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Assorted Magazines - 2020

(64 posts)

  1. digdug
    Member

    The old thread is not updating correctly....so here we go. The first couple of posts are repeats from the old thread.

    Just finished reading - Analog - January/February 2020

    http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/pl.cgi?756544+c

    As stated in another thread title, Analog has gone retro. At least with the look of the cover. I think it looks sharp and helps the magazine stand out at the news stand.

    Every issue this year will contain one reprint. Each from a different decade. This issue's reprint is from the 90's and its a really good story. Oltion and Castro intersperse wild headlines with story text that helps us get to know 'The Astronaut From Wyoming'.

    Along with that I count 3 more excellent stories.

    Harry Turtledove has fun with a riff on Moby Dick where the main character has a tail. Very well done.

    Sean McMullen has a near perfect story that postulates an invention from the past has been hidden for years. Now that it has been discovered ripples will be felt all through the literary world.

    Jay Werkheiser shows us an episode of first contact from both sides and neither the humans nor the aliens are quite sure what happened. Engrossing.

    There are many many more good stories included.

    Overall an excellent issue.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  2. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Asimov's - January/February 2020

    http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/pl.cgi?756459+c

    Neal Asher has an excellent story. A man meets an alien and things get stranger as they go.

    Allen M Steele's latest is also very good. Our hero gets into a duel with his greatest enemy.

    Lots of other good stories as well.

    Overall a Very Good issue

    Posted 4 months ago #
  3. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Broadswords and Blasters #12 - Winter 2020

    https://broadswordsandblasters.com/

    Well, I was on Amazon purchasing the latest copies of Clarkesworld and Galaxy's Edge... and their advertising worked again.

    After clicking the ad I found that B & B started in 2017 and published every quarter after that. I bought all 12 issues.

    They look professional enough on the outside.

    Then I found out that this latest issue will be the last and a double issue. Twice as big as the first 11 were.

    As for the fiction, there are 18 stories included and I had never read any of the authors before except for Andrew Miller who I had read once before.

    By My count there are 6 good stories, 7 that are just OK. and 5 that are less than OK.

    Richard Rubin's story of Commander Saturn is kind of like a Captain Future story but 6 or 7 levels dumber. Laughably bad.

    Steve DuBois presents an after the apocalypse story that is just as bad.

    I did like J. Rohr's story about a guy who harpoons wyverns.

    Overall an OK issue.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  4. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Clarkesworld #160 - January 2020

    http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/prior/issue_160/

    There was a very controversial story in this issue that was then pulled from the online edition at the request of the author.

    'I Sexually Identify as an Attack Helicopter' By Isabel Fall.

    The situation even made it to the 'mainstream' media.

    Here's a link to one of the many articles.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/01/sexually-identify-attack-helicopter/605170/

    I'm guessing if you order a print edition of the magazine from Amazon this story will not be in it any longer... but my print copy does include it.

    Predictably, I didn't care for the story. There was something of a story but the text was more a discussion of gender than a story.

    Naomi Kritzer also appears in this issue with another excellent tale.
    'Monster' makes you think.

    I count one excellent story, two that are OK and three less than OK.

    Overall lets go with OK

    Posted 4 months ago #
  5. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Galaxy's Edge #42 - January 2020

    https://www.amazon.com/Galaxys-Edge-Magazine-Issue-January/dp/1612424872/ref=sr_1_2?keywords=galaxys+edge+42&qid=1585792342&sr=8-2

    This is the last issue of Galaxy's Edge that was edited by Mike Resnick.

    My fave from the new stories is 'Thin Skinned' by Michael A. Clark.
    A team of scientists have travelled back in time to see the dinosaurs and things get a little tense.

    I didn't like Larry Hodges' short tale about 'Releasing Hitler'.

    Even the legendary writers included in this issue were not at their best.

    Overall a Pretty Good issue

    Posted 4 months ago #
  6. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Interzone #285 - January/February 2020

    https://shop.ttapress.com/collections/interzone/products/interzone-285-jan-feb-2020

    Andy Dudak has an interesting story about a woman who Salvages people.

    I didn't like the story from Daniel Bennett.

    Overall a good issue

    Posted 4 months ago #
  7. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Clarkesworld #161 - February 2020

    http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/prior/issue_161/

    Grace Chan's tale of 'Jigsaw Children' takes top honours for me. Our main protagonist changes her mind a few times along the way.

    I didn't like the tale from Malena Salazar Macia.

    Overall a good issue

    Posted 4 months ago #
  8. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Analog - March/April 2020

    https://www.analogsf.com/current-issue/

    Derek Kunsken takes top honours this time. His new novel starts serialization in this issue and it's a doozy. We get to know Venus pretty well in installment number one, but the next installment promises to go further afield. Can't wait.

