Abyss & Apex Issue 37: 1st Quarter 2011
by Wendy S. Delmater
Review by Sam Tomaino
Abyss & Apex Online Magazine
Date: 24 January 2011
The newest issue of online magazine Abyss And Apex is #37 and it's another good one.
The issue begins with "Of Ambergris, Blood, and Brandy" by J. Kathleen Cheney. This is a rich fantasy set in a place called the Golden City, Oriana Paredes is one of the sea folk who are banned in the city on the Prince's orders. She had been working as a spy as a companion to a young girl named Isabel Amaral, until she was murdered as part of an artist's project to recreate the Golden City as a City Under the Sea. She is intent on avenging Isabel's death and winds up in the house of the Ferrierra family, where she finds intrigue and murder. This was a well-developed story and a good start to this issue.
Next up, is "A New Bridge Across the Lethe" by Howard V. Hendrix. Our narrator is a man who suffered from severe retrograde amnesia, only being able to make memories last twenty seconds, since 1952, when he was 26. In the present day, he has had an operation that has cured him. We see his new life through a journal. His mind is expanding, due to the treatment, but there are drawbacks, too. This was a poignant, bittersweet tale.
In "Mind-Diver" by Vylar Kaftan, Dr. Faisal Rashid is called in on the case of Mark Freedman, an executive for a company called HEC, who has overdosed on a drug called bluecop. Rashid is a mind-diver who specializes on restoring people's e-scape (emotional landscape). His mind-dive into Freedman's damaged e-scape reveals things to him. Kaftan has written another nice little story, that also tells us something of Rashid's philosophy. I'd like to see more stories with this character.
"Twice Given" by Lindsey Duncan features Litevi who wants her sister, the priestess Taras, to have perfect happiness. How she goes about achieving that makes for a good story.
Lael Salaets' "The Halo Wave" is the story of Krid Yarii, a man suffering from something called Interface Dysunction Syndrome, which has bounced him out of the military. He is hired, by Captain Ima of River's Edge to be a navigator and co-pilot on a rescue mission for a freighter called Halo Wave, somewhere in a place called Tesho's ring. This, too, was an exciting, imaginative story.
The issue also has a flash fiction story, "The Last Tower" by C.J. Cherryh. An old man, living in a tower on the edge of Faery, is threatened by soldiers who want his tower. He must call on as much magic as he has in this beautiful little piece.
Abyss and Apex is an online magazine. They fund themselves with PayPal donations. Check them out at www.abyssandapex.com.