Diabolical Plots #32A & B, October 2017
Reviewed by Adrian McCauley
“Lightning Dance” is a short character piece by Tamlyn Dreaver about Willa, a young woman who has just been rescued by her idol, the superhero known as Lightning Dance. There is no plot to this tale; it centers around the conversation between Willa and Lightning Dance on a rooftop in the rain, and is about how growing up and meeting your idols can jade your memories and expectations.
“Three Days of Unnamed Silence” by Daniel Ausema is set in a bizarro-tech world of propellers, computers and human-slaves, where members of society are ‘stripped of their names’ in a process that renders them mindless slaves to repeat simple tasks for the good of society.
The main character is selected for this process and tries to escape but is caught and ‘unnamed’. Then, labouring as one of the ‘grunts’ they regain slight traces of memory and try to escape again, this time inciting a rebellion.
“Three Days of Unnamed Silence” experiments with POV throughout each act, starting with first person and descending through second and third. This shift in view point cleverly mirrors the central idea of how society strips us of our identities. It is a clever and unusual tale and may be a hit or miss with readers if they do not appreciate the layers of commentary within.