White has some interesting ideas about artists and immortality, but takes the easy way out by having Cecilia die in an accident. Canticle of the Beast seems like an excerpt from a novel that goes overboard on symbolism.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Meran

    As per usual, my favorite magazine comes through with interesting and fun new stories for the issue. Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much by Robert Reed- I think Reed may be my favorite short fiction writer. This story is about a direction the human race goes, with technology, resulting in an apocalypse of a kind. The narrator provides the solution. - 5 stars By the Light of the Electronic Moon by Angelica Gorodischer- Very entertaining story of a sexual misadventure. - 5 stars Changes by Rand B. Lee As per usual, my favorite magazine comes through with interesting and fun new stories for the issue. Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much by Robert Reed- I think Reed may be my favorite short fiction writer. This story is about a direction the human race goes, with technology, resulting in an apocalypse of a kind. The narrator provides the solution. - 5 stars By the Light of the Electronic Moon by Angelica Gorodischer- Very entertaining story of a sexual misadventure. - 5 stars Changes by Rand B. Lee- A story of a small sect of humans saving the World after a great calamity, probably caused by humans, through sacrifice of their own blood. - 5 stars The Woman in the Moon by Albert E. Cowdrey- Entertaining tale of natural life on our moon and academe. - 4 stars Wormwood is Also a Star by Andy Stewart- A story of the Ukraine, Old Russia, Chernobyl, and love - 4 stars Directions for Crossing Troll Bridge by Alexandra Duncan- 3 stars The Bluehole by Dale Bailey- A memory recalls the events of a life changing summer for a 13 yr old. Sad. - 4 stars Doing Emily by Joe Haldeman- VR learning experience, as Emily Dickenson doesn't go quite as planned. - 4 stars Systems of Romance by Ted White- An interesting tale of longevity, music, and inner blindness. - 4 stars Canticle of the Beasts by Bruce McAllister- 3 religious travellers encounter special beasts in a special forest during a time of need. - 4 stars

  4. 4 out of 5

    Max

    An interesting mix of stories this time around. Changes alone is enough to make this an excellent issue, and I hope there will be something continuing the storyline in a future issue. The setting of an Earth wracked by reality-altering storms was interesting, and the dog characters were quite well written. Wormwood was okay. I felt like the SF aspects weren't explored quite enough. Grizzled Veterans wasn't great and Woman in the Moon was a total waste of space. The Bluehole was fairly good, thou An interesting mix of stories this time around. Changes alone is enough to make this an excellent issue, and I hope there will be something continuing the storyline in a future issue. The setting of an Earth wracked by reality-altering storms was interesting, and the dog characters were quite well written. Wormwood was okay. I felt like the SF aspects weren't explored quite enough. Grizzled Veterans wasn't great and Woman in the Moon was a total waste of space. The Bluehole was fairly good, though as with Wormwood, I felt like the SF angle to it wasn't as prominent as I like. Canticle of Beasts was okay, but it felt like a chapter out of a book rather than a standalone story. I might well like the book, but I wasn't a big fan of the story on its own. Electronic Moon, on the other hand, was fun and I definitely plan to check out the novel it's from. Directions for Crossing Troll Bridge and Doing Emily were both good and unsettling stories. The Mood Room was okay, but didn't leave much of an impression on me. I definitely liked Systems of Romance, as it reminded me of an anthology of fantasy and science fiction rock and roll stories I read recently. Over all, this was a fairly good issue, and the few stories I didn't like weren't enough to negate the really strong ones.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    I tried this on a 30 day free subscription trial of this magazine and I wasn't disappointed. It contains quite a few short stories. Some of them were really good. If you are a fan of science fiction and fantasy genre's and like reading norvellas and short stories then this is the magazine for you. I tried this on a 30 day free subscription trial of this magazine and I wasn't disappointed. It contains quite a few short stories. Some of them were really good. If you are a fan of science fiction and fantasy genre's and like reading norvellas and short stories then this is the magazine for you.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Shawn

    If it wasnt for a couple of weak stories this would be a strong issue, but it has some stellar stories such as Wormwood, Mood Room, Bluehole, and Systems of Romance. But they werent enough to convince me to give up the fourth star this time out.

  7. 4 out of 5

    David Lancaster

    For me, this was a very 'dark' issue. From the cover, to a couple of the stories inside, I just couldn't get into it. I hope the next issue proves much better. For me, this was a very 'dark' issue. From the cover, to a couple of the stories inside, I just couldn't get into it. I hope the next issue proves much better.

  8. 5 out of 5

    George Heintzelman

    Sad to say, I didn't really enjoy any of the stories this issue. A couple were okay, best among them probably Reed's "Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much", but it was a really forgettable issue. Sad to say, I didn't really enjoy any of the stories this issue. A couple were okay, best among them probably Reed's "Grizzled Veterans of Many and Much", but it was a really forgettable issue.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Elihu

  10. 4 out of 5

    Rand Lee

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ariel Hudnall

  12. 4 out of 5

    Paul Roberts

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kirsty

    I really enjoyed this issue, it had me eagerly turning the pages. A really good strong issue.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Rex Hughes

  15. 5 out of 5

    Nikki

  16. 4 out of 5

    Frankie

  17. 4 out of 5

    Shamus Mcgillicuddy

  18. 4 out of 5

    Keith

  19. 5 out of 5

    Linda

  20. 5 out of 5

    Deborah Replogle

  21. 4 out of 5

    Shawn

  22. 4 out of 5

    OTIS

  23. 5 out of 5

    Ryan Campbell

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jeffrey Milloy

  25. 4 out of 5

    Tad Kilgore

  26. 4 out of 5

    G33z3r

  27. 4 out of 5

    Nathan Hall

  28. 5 out of 5

    Trish Thompson

  29. 4 out of 5

    Robert Arl

  30. 5 out of 5

    Brandon Hawkins

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