Thursday, September 27, 2007

"Subterranean" magazine, Summer 2007 issue: 8 stories

List below is of stories in the online magazine, ranked by quality - best first. My rating in brackets. "Download" link fetches individual stories, & is also found in my review articles. Full issue of magazine available here.

  1. Charles de Lint's "Make a Joyful Noise" (A); download: Very good motivational story, presented as a fantasy. An old woman finally prepares to outgrow the demons of her past. Added to my best of the year 2007 picks.
  2. Mike Resnik's "Carnival Knowledge: A Lucifer Jones Story" (A); download: Not sf. A conman gets too greedy during Rio Carnival.
  3. Gene Wolfe's "Unrequited Love" (B); download: An Asimovian robot story.
  4. Rachel Swirsky's "Dispersed by the Sun, Melting in the Wind" (B); download: Well written story about the last days of humanity. But rather pessimistic.
  5. Charles Stross' "Snowball's Chance" (C); download: Humor. A criminal cons the Devil.
  6. Elizabeth Bear's "Black is the Color" (C); download: Not sf. A monster hunts & kills a young girl.
  7. C S E Cooney's "Stone Shoes" (C); download: A piece of fantasy/horror. A society of very violent humans with unfamiliar morals, & of magical creatures, among them shape shifters. A mother who physically sews up the lips of her little child because he speaks too much, & leaves him sewed for 3 days! Forces her other child to wear shoes made of solid granite so he won't go wandering off when she is not looking! And where kids kill their mother & eat her!
  8. Joe R Lansdale's "Coat" (C); download: Not sf. Easily the worst story in this issue. A monster of a man kills a stranger because he is wearing an out-of-fashion coat! Takes away the coat. We learn the coat reminded him of his own humble beginnings. Kills himself in his madness during the night.