Analog - Jan/Feb 2007
by Stan Schmidt (Ed.)
Edited by Stan Schmidt
Dell Publishing Zine ISBN/ITEM#: 1059-2113
Date: December 2006 /
Analog Science Fiction and Fact – Vol. CxxVII, No. 1 & 2, ISSN 1059-2113
Table of Contents: Serial: Rollback (conclusion) by Robert J. Sawyer Novellas: Emerald River, Pearl Sky by Rajnar Vajra * Numerous Citations by E. Mark Mitchell Novelettes: Super Gyro by Grey Rollins * Double Helix, Downward Gyre by Carl Frederick Short Stories: The Face of Hate by Stephen L. Burns * Radical Acceptance by David w. Goldman * Exposure Therapy by R. Emrys Gordon * The Taste of Miracles by Kristine Kathryn Rusch * The Unrung Bells of the Marie Celeste by Richard A. Lovett * If Only We Knew by Jerry Oltion Science Fact: Shielding a Polar Lunar Base by Franklin Cocks * After Gas: Are We Ready for the End of Oil? by Richard A. Lovett Special Feature: How to Write Something You Don't Know Anything About by Richard A. Lovett Reader's Departments: The Editor's Page * The Alternate View by Jeffery D. Kooistra * The Reference Library by Tom Easton * Brass Tacks * The 2006 Index and Analytical Laboratory Ballot * In Times to Come * Upcoming Events by Anthony Lewis
The January/February 2007 issue is a double issue but unfortunately, it's not particularly special. Most of the stories got a Very Good from me but a couple were not good at all.
"Emerald River, Pearl Sky" by Rajnar Vajra is an interesting story about a far future where much technology has been destroyed but people still carry chips inside them that can do "magic". The story centers on a master wizard named Vincas at a gathering of his peers which shows that things are changing again. E. Mark Mitchell's "Numerous Citations" is the story of how a minor technological development leads to a huge societal change. Ex-cons are implanted with devices that are hooked up to a computer system which directs them to help out with law enforcement. This catches on and soon every event is monitored and mankind is guided by the advice of the all-knowing computers which are truly objective. I still remain skeptical that this would work but it makes for a good story. In "Super Gyro", Grey Rollins gives us a tale about a future in which many people have been genetically enhanced. Linus is an unenhanced educated man who is forced to work in a fast food place. He shows that he can still do a lot with just his wits and the title turns out to be a bit of a pun. "The Face of Hate" by Stephen L. Burns is a poignant story about a woman who so hated aliens that they thought the whole human race was evil. While this seems a bit of an over-reaction, the end of the story more than makes up for that.
R. Emrys Gordon's "Exposure Therapy" is a nice little story of a woman has been communicating with aliens without seeing them. When she sees what they look like, she must find a way to overcome her revulsion at their appearance. Kristine Kathryn Rusch tells a touching little short-short about how two people celebrate Christmas in the future. "The Unrung Bells of the Marie Celeste" by Richard A. Lovett is the story of an astronaut who is going on a hyper-space voyage that no one else has returned from. We find out why and we learn much about the astronaut and the choices he made with his life. Last, there is "If Only We Knew" by Jerry Oltion in which a man finds out that he is something other than human. How he learns to deal with it is a good little story.
There are two other stories which I did not like at all. "Double Helix, Downward Gyre" by Carl Frederick is yet another polemic masquerading as a story. Frederick tells of a future repressive society that just doesn't seem likely to happen. Editor Stanley Schmidt should recognize that these are just tiresome. David W. Goldman's "Radical Acceptance" tries to be a funny story but is another attack on how stupid religious people are. Aliens threaten to keep us from space as long as we still believe in angels. One man is willing to sell out the human race to meet their demands. How this is a happy ending escapes me.
Most of this issue is pretty good but Stanley Schmidt's politicizing of the magazine hurts it a bit. This gets a qualified recommendation.
(Source: Dell Publishing)