Strange Horizons, November 10, 2014

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Strange Horizons, November 10, 2014

“A Moon for the Unborn” by Indrapramit Das

Reviewed by Charles Payseur

A man and woman, fresh from a traumatizing experience on an alien world, face the prospect of moving on with their lives in Indrapramit Das‘ haunting “A Moon for the Unborn.” As part of an experimental breeding program on a world orbiting the moon Akir, Teresa and Vir lost a baby before it could be born only to see it wander the alien landscape as a child. For all children conceived by the project died before they were born and something about Akir’s light brought them back as ghosts to wander the camp each night. When Teresa and Vir return to Earth, they must face what happened and try move on, and decide not only to stay together, but to attempt once more to have a baby. Jumping back and forth through time and space, the story follows the couple as they struggle with what happened and as they finally reach a place where they can be whole and happy together. Dealing with incredibly serious subject matter, the story manages to be fluid and beautiful, filled with small moments of humanity and compassion. And while largely tragic and sad, the story does bring the characters and the reader through the loss and to a place where the healing can begin.

Charles Payseur lives with his partner and their growing herd of pets in the icy reaches of Wisconsin, where companionship, books, and craft beer get him through the long winters. His fiction has appeared or is forthcoming at Perihelion Science Fiction, Heroic Fantasy Quarterly, and Fantasy Scroll Magazine, among others. You can follow him on Twitter @ClowderofTwo