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NOVELLAS "Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling" by L.X. Beckett NOVELETS "Visible Cities" by Rachel Pollack "Broken Wings" by William Ledbetter SHORT STORIES "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal "The Prevaricator" by Matthew Hughes "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" by Corey Flintoff "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clarke "Bedtime Story" by James Sallis "Morbier" by R.S. NOVELLAS "Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling" by L.X. Beckett NOVELETS "Visible Cities" by Rachel Pollack "Broken Wings" by William Ledbetter SHORT STORIES "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal "The Prevaricator" by Matthew Hughes "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" by Corey Flintoff "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clarke "Bedtime Story" by James Sallis "Morbier" by R.S. Benedict "Hainted" by Ashley Blooms POEMS "Red Rising" by Mary Soon Lee DEPARTMENTS "Books to Look For" by Charles de Lint "Musing on Books" by Michelle West "Science: Why Do Kites Fly?" by Jerry Oltion "Films: In the Queue" by David J. Skal "Coming Attractions" "Curiosities" by Paul Di Filippo CARTOONS Nick Downes, Bill Long, Danny Shanahan, COVER "Big Mars" by Bob Eggleton


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NOVELLAS "Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling" by L.X. Beckett NOVELETS "Visible Cities" by Rachel Pollack "Broken Wings" by William Ledbetter SHORT STORIES "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal "The Prevaricator" by Matthew Hughes "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" by Corey Flintoff "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clarke "Bedtime Story" by James Sallis "Morbier" by R.S. NOVELLAS "Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling" by L.X. Beckett NOVELETS "Visible Cities" by Rachel Pollack "Broken Wings" by William Ledbetter SHORT STORIES "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal "The Prevaricator" by Matthew Hughes "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" by Corey Flintoff "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clarke "Bedtime Story" by James Sallis "Morbier" by R.S. Benedict "Hainted" by Ashley Blooms POEMS "Red Rising" by Mary Soon Lee DEPARTMENTS "Books to Look For" by Charles de Lint "Musing on Books" by Michelle West "Science: Why Do Kites Fly?" by Jerry Oltion "Films: In the Queue" by David J. Skal "Coming Attractions" "Curiosities" by Paul Di Filippo CARTOONS Nick Downes, Bill Long, Danny Shanahan, COVER "Big Mars" by Bob Eggleton

30 review for The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August 2018

  1. 5 out of 5

    Karl

    This was purchased for the Sallis an Hughes specifically which were approximately a dozen pages long each, and worth the price of the magazine. It was mostly read in the car when out and about and waiting time needed to be filled. As per usual I read the non-fiction first. Contents: NOVELLAS 075 - “Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling” – L.X. Beckett NOVELETS 164 - "Visible Cities" – Rachel Pollack 233 -"Broken Wings" – William Ledbetter SHORT STORIES 006 - "The Phobos Experience" – Mary Robinette Ko This was purchased for the Sallis an Hughes specifically which were approximately a dozen pages long each, and worth the price of the magazine. It was mostly read in the car when out and about and waiting time needed to be filled. As per usual I read the non-fiction first. Contents: NOVELLAS 075 - “Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling” – L.X. Beckett NOVELETS 164 - "Visible Cities" – Rachel Pollack 233 -"Broken Wings" – William Ledbetter SHORT STORIES 006 - "The Phobos Experience" – Mary Robinette Kowal 026 - "The Prevaricator" – Matthew Hughes 043 - "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" – Corey Flintoff 152 - "The Adjunct" – Cassandra Rose Clarke 188 - "Bedtime Story – James Sallis 204 - "Morbier" – R.S. Benedict 218 - "Hainted" – Ashley Blooms POEMS 150 - "Red Rising"– Mary Soon Lee DEPARTMENTS 057 - Books to Look For – Charles de Lint 066 - Musing on Books – Michelle West 193 - Science: Why Do Kites Fly? – Jerry Oltion 199- Films: In the Queue – David J. Skal 256 - Coming Attractions 258 - Curiosities – Paul Di Filippo CARTOONS Nick Downes, Bill Long, Danny Shanahan COVER - "Big Mars" By Bob Eggleton

