Analog Science Fiction and Fact - November 2016 - Vol. CXXXVI No. 11
Edited by Trevor Quachri
Cover Artist: David A. Hardy
Review by Sam Tomaino
Analog Magazine / eMagazine ISBN/ITEM#: 1059-2113
Date: 29 October 2016
Links: Analog SF & F / How to Subscribe / Pub Info / Table of Contents /
The November 2016 issue of Analog is here and it's a pretty good issue.
The short fiction begins with the novelette "One Man's Dignity" by Mark Niemann-Ross. -+- Captain Theresa Jerwin is in command of the space station in Earth orbit and she has two problems. There's an abandoned transport pod next to the station that can't be disposed of because of legal problems. Jacob Ullesvern has been on the station so long that he would not be able to live easily or long in Earth gravity. In a classic Analog story, she finds a way of killing two birds with one stone. Perfect!
"Love Pops!" by Genevieve Williams -+- Charlotta Skarsgard is working undercover to protect Michael Brooks, a very near-future reality show (of the Bachelor type) star from a stalker. Really? There's not enough of this stuff on television? I don't want to read about it here.
"The Tattling Tats" by Jerry Oltion -+- After Christmas, Evan finds out the cool kids all have these neat tattoos that their parents got for them. He wonders why. They find out and thanks to his friend, Amanda, things work out great for him. Amusing.
"The Salesman" by Garrett Ashley -+- Edward finds a damaged robotic salesman in the cornfield and doesn't tell his stepfather about it. His stepfather is a jerk who hates new things. Ed contacts the robot's owners who arrange to have it picked up. Kind of anti-climactic.
"In the Absence of Instructions to the Contrary" by Frank Wu -+- Karl 3478 is an intelligent robot sent by Dr. Adeline Franzen to observe marine life on a remote Pacific island. Observe, but do not interfere. In his own way, he has fallen in love with Adeline, who has told him now to observe the octopuses out there. Karl does that faithfully, but something has changed. What should he do? Another well-told tale with a twist at the end.
"The Desolate Void" by Jay Werkheiser -+- Our narrator is a young man, hired to guide an older woman on a trip to the Saturnian moon, Enceladus. She is Marj Schuman, the daughter of a famous man who was obsessed with finding exobiological life. So was her mother. They both abandoned her as a child in their quest. Now, she follows them in a "Cat's in the Cradle" way on her quest for the same. She won't stop until she finds it or dies. Nicely done character study.
The fiction concludes with the novella "We Side With the Free" by Gary Rinehart. -+- The Trojan Confederacy, composed of "settlements in the Asteroid Belt and among the Trojan asteroids out in Jupiter's orbit" want their freedom from Earth. To get it, they have thrown a kilometer-long asteroid at Earth. It's up to the crew of the Belmont to intercept the asteroid and see what they can do. Good solid military-type science fiction with engaging characters.