Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

Uncanny Magazine Issue 29: July/August 2019

Rate this book
The July/August 2019 issue of Hugo Award-winning Uncanny Magazine.

Featuring new fiction by Sarah Pinsker, Greg van Eekhout, Rachel Swirsky and P. H. Lee, Marie Brennan, A.C. Wise, and Maurice Broaddus. Reprinted fiction by Tim Pratt, essays by Aidan Moher, Tansy Rayner Roberts, Karlyn Ruth Meyer, Marissa Lingen, and Elsa Sjunneson-Henry, poetry by D.A. Xiaolin Spires, Alexandra Seidel, Cynthia So, and Betsy Aoki, interviews with Greg Van Eekhout and Maurice Broaddus by Caroline M. Yoachim, a cover by Julie Dillon, and an editorial by Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas.

“The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye” by Sarah Pinsker
“Big Box” by Greg van Eekhout
“Compassionate Simulation” by Rachel Swirsky and P. H. Lee
“On the Impurity of Dragon-kind” by Marie Brennan
“How the Trick Is Done” by A.C. Wise
“The Migration Suite: A Study in C Sharp Minor” by Maurice Broaddus
“A Champion of Nigh-Space” by Tim Pratt
“Was Trials of Mana Worth Growing Up For?” by Aidan Moher
“The Gang’s All Here: Writing Lessons from The Good Place” by Tansy Rayner Roberts
“The Better Place” by Karlyn Ruth Meyer
“Beware the Lifeboat” by Marissa Lingen
“Sir Elsa of Tortall, Knight of the Realm” by Elsa Sjunneson-Henry
“capturing the mood” by D.A. Xiaolin Spires
“Sing” by Alexandra Seidel
“If Love Is Real, So Are Fairies” by Cynthia So
“Buruburu” by Betsy Aoki

168 pages, Kindle Edition

First published July 1, 2019

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Lynne M. Thomas

94 books204 followers
In my day job, I am the Head of the Rare Book & Manuscript Library and Juanita J. and Robert E. Simpson Rare Book and Manuscript Professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, one of the largest public university rare book collections in the country. I used to manage pop culture special collections that include the papers of over 70 SF/F authors at Northern Illinois University. I also teach a Special Collections course as an adjunct in the iSchool at Illinois, and used to do so at SJSU.

I'm an Nine-time Hugo Award winner, the Co-Editor-in-Chief and Publisher of Uncanny Magazine with my husband Michael Damian Thomas. The former Editor-in-Chief of Apex Magazine (2011-2013), I co-edited the Hugo Award-winning Chicks Dig Time Lords, Whedonistas, and Chicks Dig Comics. I moderated the Hugo-Award winning SF Squeecast and contribute to the Verity! Podcast. You can learn more about my shenanigans at lynnemthomas.com.

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
21 (12%)
4 stars
79 (48%)
3 stars
47 (28%)
2 stars
13 (7%)
1 star
3 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 60 reviews
Profile Image for Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽.
1,880 reviews22.8k followers
April 23, 2020
New review added for another award-nominated story. This issue includes two current Hugo and/or Nebula award nominees: "The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye" by Sara Pinsker and "How the Trick is Done" by A.C. Wise. free online at Uncanny Magazine (links in the titles below). Reviews first posted on Fantasy Literature:

3 stars for "The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye": A cheap, remote cabin with no amenities, but with lots of dead wasps and at least one dead mouse, seems like just the place for author Suzanna to hole up and write her next mystery novel. Zanna’s assistant Shar sweeps away the dead creatures, sets her up with groceries, and leaves for a nearby motel so Zanna can write without distractions. But the next morning Zanna blows the cabin’s fuses when she tries to use the coffeemaker and the microwave simultaneously, which makes her laptop with its worthless battery unusable for writing.

After some fruitless rummaging around in the cabin’s creepy crawlspace, Zanna decides to hike down to the cabin owner’s home to get help, and finds him dead, apparently from a fall. She calls 911 and her faithful assistant Shar for help. The police don’t blame Zanna; however, something about way the man appears to have died, along with some odd comments made by Shar, triggers Zanna’s sleuthing instincts. But does she really want to know the answer?

