Tag Archives: publisher: lightspeed magazine

And You Shall Know Her by the Trail of Dead by Brooke Bolander

And You Shall Know Her by the Trail of Dead

And You Shall Know Her by the Trail of Dead by Brooke Bolander

Published in: Lightspeed Magazine, Issue 57, February 2015
Rating: 4 stars (★★★★☆)

The job has gone completely wrong. Tasked with breaking a prominent mobster’s son out of the computer system he had no business being in, they knew the job would be risky. But Rhye wasn’t prepared for them to shoot Rack before they were even close to being finished. Her only option now is to hook up to the interface and get the kid out herself. And maybe try to save Rack in the process. He’s in there somewhere, after all.

The summary above is brief, but with this being a novelette, I don’t want to give away everything. In a future where people can connect directly into computer systems, leaving their bodies to explore new worlds, there are new frontiers on all accounts. And although Rhye is a loner, she’s found somewhat of a kindred spirit in Rack. The last think she wants is to face the thought of not seeing him again.

The writing here is masterful. Through Rhye going in and trying to finish the job, readers learn so much about these characters. We get just enough hint of backstory to find out why they’re a team. But the way events unfold, we learn so much about what makes both individuals tick. The story is driven just as much by the characters as it is the action. And that’s something I really loved about it.

I hadn’t pulled this one up until it was named a Hugo finalist. And I’m so glad that it’s on that list. It’s not only a great example of great science fiction writing, but it demonstrates masterful use of the novelette length and format.

And it’s free! Check it out!

Each to Each by Seanan McGuire

Title: Each to Each
Author: Seanan McGuire
Published: June 2014
Pages: ~17
Publisher: Lightspeed Magazine (part of Women Destroy Science Fiction! issue)
Direct Link: link
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

Seanan McGuire is a master of world-building as demonstrated in this short but incredibly engaging story.  Set in a future where the navy is made up entirely of genetically modified women made to be more like mermaids, no part of it seems out of place or farfetched, and the reader can very easily place oneself into this world.  The character of the narrator has a strong, clear, and unique voice and everything just flows well.  I hesitate to delve too much more into the details at the risk of spoiling too much (always a much higher risk when dealing with shorter fiction).  I definitely recommend this – the only drawback I found is that I got so immersed in this world and this story, I want more…