Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Short Fiction Tuesday

I enjoyed Lavie Tidhar's "The Language of the Whirlwind" this week. It's another post-apocalyptic story, but about as different from last week's choice as could be, within that context. This one is set in Tel-Aviv after a mysterious and inexplicable mountain appeared within the city and simultaneously the city is cut off from the outside world. It's the story of a priest of a new religion forming in response to the completely supernatural nature of these events. I sometimes wonder, with post-apocalyptic stories, if there's something a little too--how to put it?--trite or superficial with these stories of people surviving in a bleak landscape. This story has none of that. It's a rich story that's much more than gosh-wow images of an imagined future tragedy.

My focus in these blog posts has been on free online fiction in zines, but I also enjoyed this week finding Paolo Bacigalupi's "The Gambler." It appeared in the print anthology Fast Forward 2, but is available online as a sample of that anthology. I discovered it this week because it is nominated for a Nebula, and I've definitely enjoyed Paolo's work in the past.

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