Tim Pratt recently won the 2007 Hugo Award for best short story with Impossible Dreams. The story’s main character, Pete, is a huge movie buff that stumbles across a new video store in his neighborhood. He doesn’t seem to understand how he missed the store before, but ventures in and finds an odd selection of movies which he though had been canceled, or made by different directors with different actors. What follows is an interesting commentary on movies which either were never made, were lost, or simply done differently. This is a truly awesome story with an excellently planned ending. It was a pleasure to read from start to finish. From the writing it either the author is a huge movie buff or his writing is so good that you’d never even suggest he wasn’t passionate about movies. Visit the link above and read the full story at Asimov’s Science Fiction.
Impossible Dreams by Tim Pratt
Isaac Asimov – The Last Question and The Last AnswerIsaac Asimov – The Last Question and The Last Answer
I’ve said here many times that Isaac Asimov is my favorite author. It wasn’t until a few years ago that I read “The Last Question,” Asimov’s favorite short story written by himself. Last night I stumbled across a story called “The Last Answer.” At first I thought, “hey, I’ve read this before,” then did a double-take. It was “Answer,” not “Question.” This story focused on the afterlife instead of entropy. They are both good stories, however I agree with Asimov in his opinion that “The Last Question” is better. I highly suggest reading them both, but I’m not sure what order to recommend. I’ll list the links in order of publication, so you decide. Read both stories before looking at the comments on either one, because they are filled with spoilers.
“The Last Question” – Isaac Asimov (1956)
“The Last Answer” – Isaac Asimov (1980)
Isaac Asimov’s Robots and Aliens Book 2: Renegade by Cordell ScottenIsaac Asimov’s Robots and Aliens Book 2: Renegade by Cordell Scotten
This review will most likely contain spoilers for any previous books in the series, read at your own risk.
In Renegade, Cordell Scotten describes an alien species far different than that of the wolf-like pack in Book1. I found it a bit hard to relate to this new species as well as I could with the wolf creatures. I think that Scotten might have been trying a bit too hard to come up with complex aliens. Most of the unique mannerisms that were described seemed like they came out of nowhere. One thing that I did like from this book was that the relationship between Derec and Ariel is developed a bit more. Also, we start to understand a bit more about the Key of Perihelion.
Black Market memories is a story about a settlement many light years away from Earth named Jamestown. The residents can be individuals that had crippled bodies of some sort, then were given the opportunity to be “free” in a Stellar Unit (SU). The brain is scanned over a period of time then digitized and placed into a mechanical body. I would not classify these as cyborgs, but essentially AI that controls a ship of sorts. Some use the settlements as a base for research trips to find new worlds. (more…)