What starts out as a seemingly ordinary mystery takes a fantastical turn, although it makes a certain amount of sense based on a few clues we’ve been given in the story. Sarah Pinsker writes well, but the internal logic of “The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye” breaks down significantly: the explanation Zanna is given for why a certain strange and deeply serious problem has been allowed to continue doesn’t seem at all like a reasonable way to handle the problem, and Zanna’s is amusing but simply not believable.

4 stars for "How the Trick is Done": The basic plot of "How the Trick is Done" is straightforward, and disclosed in the first few paragraphs: a Vegas magician dies during his most famous trick, the "Bullet-Catch-Death-Cheat," in which a real gun is fired by an audience volunteer, the magician dies, and then magically reappears alive, somewhere else in the theater. What the audience doesn't know is that there is real magic involved in the trick. But it’s not the magician's own magic; it’s done by his girlfriend Angie, who is a Resurrectionist, able to cheat Death, over and over, bringing the dead magician back to life.

Even though we know the end from the beginning, there’s magic in the details of this Nebula-nominated short story, as we come to understand the characters of the magician and those who surround him. The magician is charismatic, with a thousand-watt smile, but utterly self-absorbed. He's a user and a taker, careless of the lives and feelings of those around him, including his stage manager Rory and his former assistant Meg, both of whom adore him, and Angie, who wasn’t in love with him, but was still pulled into his alluring orbit.
Looking at Meg, Angie sees herself in the mirror. The Magician pulled a trick on both of them, sleight of hand. They should have been looking one direction, but he’d convinced them to look elsewhere as he vanished their names like a card up his sleeve, tucked them into a cabinet painted with stars so they emerged transformed — a dove, a bouquet of flowers, a Resurrectionist, a ghost.
A.C. Wise has a deft way with words and an understanding of human nature and our weaknesses. I do question whether "How the Trick is Done" is a bittersweet, insightful tale.
Profile Image for Nataliya.
785 reviews12.5k followers
September 3, 2020
The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye by Sarah Pinsker — Hugo and Nebula nominee for best novelette:

Zanna chooses to start writing her next mystery book in a remote (and creepy) mountain cabin, far away from any distractions. Except that the next morning she comes across a dead body, which one can argue is the ultimate distraction. And something about that death seems odd to the seasoned mystery writer. Not to mention that something is off about a comment her assistant Shar makes about the whole situation.

This story then goes to really weird places. And things are weird and abrupt and I honestly thought that maybe I was wrong and there was a link to the second page where the story continues. But nope, that was it. Zanna just... well... calmly accepts what’s happening.

This would be a strange and creepy *first* part of the story. But it needs to be continued! I think I would have liked it a lot had it not ended in such an unsatisfying way that destroys any semblance of logic. Maybe this was a draft for the larger story, the first chapter of the novel - like the first chapter that Zanna managed to write?

Ultimately unsatisfying because of that ending. But the writing was good - at least it had that going for it.

3 stars.

Read it here: https://uncannymagazine.com/article/t...

How the Trick is Done by A.C. Wise — Nebula nominee for best short story:
“How many people can say they were there the night the trick went wrong and the Magician died on stage?“
Have you ever watched a magic trick onstage and wished that the answer to how the trick was done could be simply: real magic? I certainly have. It’s the case here. The Magician habitually dies on stage as a part of his Bullet-Catch-Death-Cheat trick. He is habitually brought back to life (behind the scenes, of course) by his Resurrectionist girlfriend Angie, the one who quietly does the real work.
“He never once allowed himself to think about the thousand huge and tiny things had to go right for the trick to work, or that only one had to go wrong. After all, the Resurrectionist pulled it off night after night—how hard could it be?”
But one day he dies for real. This is the opening scene, and the rest of the story is why and how we got there, while we already know the ending (or the beginning in this case).

The Magician is good at one thing - making others love him and then carelessly and casually moving on. But one day the charm just might not prove to be irresistible. One day the callous self-absorbed user’s gambit may backfire.
“The Magician had already moved on, his head too full of plans for his own death and return, overfull with confidence not in her abilities, but that he was too important to properly die.”
Comeuppance is usually nice, sure. But the punishment needs to fit the crime. To me it seems like quite a bit of an overkill, like a bunch of unlikeable resentful whiners taking revenge on an unlikeable callous asshole. Or they could have moved on, you know, instead of basically a homicide, and none of them can even take the responsibility of pulling the trigger, just casually making an unsuspecting innocent person a murderer. The fuck? The story obviously wants us to root for Angie, Meg and Rory, but being an asshole is not enough to justify a murder.