    Catherine Wells presents another wonderful story. Our hero keeps on making the same mistake.

    Hayden Trenholm shows us a vehicle named Agnes who has 'Curious Algorithms'.

    Sean Monaghan comes through again with another winner. The characters are stuck on Mars and they have to make the best of it.

    Our fearless leader on this site ( C.C. ) has a story in this issue of Analog as well. It's a goodie. Our heroine makes her grandma proud.

    Overall an excellent issue.

    Posted 3 months ago #
  9. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Asimov's - March/April 2020

    https://www.asimovs.com/current-issue/

    We all know that Nancy Kress is a very good writer, but 'Semper Augustus' is on another level. It's a tour de force. Amazing.

    There are a few other good stories included as well.

    I didn't like Garrett Ashley's 'Skin'.

    Overall a good issue

    Posted 3 months ago #
  10. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Clarkesworld #162 - March 2020

    http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/prior/issue_162/

    D.A. Xiaolin Spires has a good story where a colourless craftsperson helps a half-human android.

    I didn't like M.L. Clark's confusing story.

    Overall a good issue

    Posted 3 months ago #
  11. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Galaxy's Edge #43 - March 2020

    http://www.galaxysedge.com/

    Well, this is the Mike Resnick tribute issue. There are many heartfelt odes to the wonderful man. And he really does sound like he was a great guy.

    I never met him in person but I did have an email correspondence with him some years ago. In this issue, new editor Lezli Robyn explains how she met Mr. Resnick first through EBay when she was purchasing something signed by Anne McCaffrey.

    I also purchased something on EBay from him and we shared a few emails. He even sent me a story via email that had just been purchased by Asimov's but had yet to see print.

    As for the fiction in this issue. My fave from the previously published stories was Resnick's own 'Distant Replay'. An old man sees someone he thinks he knows and things go on from there.

    I'm not usually a horror fan and Eleanor Wood's 'Lux Nocturna' could be published in any horror magazine but somehow I liked this one. A piano teacher keeps hearing strange noises.

    I didn't like Joe Haldeman's short this time.

    Overall a good issue.

    Posted 3 months ago #
  12. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Interzone #286 - March/April 2020

    http://www.ttapress.com/interzone/currentissue/

    My favourite story in the issue is Louis Evans'
    'Rocket Man'. Our hero dreams of Moscow every night.

    I didn't like the story from James Sallis. It started off OK but became more and more confusing.

    Overall an OK issue.

    Posted 3 months ago #
  13. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Space and Time #136 - Spring 2020

    http://spaceandtime.net/

    Sarah Avery's longer story concludes serialization in this issue. A mother will stop at nothing to retrieve her child that has been stolen.

    I didn't like the short story from Serena Jayne.

    Overall a pretty good issue.

    Posted 3 months ago #
  14. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - On Spec #113 - (April) 2020

    https://onspecmag.wpcomstaging.com/current-issue/

    I mentioned a few posts up that I thought a story by Steve DuBois was laughably bad. I stand by that opinion. So I am truly surprised to report that my favourite story in this issue of On Spec is by Steve DuBois. 'The Laughing Folk' is a fantasy set in a strange alternate present. I really liked the viewpoint character.

    There are a few other good stories included and no painful ones.

    Overall a good issue.

    Posted 3 months ago #
  15. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Clarkesworld #163 - April 2020

    http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/prior/issue_163/

    Chen Qiufan presents a scary idea where your debts are kept track in a new way. Very interesting.

    There are no bad stories and no repeats.

    Overall a good issue

    Posted 3 months ago #
  16. Mark Pontin
    Member

    Great cover to that issue of Clarkesworld, too.

    Posted 3 months ago #
  17. digdug
    Member

    yes Mark, I agree!

    would like to read the story based on that cover...

    but none to be had :(

    :)

    Posted 3 months ago #
  18. Mark Pontin
    Member

    Something to do with an expanding universe and travel backwards in time by FTL?

    Special Relativity says that only particles with zero rest mass can travel at light-speed. Moreover, the closer an object accelerates towards C, the more it approaches having infinite mass (and thus needs ever-nearer-to-infinite energy to accelerate it).

    So light-speed travel is ruled out. But apparently the equations for General Relativity still permit FTL (faster-than-light) travel. Except then you're also going back in time -- and the equations are pretty explicit on this point, that FTL is by definition time travel (and causality violation!).

    Still, in 2020 one needs more specific ontological/cosmological riffing than just the above for a story. I dunno.