  2. 5 out of 5

    Mary Soon Lee

    I liked every one of the ten stories in this issue of F&SF, and also appreciated their diversity. There are two science fiction stories with a backdrop of space exploration to accompany Bob Eggleton's wonderful cover art of Mars and its moons; there's dystopic science fiction; there's fantasy of the magic variety and of the encountering-magical-beings variety; there's time travel, and a very original take on summoning monsters, and a not-quite-ghost-story. Five of the stories particularly appeale I liked every one of the ten stories in this issue of F&SF, and also appreciated their diversity. There are two science fiction stories with a backdrop of space exploration to accompany Bob Eggleton's wonderful cover art of Mars and its moons; there's dystopic science fiction; there's fantasy of the magic variety and of the encountering-magical-beings variety; there's time travel, and a very original take on summoning monsters, and a not-quite-ghost-story. Five of the stories particularly appealed to me. Corey Flintoff's "The Queen of the Peri" is a very nicely told story that combines race car driving, Dubai, and djinns. The start of L. X. Beckett's "Freezing Rain, A Chance of Falling" confused me, but, once I sorted it out, I found this a darkly compelling and disturbing vision of what social media might do to us. Rachel Pollack's "Visible Cities" turns what might have been an underwhelming idea into a beautifully-rendered, gently-paced story. R. S. Benedict's "Morbier" raises the old question of whether you would kill Hitler as a baby, and makes it largely new through strong characterization and an alarming glimpse into the horrors of food catering. Ashley Blooms's "Hainted" draws on her knowledge of coal-mining to create a haunting not-quite-ghost story. Those five were all fine stories, but if I were forced to pick my favorite from this issue, it would be William Ledbetter's novelette, "Broken Wings." It's one of the two stories to accompany the Martian cover art, and that's a setting I'm drawn to. It's a fun, gripping, adventure where the heroine faces off against a villainous customs inspector. I liked both the heroine and the friend she's trying to help, each of them misfits in their own way. There's a sweetness to the ending that sealed the tale perfectly.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Beth Cato

    This was quite a diverse issue, and even the tales that weren't quite my taste were enticing enough that I read all the way through. My favorites were: "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" by Corey Flintoff, a fantastic example of ancient mythology made current and fresh. "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clark is a joke story seriously told. "Broken Wings" by William Ledbetter, I must say, I was biased toward because I read it in early form, and it was great to read it again. This was quite a diverse issue, and even the tales that weren't quite my taste were enticing enough that I read all the way through. My favorites were: "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" by Corey Flintoff, a fantastic example of ancient mythology made current and fresh. "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clark is a joke story seriously told. "Broken Wings" by William Ledbetter, I must say, I was biased toward because I read it in early form, and it was great to read it again.

  4. 5 out of 5

    John Loyd

    6 • The Phobos Experience • 20 pages by Mary Robinette Kowal Very Good+. Darlene, Mo and Lindholm are sent from their station on Mars to explore the caves of Phobos. When they get to that moon there is a surprise. 26 • The Prevaricator • 17 pages by Matthew Hughes Very Good. Alphonz is a con man. He had specialized in moving into a town and using a Ponzi scheme to swindle the marks. His regrets were the amount of seed capital and the expenditure of time. When he heard of a town that paid a wizar 6 • The Phobos Experience • 20 pages by Mary Robinette Kowal Very Good+. Darlene, Mo and Lindholm are sent from their station on Mars to explore the caves of Phobos. When they get to that moon there is a surprise. 26 • The Prevaricator • 17 pages by Matthew Hughes Very Good. Alphonz is a con man. He had specialized in moving into a town and using a Ponzi scheme to swindle the marks. His regrets were the amount of seed capital and the expenditure of time. When he heard of a town that paid a wizard to find a different place to live it sounds like something with far less outlay on his part. Now to research. 43 • The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time • 14 pages by Corey Flintoff Very Good. It is rumored Faiz Mungummery Kahn had an affair with the queen of the Peri. When he had to go off to war she told him to be faithful and he swore by his right hand he would. He came back not faithful and with a scar on his face. Now he has a crystal hand. Our narrator, a race car driver, is in a similar predicament and asking for advice before she shows up again. Nice character building and very clever plot. 75 • Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling • 75 pages by L. X. Beckett Good+. Drow is a struggling musician doing journalism to pay the bills. In a society that values social capital as much as money he becomes bankrupt as a story takes a bad turn. He turns to shoveling snow, a public service, in order to earn back some strokes. Tala sees him, and overhears him talking with his editor about a piece on clinics selling unnecessary treatment. Tala says she will help him go undercover. Some really good concepts. The effects of the treatment that he willingly put himself through as part of the undercover operation was a little heavy for me. 152 • The Adjunct • 12 pages by Cassandra Rose Clarke Good/VG. Miskatonic U. requires their papers to use a home grown bibliographic system that is just short of incomprehensible. The chairman calls Professor Bouvet to his office saying she, and all the teachers, have to make their students learn CFSR. Nice twist. 164 • Visible Cities • 24 pages by Rachel Pollack Good/Very Good. Carolien wasn't always an experienced traveler. This is how she got her start. One day she noticed something that ordinary folk do not. She is referred to someone in a bookstore who then refers her to her teacher. She learns magics and charms. Then on the 1023rd day there is no teacher. She looks through one visible city after another looking for him and in doing so learning more about herself. 188 • Bedtime Story • 5 pages by James Sallis OK. Jack is going to his home town to pick up his dead friend Edgar. Nice psychic connection premise, but rendered superfluous and given over to a punch line ending. 204 • Morbier • 14 pages by R. S. Benedict Very Good/Excellent. Somehow today is a disaster, but first let's get some back story. Trish meets Mara at the farmers' market. Trish is a cook at the country club, and helps Mara get a job waiting tables. Mara has little or no documentation, is quirky. Even says she's from the year 2093. Is it like Star Trek or dystopian? The second one. Outstanding build up. 218 • Hainted • 15 pages by Ashley Blooms Good. When you work in the mine you leave part of your essence behind as a haint. Dallas tells Johnny, that's her best friend's dad, there have been problems at home. He thinks there's a solution, reunite her dad with his haint. They go into the mine to get her dad's haint. 233 • Broken Wings • 22 pages by William Ledbetter Very Good+. Bernard finds an artifact in the belt and brings it back to Deimos. He shows it to his friend Marcie and asks her what they should do. Before they can do anything the annoying customs inspector barges in and impounds his potentially priceless cargo. Bernard has video, so outright theft isn't a worry, but this could tie up the artifact for months before he could sell it. Unexpected action and clever