The happy ending is unearned. And because of that it left me cold and irritated.

I only felt bad for the rabbit. Rest In Peace, not-really-Gus. You will be missed. You get a star.

1.5 stars.

Read it here: https://uncannymagazine.com/article/h...


My Hugo and Nebula Awards Reading Project 2020: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...
Profile Image for Dennis.
658 reviews276 followers
May 31, 2020
***How the Trick Is Done by A.C. Wise***

A stage magician that is catching bullets, dies, reappears. How the trick is done? There’s real magic involved. This is a fantasy story. And a quite entertaining one. But the magician is an asshole. So you can probably guess how I wanted this story to end.

Actually, I’m not sure there are many good characters, as in good people, in this. But it doesn’t matter. It was still fun. And there are a few almost magical moments. Okay, that was probably the lamest pun ever. But it is true.

See for yourself here: https://uncannymagazine.com/article/h...

Nebula 2019 nominee for Best Short Story

2019 Nebula Award Finalists

Best Novel
Marque of Caine by Charles E. Gannon
The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow
A Memory Called Empire by Arkady Martine
Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir
A Song for a New Day by Sarah Pinsker

Best Novella
• Anxiety Is the Dizziness of Freedom by Ted Chiang ( Exhalation)
The Haunting of Tram Car 015 by P. Djèlí Clark
This Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar & Max Gladstone
Her Silhouette, Drawn in Water by Vylar Kaftan
The Deep by Rivers Solomon, with Daveed Diggs, William Hutson & Jonathan Snipes
Catfish Lullaby by A.C. Wise

Best Novelette
• A Strange Uncertain Light by G.V. Anderson ( The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August 2019)
For He Can Creep by Siobhan Carroll
His Footsteps, Through Darkness and Light by Mimi Mondal
• The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye by Sarah Pinsker ( Uncanny Magazine Issue 29: July/August 2019)
Carpe Glitter by Cat Rambo
• The Archronology of Love by Caroline M. Yoachim (Lightspeed Magazine, April 2019)

Best Short Story
Give the Family My Love by A.T. Greenblatt (Clarkesworld Magazine, Issue 149, February 2019)
• The Dead, In Their Uncontrollable Power by Karen Osborne (Uncanny Magazine Issue 27: March/April 2019)
• And Now His Lordship Is Laughing by Shiv Ramdas (Strange Horizons 9 September 2019)
• Ten Excerpts from an Annotated Bibliography on the Cannibal Women of Ratnabar Island by Nibedita Sen (Nightmare Magazine, Issue 80)
• A Catalog of Storms by Fran Wilde (Uncanny Magazine, Issue 26, January-February 2019)
• How the Trick Is Done by A.C. Wise (Uncanny Magazine Issue 29: July/August 2019)

Andre Norton Nebula Award for Middle Grade and Young Adult Fiction
Sal and Gabi Break the Universe by Carlos Hernandez
Catfishing on CatNet by Naomi Kritzer
Dragon Pearl by Yoon Ha Lee
Peasprout Chen: Battle of Champions by Henry Lien
Cog by Greg van Eekhout
Riverland by Fran Wilde
Profile Image for Nelson Zagalo.
Author 10 books334 followers
October 11, 2020
An excellent short sci-fi story, putting together family ties, regret and grief in possible future simulation systems.

You can read it in linear form, through the Uncanny Magazine, July 2019, n29: https://uncannymagazine.com/article/c...

Or in an interactive form, through Sub-Q , The interactive magazine for interactive fiction, August 2020: https://sub-q.com/play-compassionate-...

I've experienced the interactive form, adapted by Aster F., and must say it works very well, making you feel like you're really inside the simulation.

You can read more about the creation process at Swirsky blog: http://rachelswirsky.com/2019/11/thou...
Profile Image for Silvana.
1,169 reviews1,143 followers
April 29, 2020
Review and rating for two stories:

"The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye", by Sarah Pinsker
1.5 stars. I forgot that I actually have read this one (which makes it not memorable to me). And I did not enjoy it. There's something about Sarah Pinsker's works that do not sit well with me (although apparently the other award voter think otherwise), not sure what. I just found it gross at the end. I read many better novelettes that could have been better Hugo nominees. Still rooting for For He Can Creep!

