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the genre's premiere review magazine for short SF & Fantasy since 1993

Galaxy's Edge #10, September/October 2014

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Galaxy's Edge #10, September 2014

I, Arachnobot” by Brian Trent
“Eine Kleine Nachtfilm” by Alvaro Zinos-Amaro
“God Walks Into a Bar” by Larry Niven
“Neep” by K. C. Norton
“Wourism” by Ian Whates
“Exemplar” by Mercedes Lackey


Reviewed by Michelle Ristuccia

I, Arachnobot” by Brian Trent tells the struggle of a robotic spider attempting to protect an old woman in a nursing home while under the compulsion of Asimov's laws of robotics. The arachnobot's wide interpretation of his conflicting programming is an entertaining logic puzzle that drives the plot while giving the arachnobot personality. “I, Arachnobot” is a delightful tribute to Asimov.

In “Eine Kleine Nachtfilm” (“One Little Nightfilm”) by Alvaro Zinos-Amaro, Doug and Jenn set up a movie for their fans, in a mysterious park where time itself has a different meaning. This piece urges the reader to think about art and happiness but may come off as quaint due to its lack of an aggressive antagonist.

Bartender Rick is a little surprised and very suspicious when a voice announces itself as God in “God Walks Into a Bar” by Larry Niven. Niven's story occurs in the Draco Tavern universe but stands solidly on its own. Niven delivers a sharp bit of dry humor in a classic SF setting.

In “Neep” by K. C. Norton, Neep Pluto yearns to escape from her chauvinist Gartner before he discovers that she is blooming and eats her. Norton writes a powerful character in a powerless situation, and the result is a moving tale with uncomfortable social themes of racism and sexism served boldly on the reader's plate.

“Wourism” by Ian Whates shows Ginny's growing dissatisfaction with her boyfriend Alex's maturity as they tour an urban battleground. Whates does well to make the reader squirm in the face of Alex's inability to appreciate the tragedy of war.

In “Exemplar” by Mercedes Lackey, teen magician Vickie finally joins her peers at an exclusive and top secret school, where she hopes to learn advanced magic and enjoy being herself. But first, Vickie meets head on with an aggressive clique that targets her and a homosexual classmate. This magic-school adventure has a plot that feels a bit overdone. A light read with keen details that add to the realism of this YA urban fantasy.

Michelle Ristuccia enjoys slowing down time in the middle of the night to read and review speculative fiction, because sleeping offspring are the best inspiration and motivation. You can find out more about her other writing projects and geeky obsessions by visiting her blog.