  5. 5 out of 5

    Kam Yung Soh

    A better than average issue with nice stories by Matthew Hughes, Corey Flintoff, Ashley Blooms and William Ledbetter with an interesting story by Rachel Pollack about fantastic cities featured during a search by the protagonist. - "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal: an interesting story set in an alternate timeline where we have a colony on Mars. As astronaut there is tasked to help a military unit investigate the moon Phobos. An unexpected finding there hints at possible moves by t A better than average issue with nice stories by Matthew Hughes, Corey Flintoff, Ashley Blooms and William Ledbetter with an interesting story by Rachel Pollack about fantastic cities featured during a search by the protagonist. - "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal: an interesting story set in an alternate timeline where we have a colony on Mars. As astronaut there is tasked to help a military unit investigate the moon Phobos. An unexpected finding there hints at possible moves by the military to get a foothold in the Martian civilian colony. - "The Prevaricator" by Matthew Hughes: an entertaining piece about a boy who discovers early in life that he can get rewarded by creating and then taking away unpleasant situations that people are uncomfortable with. He grows rich by planning cons to create and then remove unpleasant social situations. Then he hits upon an idea to involve a wizard to create even more unpleasant situation. But that would eventually lead to a very uncomfortable situation for himself. - "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" by Corey Flintoff: a fantasy tale involving a beautiful unworldly being who will remove a promised body part if your promise to love the Peri is broken. One person has lost his hand to her. Now another comes to him, looking for help for an even more vital body part will be lost in his broken promise. - "Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling" by L.X. Beckett: in a future where wealth and social standing is determined by your social media popularity, one man loses it all when his attempt to gain social points by criticising another socialite backfires. Then, he is offered a chance to regain it by working on a story about illegal medical drugs by a very wealthy and 'artistic' eccentric lady. As the story proceeds, he begins to realise that the lady may be more interesting in turning him into part of her private, grotesque art work and has to figure out how to escape. - "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clarke: a funny story about an adjunct faculty member tasked to teach students at a college how to use a peculiar indexing and referencing system in their work. Trying to understand the system better (so she can teach it better) leads her to discover the sinister origins of the system as a means to take over the world. But, as it turns out, the world might be safe due to the students themselves. - "Visible Cities" by Rachel Pollack: growing up, a girl is suddenly aware of another world hidden from ours that only she can see. This draws the attention of a secret society who points her to a teacher to teach him. When the teacher vanishes, she goes on a journey to various kinds of hidden cities to find him. The conclusion of her search would be an interesting one and hints at a bigger plan that she will be part of. - "Bedtime Story" by James Sallis: a short, fragment of a story about a future when civilisation is apparently breaking down due to an alien virus. In this, a man looks for the body of his former partner. The journey would show how much the world has changed. - "Morbier" by R.S. Benedict: a chilling story set in a country club where waiters and waitresses suffer abuses while they work. One unusual person suddenly arrives and is given the job as a waitress. Her unusual behaviour climaxes when she claims to be a time-traveller and she has a terrible job to perform to the guests at an upcoming party. - "Hainted" by Ashley Blooms: a interesting story involving 'haints' which are parts of a person left behind in coal mines, squeezed out by the unrelenting pressure of working in such confined, stressful underground mining conditions. A boy convinces a girl that her father's haint must be found if she is to restore her father (who has been acting distant). But as she journeys into the coal mine and learns more about haints, she discovers that finding her father's haint may not be the best way to recover her father. - "Broken Wings" by William Ledbetter: an fast paced story about an asteroid miner who discovers an artifact and asks for the help of a flight dispatcher on Deimos to put his claim on it. But their plans are interrupted in a sudden and suspicious manner by a customs official. As news of the discovery spreads, the dispatcher will find herself involved in a web of intrigue and needs to think fast if she is to save the miner and the discovery.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Brian

