Strange Horizons, 4 September 2006

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"The House Beyond Your Sky" by Benjamin Rosenbaum

"The House Beyond Your Sky" by Benjamin Rosenbaum is not a story that can be read through once, enjoyed, then tossed aside.  It’s more ambitious and, ultimately, more satisfying.
The story starts with Matthias, a sort of anchorite, who lives in what is likened to a hut that houses an infinite library of worlds.  One of the worlds that Matthias observes contains a little girl named Sophie.  Sophie’s family life is violent, and Matthias occasionally comforts her by speaking to her through her teddy bear.
Rosenbaum adeptly intertwines the stories of Matthias and Sophie so that they complement one another without being heavy-handed.  The story touches on religion in a way that is both respectful and interesting.  Especially nice is the idea of the interconnectedness of the two main characters.
While it is possible that this story may not appeal to every reader, for those who are willing to put forth a little effort, it is worth the challenge.