“How the Trick is Done“, by A.C. Wise
3.5 stars. Very unlikable set of characters, good writing, but I am not satisfied with the ending.
Profile Image for Beth Cato.
Author 114 books563 followers
July 23, 2019
Another fantastic issue with a variety of stories and perspectives. Some of my favorites were Greg van Eekhout's "Big Box," Tim Pratt's "A Champion of Nigh-Space," and A.C. Wise's "How the Trick was Done." The nonfiction was especially relevant to me this time around with a fantastic piece of JRPG nostalgia with Aidan Moher's "Was Trails of Mana Worth Growing Up For?" and several essays about one of my favorite shows, The Good Place.
Profile Image for Kristīne Vītola.
627 reviews36 followers
March 24, 2023
"How the trick is done" by A.C. Wise, 1 star

The Magician not noticing other characters' romantic feelings is characterised as him "not seeing them". Their dissapointment, even anger directed at him for not noticing their crushes/answering them and the story implying that accordingly the Magician is at fault for Meg's suicide and Rory making a move on him i can not see as any way or form valid - no one should be responsible for other's romantic/sexual feelings towards them and what they do with those feelings. Meg at one point says that "her death looks like a diner at 1:47 a.m., right before your boss—the man you love—tells you you’re out of a job" - so he fired her, big deal ! In no way her taking the firing+her crush for him+him not noticing it as a reason to end her life is his fault. Because of him not feeling romantically about them other characters put in question any other feelings he could possibly have as a human (towards his pet rabbit, for example) and in general characterise him as being unfeeling, stupid and manipulative, t.i., dehumanize him. And thus they conspire to essentially kill him (blame, if not legally, then emotionally is put on an unrelated person's shoulders - good luck with them thinking of themselves as some kind of moral highground). This is one of the most (probably unintentionally, but still) arophobic/allonormative (sub-set of heteronormative) narratives i've read in a long time and as a aromantic person myself i was deeply disgusted of what this story implied about my worth and humanity.

"The blur in the corner of your eye" by Sarah Pinsker, 3 stars
Profile Image for Rachel (Kalanadi).
735 reviews1,434 followers
November 10, 2019
2.5 stars. Unfortunately almost all the stories in this didn't live up to their potential for me. Nothing was terrible, it was just very meh. The one exception was "A Champion of Nigh-Space" by Tim Pratt, quite fun and not too ambitious thematically. I enjoyed it from beginning to end. "A Blur in the Corner of Your Eye" by Sarah Pinsker would have been a favorite if the reveal had been something different. I loved the beginning...and just didn't think the actual explanation worked in any way. Ah well!
Profile Image for Heather.
52 reviews33 followers
December 23, 2019
My favourite fiction from this issue was:

On the Impurity of Dragon-kind by Marie Brennan - 4
How the Trick is Done by A.C. Wise - 4.5
A Champion of Nigh-Space by Tim Pratt - 4.5

And of the non-fiction:

Beware the Lifeboat by Marissa Lingen - 4.5
Sir Elsa of Tortall, Knight of the Realm by Elsa Sjunneson-Henry - 4.5
Profile Image for Ninja.
701 reviews6 followers
June 19, 2020
Very nicely written, though I think there just wasn't enough for the story of the magician and his cohorts.

Merged review:

The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye is a horror story about a writer trying to get away from it all with her assistant, but things take a turn for the worse as she's trying to work on her latest novel. I was suspecting different causes!
Profile Image for Ethan.
Author 3 books63 followers
July 5, 2020
A really well done horror story that makes for some interesting thoughts on the creative process.
Profile Image for Jess.
534 reviews80 followers
May 23, 2020
This one just didn’t work for me, sadly. I liked Pinsker’s writing and I was enjoying the story up until the reveal came, after which I felt like I was watching an episode of Poirot, or something, where I was having the entire point of the story explained to me because Pinsker hadn’t found a way to drop enough hints that I could figure it out for myself. I think I would have loved this if it had been longer.
Profile Image for Kerry.
1,517 reviews87 followers
June 10, 2020
One of the novelette nominees for the 2020 Hugo Awards.

This was a fine horror/fantasy story, but it didn't particularly resonate with me. I'm not sorry I read it, but it felt like it was much more about plot than theme . I also wasn't hugely impressed by the ending. This was my least favourite of the Hugo novelette nominees.
Profile Image for Hymerka.
609 reviews102 followers
May 31, 2020
“See if you can figure out how the trick is done, this time all on your own.”