    Always a pleasure.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Renee Babcock

    Another solid collection of stories. I particularly enjoyed Freezing Rain, A Chance of Falling by L. X. Beckett, Visible Cities by Rachel Pollack and Morbier by R. S. Benedict.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Adriel

    Good story selection

  9. 5 out of 5

    David H.

    This issue had 10 stories (1 novella, 2 novelettes, 7 short stories), 1 poem, and 5 nonfiction pieces, along with 3 cartoons. This was a such a good issue that I'm considering subscribing for 2020, though this may be because I love Mary Robinette Kowal's work so much. (I got this print issue for free last year, but of course, only got around to it now). In addition to Kowal's story "The Phobos Experience" (set in the Lady Astronaut universe), I ended up loving Rachel Pollack's "Visible Cities" (po This issue had 10 stories (1 novella, 2 novelettes, 7 short stories), 1 poem, and 5 nonfiction pieces, along with 3 cartoons. This was a such a good issue that I'm considering subscribing for 2020, though this may be because I love Mary Robinette Kowal's work so much. (I got this print issue for free last year, but of course, only got around to it now). In addition to Kowal's story "The Phobos Experience" (set in the Lady Astronaut universe), I ended up loving Rachel Pollack's "Visible Cities" (possibly a take on Calvino's Invisible Cities, but I haven't read any Calvino), Corey Flintoff's "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" (featuring djinn and peri), Matt Hughes's delightful Vancian pastiche "The Prevaricator," and quite possibly the funniest Cthulhu Mythos story I've read yet, Cassandra Rose Clarke's "The Adjunct." The other stories were pretty good, too, and Beckett's novella is set in the same universe as their new novel Gamechanger. This is the first F&SF I've read in a long time (and possibly ever), so I was a bit surprised that they have two separate book review columns (one by Charles de Lint, the other by Michelle (Sagara) West)--not that I'm complaining, as I usually like these columns.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Kenny V

    Always enjoyable. I'm very happy to finally be catching up on my subscription and did I mention Matthew Hughes was in this again? I really love how often he's been showing up lately. Always enjoyable. I'm very happy to finally be catching up on my subscription and did I mention Matthew Hughes was in this again? I really love how often he's been showing up lately.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Tad Kilgore

    Simply fantastic. Every story added to the Next.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Stephen

    I enjoyed 7 of the 10 stories! Very pleased with that ratio! "The Prevaricator" by Matthew Hughes - **** "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal - *** "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" by Corey Flintoff - ****1/2 Wow! I'm going to have to look for more from this author! "Freezing Rain, A Chance of Falling" by L. X. Beckett - *** "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clarke - **** "Visible Cities" by Rachel Pollack - *** "Bedtime Story" by James Sallis - * The one disappointment with this issue. I enjoyed 7 of the 10 stories! Very pleased with that ratio! "The Prevaricator" by Matthew Hughes - **** "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal - *** "The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time" by Corey Flintoff - ****1/2 Wow! I'm going to have to look for more from this author! "Freezing Rain, A Chance of Falling" by L. X. Beckett - *** "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clarke - **** "Visible Cities" by Rachel Pollack - *** "Bedtime Story" by James Sallis - * The one disappointment with this issue. Luckily, it was also the shortest story! "Morbier " by R. S. Benedict - ** "Hainted " by Ashley Blooms - ** "Broken Wings" by William Ledbetter - ***

  13. 5 out of 5

    Standback

    An absolutely stellar issue. It's got a university whose citation system is downright Lovecraftian; a waitress who just might be a time traveller; a novice shaman's tour of cities that have each made adjustments to what their denizens can see. It's got SF and haunting fantasy and a fairy hunt and a heist. It's a pretty amazing issue :) I plan to circle back and review this one properly, but until then: read this issue it's fantastic An absolutely stellar issue. It's got a university whose citation system is downright Lovecraftian; a waitress who just might be a time traveller; a novice shaman's tour of cities that have each made adjustments to what their denizens can see. It's got SF and haunting fantasy and a fairy hunt and a heist. It's a pretty amazing issue :) I plan to circle back and review this one properly, but until then: read this issue it's fantastic

