association-list a veritable mint for dunning-kruggerands

Asimov's April/May 2006

This isn’t going quite as quickly as I had hoped it would, partially because of a major computer outage yesterday. Hooray for spending a lot of money when you didn’t want to, with the possibility of having to spend a lot more to get the data back. I haven’t been keeping my backups up to date as I should have, and I guess that I’m paying for it now. Oh well.

In any case. Back to the task, before I do some more computer surgery in hopes of being able to avoid having to pay for data recovery. The April/May issue of Asimov’s is their yearly double issues. There are a couple of people who I’ve never read before, and one that I want to point out.

I’d vaguely heard of William Shunn before, but I’d never read any of his stuff. It seems right now that it’s all magazine sales, which is unfortunate, because it means that they’re going to be hard to get ahold of, at least until someone manages to bring out a collection or something. I have no idea if he’s working on a novel, but on the strength of his story here, entitled “Inclination”, I really rather hope so. I’d buy it in a heartbeat, but maybe I’m not the best person to ask on that mark, as I’m still threating to reach sixty on the unread shelf, despite quite a high rate of consuming the things. At one hundred I’m going to stop buying for a couple of months, I promise. So, this one is good. Good enough that I would seek out his other work, were any of it available in anything other than micropayment type ebooks, which, while a valiant effort, don’t really work for me for some reason. Perhaps it’s something that I’ll talk about at some later date, as I dream about a way out of the wage-earner trap that acutally has some interest for me. Again, hopefully there will be a collection or a novel out soon, because I’d really like to get my hands on more.

I wanted to hate Greg van Eekhout’s “The Osteomancer’s Son”, as it belongs to a brand of fantasy that I really don’t like, but it’s a charming story in its way, and I bet that a lot of people who don’t have my builtin preconceptions will like it a lot.

“The King’s Tail”, by Constance Cooper was pretty all right, but I felt that it needed to be longer to really reach its full impact. Still, I’ll be keeping my eye out, as it was entertainingly told and could lead somewhere.

There’s some other interesting stuff here, a Liz Williams story in her Banner of Souls setting, an entertaining short short by Wil McCarthy, and some interesting thought on Pyr and the state of contemporary SF by Norman Spinrad. Not a bad issue at all.

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