    Posted 3 months ago #
  19. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Analog - May/June 2020

    https://www.analogsf.com/current-issue/

    The reprint this issue is 'Weyr Search' by Anne McCaffrey. Of course, it's the beginning of one of the most cherished series in all of SF and it doesn't disappoint upon rereading. Wonderful.

    Derek Kunsken's serial continues and we get to see more of Venus through some new characters eyes. Very well done.

    Neal Asher provides another excellent story. A diverse group explores a strange world.

    I didn't like the short short from Aimee Ogden.

    Overall a Very Good issue

    Posted 2 months ago #
  20. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Asimov's - May/June 2020

    https://www.asimovs.com/current-issue/

    Eleanor Arnason's 'Tunnels' is an excellent story that shows you what can happen when a corporation basically runs a planet.

    Many other good stories are included as well.

    Overall a good issue.

    By the Way, I've run out of current magazines to read. The latest issues of Clarkesworld, F&SF, Galaxy's Edge and Interzone should be in the mail but they have not arrived as of yet. I will have to delve into my collection of older unread issues. :)

    Posted 2 months ago #
  21. CWJ
    Member

    I really liked "Tunnels" as well. A classic mismatched-buddy story that works well. (As well as an economic parable, as Digdug alludes to--and here it works naturally with the story.) Arnason is always reliable, but this was a particularly good story. I even recommended it to my wife, who also liked it.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  22. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Absolute Magnitude #7 - Spring 1997

    http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/pl.cgi?56068+c

    Rajnar Vajra is an author I always enjoy. Most of his stories have been published in Analog. But, his first ever published story was in this issue of Absolute Magnitude. Our hero is never sure if he will be 'Passing the Arboli Test' or not. Mr. Vajra hasn't published anywhere since 2016. I hope he's not done.

    This issue features the second of four parts of Shariann Lewitt's novel 'Interface Masque'. I found it engrossing.

    Overall a good issue.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  23. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Interzone #169 - July 2001

    http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/pl.cgi?59010+c

    Neal Asher is an author I've had my eye on for a while now. It seemed like every story I read of his was excellent.... 'The Sea of Death' in this issue is not quite that strong but it is still my favourite story from this issue. Our hero explores a comet filled with tunnels.

    This issue of Interzone is almost an Ian R. MacLeod special issue. His story is the longest by far. There is an interview of the author and even a bibliography of all of his work up until this publication. 'Isabel of the Fall' was not a strong story for me.

    Overall a pretty good issue.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  24. Mark Pontin
    Member

    'Isabel of the Fall" is reprinted from INTERZONE itself back in 2001 and a MacLeod anthology in 2014. If one were going to reprint a MacLeod story for a MacLeod special issue, that isn't the one I'd pick.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  25. digdug
    Member

    Hi Mark,
    This is not a reprint. I read the 2001 issue last week and commented on it. I have run out of current magazines to read and I am reading older issues of assorted magazines :)

    Doug

    Posted 2 months ago #
  26. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Absolute Magnitude #3 - Spring 1995

    http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/pl.cgi?56070

    Janet Kagan has a story that will appeal to anyone who ever liked Math. Our heroine is not sure whether she wants to be proven wrong or not.

    There are no bad stories to be found so...

    Overall a good issue

    Posted 2 months ago #
  27. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Interzone #199 - July/August 2005

    http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/pl.cgi?116211+c

    Neal Asher's 'Garp & Geronamid' starts off like many lightweight tales. Our point-of-view character is a journalist. But it grows more and more serious as you read further. Powerful.

    I also liked the stories by Allan and Tolbert.

    Overall a very good issue.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  28. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Clarkesworld #164 - May 2020

    http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/

    Yes, back in 2020 again! Feels good to be back.

    I liked Ray Nayler's 'Albedo Season'. The new colony
    is facing a frightening situation.

    I also liked Bo Balder's 'Quantum Fish'. Our heroine doesn't receive the warmest of welcomes when she returns home after a long absence.

    The other stories were just OK.

    Overall a pretty good issue.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  29. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Interzone #287 - May/June 2020

    http://www.ttapress.com/interzone/currentissue/

    Eugenia Triantafyllou takes top honours this issue. Our hero is not sure if he qualifies as a real human or not.

    I didn't like Val Nolan's 'Make America Great Again'. Too political for my tastes.

    Overall an OK issue.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  30. digdug
    Member

    Just finished reading - Clarkesworld #107 - August 2015

    http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/prior/issue_107/

    I enjoyed re-reading Neal Asher's 'Softly Spoke the Gabbleduck' which was first published in Asimov's in 2005. Our hero plays tour guide for some spoiled rich folks.

    Other good stories were included from Ball, Devenport and Shoemaker.

    If I hadn't read the Asher story before I would rate the issue very good, but since I had let's go with good overall.

    Posted 2 months ago #

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