  14. 4 out of 5

    J. Allen Nelson

    Another excellent collection of tales from the usual suspects.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Michael Frasca

    My favorite stories: - "The Prevaricator" by Matthew Hughes. Alphonz is very good at the scam, but he really shouldn't try to play a player. - "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clarke. Nobody Ever Died For Dear Old Rutgers, but what about Miskatonic U.? -"Hainted " by Ashley Blooms. The best story in this issue is from a newcomer. Every day coal miners leave a little bit of themselves behind in the mountain, until they are but a shadow of themselves. Can a young girl get the fragments of her dad back My favorite stories: - "The Prevaricator" by Matthew Hughes. Alphonz is very good at the scam, but he really shouldn't try to play a player. - "The Adjunct" by Cassandra Rose Clarke. Nobody Ever Died For Dear Old Rutgers, but what about Miskatonic U.? -"Hainted " by Ashley Blooms. The best story in this issue is from a newcomer. Every day coal miners leave a little bit of themselves behind in the mountain, until they are but a shadow of themselves. Can a young girl get the fragments of her dad back so she can be with him again? A very poetic and metaphorical tale. Bloom's descriptions of the "haints" are unsettling. Watch for future stories by this up-and-coming author.

  16. 4 out of 5

    StephanieNicole

    A space adventure set in the alternate Lady Astronaut timeline in the 1970s. It was a fun. However, the protagonist reminded me too much of Elma: she's a NavCom astronaut with a medical condition that compromises her abilities to function but somehow she overcomes that. Her voice wasn't distinctive enough from Elma's. The twist was unexpected; I liked seeing more political intrigue in the Lady Astronaut universe. A space adventure set in the alternate Lady Astronaut timeline in the 1970s. It was a fun. However, the protagonist reminded me too much of Elma: she's a NavCom astronaut with a medical condition that compromises her abilities to function but somehow she overcomes that. Her voice wasn't distinctive enough from Elma's. The twist was unexpected; I liked seeing more political intrigue in the Lady Astronaut universe.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    These stories were all basically enjoyable, but they also all felt too convenient and tidy. My favorites: The Adjunct (this one made me grin); The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time (I liked the blend of "old fantasy" and modern Dubai); Hainted (this one had the best ending, I think); The Prevaricator; Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling (this story had great world-building and it genuinely creeped me out, but again, the ending was too cute); Morbier. These stories were all basically enjoyable, but they also all felt too convenient and tidy. My favorites: The Adjunct (this one made me grin); The Queen of the Peri Takes Her Time (I liked the blend of "old fantasy" and modern Dubai); Hainted (this one had the best ending, I think); The Prevaricator; Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling (this story had great world-building and it genuinely creeped me out, but again, the ending was too cute); Morbier.

  18. 5 out of 5

    George Heintzelman

    Some very good stories. Unfortunately, I did not really enjoy the novella, but the two Phobos-based stories were great, and Matthew Hughes “The Prevaricator” was very fun. Flintoff’s “The Queen of the Peri” was a great little fairy tale, very nice for someone making the move to fiction from journalism.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Dana

    As with most good short stories, you want more. This is no different. It may be that I'll get more to this story since it's numbered 4.1 and only the first two full-length novels are published. In the meantime I'll have to make do with this quick look at a secret mission to Phobos and What They Find There. As with most good short stories, you want more. This is no different. It may be that I'll get more to this story since it's numbered 4.1 and only the first two full-length novels are published. In the meantime I'll have to make do with this quick look at a secret mission to Phobos and What They Find There.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    I only read "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal, not the whole magazine. This short story seemed like it could be a good start to a novella, but on it's own it didn't seem to have a point. Goodreads rating: 2 stars (it was ok) I only read "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal, not the whole magazine. This short story seemed like it could be a good start to a novella, but on it's own it didn't seem to have a point. Goodreads rating: 2 stars (it was ok)

  21. 5 out of 5

    Debbie

    some good stories, a couple meh.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Deborah

    "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal "The Phobos Experience" by Mary Robinette Kowal

  23. 5 out of 5

    Vicky

  24. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

  25. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

  26. 5 out of 5

    Goran

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

  28. 5 out of 5

    E. Garrison

  29. 4 out of 5

    Marissa Harwood

  30. 5 out of 5

    Michael Gabriel

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