Класне оповідання про магію вдавану і магію справжню. Для тих, хто любить вухами, як я, є й аудіоверсія. Кінцівка трохи нагадала епізод "Чорного дзеркала" USS Callister .
Profile Image for Beth Tabler.
Author 7 books173 followers
April 15, 2020
Reviewing "How the Trick Is Done" by A.C Wise

There is a secret trick in reading “How The Trick Is Done” by A C Wise. The trick is to see past The Magician as just a flat character. And understand the abuse and narcissism that a figure like the unnamed Magician represents.

The tragedy of this well-crafted story is not the death of The Magician. All creatures die, some deserve it, some don’t. But in the immortal words of The Dixie Chicks, “Earl had to die, goodbye Earl.” The real tragedy is the love that is abused and neglected by The Magician. First, in the form of Meg, the assistant who loved The Magician and was cruelly cast aside. Meg committed suicide by jumping off of The Hoover Dam in her grief. Secondly, the stage rabbit. The Magician could not bother to learn the real name of. Thirdly is the stagehand who is constantly overlooked. Not all love has to or can be reciprocated; however, there is a certain caustic cruelness to The Magician. He is a man who can only see as far as the light that personally shines off of him. And, in that, others will get hurt.

“It’s not the Magician’s infidelity. Like the Magician himself, she’s grown used to that. The Magician could kiss hundreds, flirt with thousands, fuck every person he meets, and Angie wouldn’t care. The kiss means nothing to the Magician, and to Rory it means the world. That, Angie, can’t abide.”

Enter the resurrectionist, Angie. While the stage magic of The Magician is a created thing, Angie is the real deal. She is magic and able to resurrect those that have died, although it hurts her. What can Angie do to right The Magician's wrongs?

“It’s getting harder to hold everything together, to want to hold it together—tell the bullet to stop, to cease to be once it’s inside the Magician’s skin, and tell the Magician’s blood to go. She sleeps eighteen hours a day, and it isn’t enough. Angie’s life has become an endless cycle—wake, eat, turn back death, applause that isn’t for her, sleep, repeat ad infinitum.”

"How The Trick Is Done" is a great story and worthy of its nomination.
356 reviews1 follower
June 23, 2020
Read for the 2020 Hugos
Story: The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye

This story pushed a bunch of my buttons. It's a weird, creepy mystery. I can't say much else without spoilers. Suffice it to say that I enjoyed it quite a bit. Good stuff.
Profile Image for Andy.
1,482 reviews57 followers
June 29, 2020
Another Hugo novelette nominee, I read 'A blur in the corner of your eye' by Sarah Pinsker and enjoyed it. It almost channeled Lee Child and Stephen King in the set up of a writer in a remote cabin in the woods who stumbles upon an unexpected situation.

And then it veers off into crazy town with an entertainingly ridiculous twist. I loved it though it felt far too swift and under-cooked. Still, a great concept and an enjoyable read.

It's also made me realise that I should be reading Uncanny Magazine as there's a lot of great writing going on here.
Profile Image for Flinx.
289 reviews4 followers
May 30, 2020
Funny thriller-ish detective story. Would have made more sense for me if the writer concentrated more on the mystery explanation than depicting kitchen appliances gone awry and walking down a mountain road.
Profile Image for Marco.
1,138 reviews49 followers
May 22, 2020
This review is for The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye by Sarah Pinsker.
Every year I read all the finalists of the most prestigious science fiction awards (at least in the English speaking world): the Hugo awards. This story is a finalist in the Novelette category.
The story follows Zanna, a famous mystery writer who is renting a remote cabin to work on her next mystery novel and her assistant Shar that is staying nearby. The next morning, the fuses blow and Zanna decides to go looking for the cabin owner to ask for repairs, and finds him dead. He has apparently fallen and hit his head on a rock. She calls 911 and Shar that quickly show up to see what's going on. While the police work, Zanna's mystery writer's brain goes over the clues and determines that something is off...
Sarah Pinsker is an excellent writer, and it is always a pleasure to read her work. This novelette is quite good, even if I confess the ending was not as satisfying as I would have liked.
Profile Image for Nicole.
1,111 reviews4 followers
June 28, 2020
EDIT: It appears another of Goodreads' work combinations has happened, so I need to specify that this review is for Sarah Pinsker's "The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye" only.

