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Asimov's Science Fiction – June 2009 – Vol. 33 Nos.6 – (Whole Numbers 401 )
Edited by Sheila Williams
Cover Artist: Catmando/
Review by Sam Tomaino
Asimov's Science Fiction  ISBN/ITEM#: 1065-2698
Date: 30 March 2009

Links: Asimov's Website / Pub Info / Table of Contents /

The June 2009 issue of Asimov's Science Fiction has stories by James Patrick Kelly, Tom Purdom, Chris Willrich, John Alfred Taylor, Eric Brown, and Sandra MacDonald, along with the usual columns!

Asimov's Science Fiction 's June 2009 issue is a great one, with all the stories very enjoyable and one deserving of a Hugo

James Patrick Kelly contributes his annual June story in "Going Deep". Mariska is a 13 year-old girl in 2159. She has much if the same concerns as teenagers do now but; she is a clone of a famous spacer, her father is hired, her bedroom is intelligent and her boyfriend picked at infancy. She tries to deal with it and does in this well-written tale.

Tom Purdom is one of the best writers out there and "Controlled Experiment" is proof of that. It takes place in a reasonably near-future in which treatments allow people to live practically forever. This has far-reaching effects. For instance, what do you do with convicts serving life sentences without parole? Bud Weldon had been a kid whose mischievous prank had become murder. More than sixty years later he is released under some controls. But there are always some people out there who have other ideas. Some are just "mischiefs" themselves. This was a great story with well-drawn characters. It will be on my novelette short-list for the Hugos, next year.

Jacyn Wilde becomes a "Bare Forked, Animal" in the story by John Alfred Taylor. In a future in which everything is computer-controlled, his locator-ship stops working and he can't find a way to contact the "real" world. This was a nice cautionary tale.

In "Cold Testing" by Eric Brown, Ed is the captain of a spaceship called A Long Way From Home and Karrie is his long-time engineer. The new co-pilot is Ella, a beautiful AI for whom Ed has developed feelings. Before heading out into a dangerous part of space, Ed takes the ship to a planet to "cold test" it, to see if it can withstand deep cold. More is going on in this nicely-done piece.

"The Monsters of Morgan Island" by Sandra MacDonald features Mary, a shy, young girl who rescues a little "monster" from imprisonment in a pit and takes care of it for a while. Things happen after that, but the author lets us speculate what in this haunting little tale.

The issue concludes with "Sails the Morne" by Chris Willrich. This one is a rich space adventure with a cocky captain, a good crew and fascinating aliens. "Brick" Chin is the captain of the Eight Ball, charged with carrying the Gospel of John portion of the Book of Kells to an exhibition. On board are various alien diplomats. When a pirate ship appears out of nowhere, things get really interesting. This one was thoroughly enjoyable.

Asimov's Science Fiction reaches its 401st issue in style. Subscribe!

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