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Cifiscape Volume II: The Twin Cities Paperback – March 11, 2012
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The first story, "Harris", was well written and followed the form of a short story well; there was action, clear enemies, and characters I empathized. I liked the setting of a shattered Minneapolis. This is the kind of setting I wanted to read about; finally a place that is not New York, or LA laying in ruins. However, the major stumbling block in this story is it kind of felt that you could have substituted any other city for the Little Apple. Besides using some landmarks, it really didn't feel like it was happening on Nicollet. I give that story 4/5.
At this point I was warmed up for the book, I was hoping that the rest of the book would have stories like this. The next story almost compelled me to delete the whole thing off my Kindle. "The Rotations of the Earth" had nothing to do with Sci-Fi other that one character constantly looking to the future. It didn't even take place in MN. 0/5
It was with some trepidation I read story three and some hope did return. "Lethal Options" was at least a Sci-Fi story that was quite nice as a short. A little preachy: Yes we could all ride bikes, oh wait, did you forget Minnesota gets cold 6 months out of the year? I did like one section of a drive down 95 that had gone to hell. 3/5
Upon seeing the title: "The Man with Two Hearts in His Rib Cage", my first thought was of Doctor Who visiting Minneapolis. I was expecting to see Matt Smith and his Blue Box flying over the Aqueducts while an army of Daleks marched down Robert Street as the Capital burned. What I got was a semi-confusing tale of a gigolo in China that lost itself half way through. 2/5
"Wardrobe Malfunction" was light-hearted, silly, and actually felt like it was happening in St. Paul. 4/5
"Fall of the World's Own Optimist." This was a comic and had nothing to do with Sci-Fi. It felt like it was added because the web comic was a friend of the editor. 0/5
"Bulls-eye Inc." suffered from, again, just passing reference to Minneapolis. It also felt like it was a piece of a larger novel cut down into a short story. 1/5
"Zombielzebub: Hell's Invasion" Ok, another comic. I think that my Gen 2 B&W Kindle might have ruined this one a bit, but for the life of me I could see no clear narration to the comic, nor could I tell what was going on in the pictures. Still, it seemed to have zombies. 1/5
"Little Hawk" well written and I'd like to see more by theses guys. 4/5
"Amos Was Here" I liked the idea of a barber having such power over others in a good way and in a way to help. 3/5
For the most part, when I finished, I felt blasé about the book. For $4.99 the price was good, so I didn't feel short changed, but I felt this could have been better. This book is a Saturday afternoon movie, it's cheap, cheesy, and wooden, but nothing else is on.