Amusing short story that has a sci-fi explanation (with a dose of thriller/horror) for binge writing sessions. I enjoyed the read, but think it could be even better if it was expanded to novella length.
Profile Image for Cristina.
612 reviews13 followers
June 16, 2020
“The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye” (2020), Nebula Award Nominee for Best Short Story - The twist was definitely unexpected (think Alien)
Profile Image for Lis Carey.
2,190 reviews101 followers
June 9, 2020
Zanna is a mystery writer who has had her assistant rent her a cabin with no near neighbors, no internet, not even a landline phone, so that she has no distractions while she works on her latest book. The assistant, Shar, will stay in a hotel in town, checking in on Zanna daily, but giving her time and space to write. The cabin proves to be a little more basic than Zanna anticipated, but it has a desk for her to work with, and a good view from the window near the desk, and that's all she needs.

The next morning, though, when a fuse blows and she has no microwave, no coffee, and in fact there's no power at all now, that's a little too basic. She has to go down the mountain, on foot, to find her landlord, since she isn't even getting one bar of signal on her cellphone.

When she gets there, she finds her landlord, dead. He seems to have fallen, and hit his head on a rock. He also looks, from his position and the look on his face, like he was running in fear from his own house.

Here, she has just enough signal to call 911, and then Shar.

She also has enough sense to stay out of the house despite the wide-open door. But when Shar and the police arrive, she does point out odd details she's noticed, and Shar seems unaccountably disturbed by this. Zanna shouldn't call any attention to herself at all!

Why? And why is Shar especially upset that she called attention to what appears to be the track of a lizard?

Is Shar hiding something? Does Shar have something to do with the death?

Is "the best assistant ever" someone very different from whom Zanna has always assumed her to be?

Intriguing and oddly fun, despite the death.

I received this story as part of the Hugo Voters packet,and am reviewing it voluntarily.
Profile Image for bee.
301 reviews16 followers
September 8, 2019
The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye by Sarah Pinsker: 3.75/5
Big Box by Greg van Eekhout: 4.5/5
Compassionate Simulation by Rachel Swirsky and P. H. Lee: 5/5
On the Impurity of Dragon-kind by Marie Brennan: 2/5 (I think this would be very confusing for you if you haven't read Brennan's The Memoirs of Lady Trent series)
How the Trick Is Done by A. C. Wise: 4.25/5
The Migration Suite: A Study in C Sharp Minor by Maurice Broaddus: 3/5
A Champion of Nigh-Space by Tim Pratt: 2/5

Was Trials of Mana Worth Growing Up For? by Aidan Moher: 4/5 (Wow, this was shockingly on par with my experience playing Mother 3 in 2010 after having grown up with EarthBound being my favourite childhood video game; also glad for some video game representation in the essays section because I feel like it's a medium often left out when talking about speculative fiction)
The Gang's All Here: Writing Lessons from The Good Place by Tansy Rayner Roberts: 3/5
The Better Place by Karlyn Ruther Meyer: 2/5
Beware the Lifeboat by Marissa Lingen: 4/5
Sir Elsa of Tortall, Knight of the Realm by Elsa Sjunneson-Henry: 5/5


Insert here my usual spiel about how I refuse to rate poetry, but WOW! I really loved If Love Is Real, So Are Fairies by Cynthia So. Even made me tear up a bit! To be honest, I'm glad I read this issue just for the experience of reading this piece alone.

Average rating: 3.5/5, rounding up to a 4 star rating simply for that poetry piece.
Profile Image for Paul.
1,253 reviews193 followers
November 10, 2019
Stories in this issue:
The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye by Sarah Pinsker
Big Box by Greg van Eekhout
Compassionate Simulation by Rach Swirsky and P.H. Lee
On the Impurity of Dragon-king by Marie Brennan
How the Trick is Done by A.C. Wise
The Migration Suite: A Study in C Sharp Minor by Maurice Broaddus
A Champion of Nigh-Space by Tim Pratt

So, a lot of these stories had interesting ideas but the execution just didn't work or it didn't deliver. My favorite story was A Champion of Nigh-Space by Tim Pratt. I was most disappointed in the Sarah Pinsker story because I was so involved in the story until the reveal and it just turned silly.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 60 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.