Jupiter XXVII: Praxidike – January 2010
Edited by Ian Redman
Cover Artist: Paul Drummond
Review by Sam Tomaino
Jupiter ISBN/ITEM#: 1740-069
Date: 22 January 2010
Here we are at another moon of Jupiter. This one is Praxidike for Jupiter XXVII, the January 2010 issue and it’s another good one.
The issue begins with "Bone Song" by Garrick Fincham. Wember is part of a colony run by the senior member of the Warren, a weak man named Malder. Malder only knows to go by The Instructions, a detailed blueprint for anything they need to do. Wember has dreams of something else, and he has the support of Manta Kee, a member of the race called the fosters. Wember is also in love with Elody, who Malder wants for himself. In his first published story, Fincham creates an interesting culture and good characters. He will be someone to watch.
The "Unlikely Messiah" in the story by W.R. Mitchell is a man from Earth named Fung who crash lands on a planet some 390 light years from Earth. While he and his friend and business partner, Winty, had been in cryogenic sleep, the ship had passed through a small wormhole transporting them that long distance and almost crashing them into a planet. His onboard computer saved the ship but his friend is dead. He had been about to die but was saved by the native species, a peaceful group of vegetarian telepaths that look like werewolves. Fung gets to know the people and especially a young boy that he calls Ted. This was a nicely done little story of first contact that was a joy to read.
"The Voidant Lance" by Huw Langridge is part of a series of stories about the Axiom Few, men who deal with perils to the planet. The leader of the group, Archer is alerted by his estranged father, Goddard, of an object headed toward Earth by a race called the Voidant. Archer, with the help of his colleagues, Geek and Davey, must find a way to save Earth from a catastrophic collision. But someone else shows up to advise them and their plans change. We are told that the next installment for the Axiom Few is at the author's wensite, (www.huwlangridge.co.uk) and it should be well worth checking out if the next story is as good as this one.
Last of all, we have "Swimming in the FastWarm Current" by Lee Russell. Spinner is a young member of an aquatic race and a bit of a rebel. He is in love with QuickFlip and would love to mate with her. His rebellious ways are unpopular with the leader of the pod, Scar Nose, who does not want Spinner to head for the current called the FastWarm. He wants QuikcFlip, too. Russell is another first-time author and he shows quite a bit of talent here.
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