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Analog - October 2006 by Stan Schmidt (Penny Press August 2006 / ) - Analog Science Fiction and Fact - October 2006 - Vol. CXXVI No. 10 - ISSN 1059-2113
Table of Contents: Serial: Rollback, Part I of IV by Robert J. Sawyer Novelettes: Takes Two to Tangle by Ben Bova * > From Wayfield, From Malagasy by Robert J. Howe Short Stories: Rival of Mars by David Walton * Nigerian Scam by Richard A. Lovett Science Fact: The Great Sumatran Earthquakes of 2005-5 by Richard A. Lovett * Probability Zero * SETI Triumphant by Richard Thieme & Aaron Ximm Reader's Departments: The Editor's Page * In Times to Come * The Alternate View by John G. Cramer * Biolog: Robert J. Howe * The Reference Library by Tom Easton * Brass Tacks * Upcoming Events by Anthony Lewis

The October issue of Analog is a very good one with all the stories getting a Very Good rating from me.

"Takes Two to Tangle" is another fun little story involving the diminutive Sam Gunn by Ben Bova. In this one, he commissions a friend to build a matter-transmitting machine but this is opposed by a beautiful woman who is the Bishop of a new religion. What happened makes for an amusing tale. More serious is "From Wayfield, From Malagasy" by Robert J. Howe. In this story, the captain of a ship stranded on a primitive planet must make the right moral decision to save his crew. This one works out rather nicely.

"Rival of Mars" by David Walton is set in a future in which all babies are born through surrogates. A man whose girlfriend is just such a surrogate learns something from her experience. Finally, Richard A. Lovett gives us a science fictional version of the classic Internet "Nigerian Scam." This one involves aliens and has a very clever ending.

This issue is well worth picking up!

Asimov's Science Fiction - September 2006 by Sheila Williams (ed) (Penny Press August 2006 / ) - Asimov's Science Fiction - September 2006 - Vol. 30 No. 9 - (Whole Number 368) - ISSN 1065-2698
Table of Contents: Novelettes: Sunlight or Rock by John Kessel * Godburned by Karen Jordan Allen * Postsingular by Rudy Rucker Short Stories: The Girl in the Empty Apartment by Jack Skillingstead * Primates by David D. Levine * We Are the Cat by Carl Frederick * Silence in Florence by Ian Creasey Poetry: Widow of the Android-Robot Time Wars by Vincent Miskell * The Two Friends by Tom Disch Departments: Editorial: 2006 Readers' Awards by Sheila Williams * Reflections: The Kraken by Robert Silverberg * Thought Experiments: Barbarian Confessions by Kristine Kathryn Rusch * Science Fiction Sudokus by Ruhan Zhao & Lee Martin * On Books by Paul Di Filippo * The SF Conventional Calendar by Erwin S. Strauss

The September issue of Asimov's Science Fiction has a pretty good mix of stories, half Very Good & half still worth reading.

Rudy Rucker's "Postsingular" is a sequel to his previous story "Chu and the Nants" and just as entertaining. Chu is a young autistic boy whose father is a brilliant inventor. This time, he invents "orphids" (radio frequency tracking devices - RFID's) which are microscopic but powerful. He unleashes them into the world and they link everyone up so that everyone has access to everything. This causes some serious consequences. "Primates" by David D. Levine is an exciting tale about a man forced to help a crazed hunter find Bigfoot. What he finds forces him to make an important decision. "We Are The Cat" is a nice little story by Carl Frederick, usually published in Analog. Three men are trapped in a cave. While discussing Theoretical Physics and Scroedinger's Cat, they must find a way out. The story has a great ending. "Silence in Florence" by Ian Creasey is set in the Florence of Galileo's time. A woman realizes that strange visitors covered by robes are something unusual and she asks them for a miracle.

The other stories are a little less good but still worth reading. "Sunlight or Rock" is set in a very interesting world in which a young man named Erno must find rent money. The problem is that there is not really much of a story here, although the culture of the world is very well portrayed. "Godburned" by Karen Jordan Allen is the story of an old woman who finally realizes her heart's desire to see ancient Aztec sites in Mexico. The trip has a deeper effect on her than she anticipated. Finally, there is Jack Skillingstead's "Girl in the Empty Apartment." This is the story of a man named Joe who meets a fascinating young woman at the opening of his play. She helps him deal with a crisis in his life.

All in all, this is a nice little issue, with the addition of interesting articles by Robert Silverberg and Kristine Kathryn Rusch and two Science Fiction Sudoku puzzles thrown in for good measure.

Interzone #205 - August 2006 by (TTA Press August 2006 / ) - Interzone #205 - August 2006
Table of Contents: Fiction: This Happens by David Mace * The Measure of Eternity by Sean McMullen * In the River by Justin Stanchfield * 2+2=5 by Rudy Rucker & Terry Bisson * Blue Glass Pebbles by Steven Mills Interviews: Steve Erickson interviewed by Andrew Humphrey * Steven Erikson interviewed by David Lee Stone * Paul Di Filippo interviewed by Andrew Hedgecock Non-fiction: Ansible Link by David Langford * Editorial: Interzone on tour * Scores by John Clute * Mutant Popcorn (films) by Nick Lowe * Book Reviews

The August issue of Interzone is up to it's usual high standards with all the stories rating a Very Good from me.

"This Happens" by David Mace is a powerful little story that is not SF but more factual. It shows us in detail what it's like to be "collateral damage" in a war. Mace's story can make even the most ardent hawk think about the consequences of even a "careful" bombing. Sean McMullen's "The Measure of Eternity" is a fantasy tale with a scientific base. Set in a land called Ubar, it is the story of a young woman who meets a wise man who teaches her the value of nothing. "In the River" by Justin Stanchfield tells us about a woman who has to become alien to make contact with an alien culture. Becoming human again is not easy.

"2+2=5" is just the sort of story you'd expect from a collaboration of Rudy Rucker and Terry Bisson. All I can say about it is that it is a mathematical fantasy of a truly different type. "Blue Grass Pebbles" by Steven Mills is the longest story in this issue. It is set in a future in which "Western Canada" has become a separate country and has what the world needs most - water. The founder of this country takes a radical step to prevent the world from taking their precious resource in a very chilling tale.

Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction - Oct/Nov 2006 by Gordon Van Gelder (Ed.) (Spilogale, Inc. August 2006 / ) - Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction October/November 2006.

Table of Contents:
Novellas: Abandon the Ruins 101 Charles Coleman Finlay Novelets El Regalo 51 Peter S. Beagle * Pop Squad 168 Paolo Bacigalupi * Pol Pot's Beautiful Daughter (Fantasy) 203 Geoff Ryman Short Stories Revelation 10 Albert E. Cowdrey * Killers 88 Carol Emshwiller * ...With By Good Intentions 158 Carrie Richerson Departments Editorial 6 Gordon Van Gelder * Books to Look For 32 Charles de Lint * Books 40 Elizabeth Hand * Films: The Globalization of Leaping Kicks 153 Kathi Maio * Science: Happy Birthday Ben Franklin 195 Paul Doherty and Pat Murphy * Coming Attractions 202 * Competition #72 238 * Curiosities 242 Paul Di Filippo * Cartoons: Arthur Masear (31), J.P. Rini (87), Tom Cheney (100) * Cover: "White Goddess" BY Max Bertolini

I always look forward to the October/November issue of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction but this one far exceeded my expectations. It's unusual that I rate two stories in the same issue as Excellent. Well, this time there are only two stories that I did not rate as Excellent...and they were still Very Good!

(see review)

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