Short Story Club: “Unrest”

Little beyond basic reactions for this week’s story; Rich Horton thought it “an excellent dark tale of the ravages of war, told effectively from sequential points of view of the participants/victims”; Lois Tilton says it is “An intriguing series of glimpses into a world we can not see quite clearly enough to fully understand”; James wasn’t convinced:

Each story is bleak and grim, and the overall tone is depressing. Presumably that’s intentional to show the horrors of war, but the result is a rather dark read which I didn’t really enjoy. The fragment of hope thrown out to the reader at the end of the story wasn’t enough for me. I wanted more hope; from somewhere.

And Paul Jenkins, reviewing the audio version for The Fix, said:

… a curious folk tale with serial narrators, each telling of the demise of the one before—or that’s how the plot seemed to progress. But with any fantasy setting the author needs to establish the world of the story in a transparent and subtle manner, to avoid resorting to the dreaded infodump. If in addition there are multiple characters who are dispatched in turn, the reader/listener is likely to have trouble identifying with them before they’re no longer around, while at the same time trying to make sense of the setting with its magic, trolls and spirits. For those familiar with the conventions of the genre, or better still with that particular world of this particular author, it isn’t likely to be a problem. For others, it can be a bit hard-going. Nevertheless the story is well-produced and would probably reward repeated listening.

Your thoughts?

War in SF

Even all the snow ever can’t stop the new Vector getting through, it seems:

Torque Control — editorial
Letters — from Anna Feruglio Dal Dan and Martin Lewis
HG Wells’ The War of the Worlds as a controlling metaphor for the twentieth century — Stephen Baxter
The Menace of War: Einstein, Freud and SF by James Holden
After Heinlein: Politics in Scalzi’s Green Soldier Universe by Martin McGrath
The Flowers of War — Nick Hubble considers The Carhullan Army
First Impressions — book reviews edited by Kari Sperring
Transmission, Interrupted — a TV column by Saxon Bullock
Foundation Favourites: Memoirs of a Spacewoman — Andy Sawyer
Resonances: Hitler Wins — Stephen Baxter
The New X: Wings of Song — Graham Sleight

It’s a big issue — twelve pages more than usual! — but as noted in the editorial, I also recommend the following supplementary reading:

Wild Hearts in Uniform — Gwyneth Jones
Denvention 3 Guest of Honour Speech — Lois McMaster Bujold

Letters to the usual address; and, as ever, if your copy doesn’t arrive in a timely fashion, let us know. Otherwise, apologies for the quiet period around here — very busy with the day job at the moment, and I’m off to Montreal (for all of 48 hours!) tomorrow.