Short Story Review – A Matter of nurture by August von Orth

January 13, 2019

This is the first single short story I have reviewed as I normally critique complete short story collections.  The story is part of a collection from different authors featured in the Canadian Science Fiction magazine, “Neo-opsis”.  It is an intriguing tale set in a dystopian world.  On reading the first few lines I struggled with point-of-view but as I read on it soon became clear on whose view point the story was written.  This may have been deliberate as the assassin protagonist was clearly mixed up about who she really was.

It took me a couple of readings to determine what was happening in the narrative but this did not matter as the story was brief and it became clear that the protagonist was a victim of mind control.  It made me think and I do not mind that as I like story’s that make me think.  I understand that it is only available in the pages of the magazine so check it out as I am sure sci-fi fans will not be disappointed.

Keith Jahans
Editor, Peatmore Press

Published in Canada

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Book Review – Caged by Paul Falk

May 26, 2018

This is a novella written in the first person.  The story reads like an official report.  But this is okay as the protagonist, Jack Toback, is a government servant brought up through the ranks of a USA prison service.  He makes some small attempts at humour, which though few, fit into his personality.

He is put in charge of a revolutionary correctional facility run by robots and there is a great deal of description about their development and how they work.  Although the narrative is set in the future it is very relevant to the current time as the use of electronic technology and robots are becoming more integrated into our society.  The story left a number of issues unresolved.  This is not a unique or bad idea as it keeps the reader thinking about the various forces influencing the outcome of the automated prison experiment.

There is certainly potential here to expand the plot further and develop it into a novel or as a series of shorter stories.  The detailed style of writing may not be to everyone’s taste but it locked me in to turning the pages of my Kindle right to the end.  I can recommend it to any lover of dystopian fiction.

Keith Jahans

Caged is available on Amazon’s Kindle Store for $1.40 / £0.99

 


Book Review – The Invisible Man by H. G. Wells

January 21, 2013

A classic tale of what can happen when a scientific experiment produces an irreversible result.  Wells was a Master of Science Fiction.  He describes the science of visibility in great detail so that his protagonist’s experiment becomes believable.  The attempts of the protagonist to regain normality are cautionary and shocking.  This is a tale that has been imitated many times on film and TV but the original outshines all these and remains well worth reading.

ivman coverpic

The Invisible Man by H. G. Well is out of copyright
and can be downloaded free of charge in a variety of ebook formats from Project Gutenberg.