- File Size: 405 KB
- Print Length: 117 pages
- Publisher: Earthbound Fiction (December 23, 2012)
- Publication Date: December 23, 2012
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00ASN646I
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,217,570 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Dark Stars: The Year's Best Science Fiction Short Stories Kindle Edition
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I received this book free for a review, but the review is truly how I feel about the book.
I decided to post on female authored stories as the vast majority of science fiction is written by men, this is geek lit. Overall the stories rely on a clever idea played out in an alternative universe, often with a surprise ending. The level of the prose aims for a quick read but is not bad. These stories are meant to entertain. They are escapist reads. They deal with the consequences of the degradation of the earth.
By Deborah Walker
This very brief story centers on a woman piloting a space ship through the ghost nebula while the rest of the crew sleeps in a frozen type state (a very common science fiction device). We learn that she is 1000 light years from the "Shangai Factory Slums" where she grew up. As the story ends, she is looking forward to seeing her mother. Ok, sixty seconds to read this. First thought was why does the author make reference to Shangai factory slums. What is this meant to tell us about the future? Or is this story just kind of pointless light entertainment?
"Killing Jar Captives"
By Suzane Van Royon
This story starts out on an alien space ship, taking human captives back to the home planet of an insect like species that has conquered the Earth. The captives are in jars, with an alien creature tapped into their psyche draining their life experience. All of a sudden the ship hits a very bad meteor storm and ends up crashing to a planet, not earth. There are four survivors, one is a man, one a woman and two are some kind of alien entity, not sure of the ontology here, connected to the humans. When the man called the woman "Eve" I winched. Some decent descriptions of the conditions on the transport ship help make this an interesting story.
"Christmas Eve in New London"
By Patricia Correll
"Christmas Eve in New London" takes place somewhere in the galaxy that many residents of London migrated to when London became, due to horrible pollution and habit destruction, became virtually unfit for human habitation. It has been six years since the residents moved to New London. Since they got there no children have been born alive. At first women gave birth to corpses but for a long time no one has gotten pregnant. A disease killed all residents of New London under 14 or so. The story centers on a man who, every Christmas,manufactures and
delivers replicates of children. He picks up last years models, this years are just a bit bigger and developed. Everyone on his route is happy to see him. In an touch I found intriguing, he has programmed his replicants to always believe in Santa Claus. This was the story of the three I liked the most.
All of these stories seem to be a bit clichéd. All basically have one idea. There is little or no character development, the plots don't really interest you that much. Ok good entertainment reads and maybe I am too demanding.
Please Note: the author(s) provided me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Some thoughts on "Dark Stars"...
16 different stories from 16 different authors make up this collection of small tales. They are set in locations as near to home as Earth and as far away as on some starship on the edge of some remote and unknown galaxy.
As a whole the stories were well written and superbly edited making for an easy read in every case.
An eclectic mix... something for everyone. One story might fill a reader's need better than maybe the next one, but that is the great thing about an anthology, the stories are predictably unpredictable. They vary in topic and scope according to the whims, preferences and ideas of the authors on the day they were written.
Keep in mind, because they are 'short stories' and especially because they're of the sci-fi genre, the authors must start working towards the surprising ending almost from the get-go. Not a whole lot of time for character building or side plots. And with those thoughts in mind I can honestly state that there were many tales here that I really liked and one or two that kind of left me flat. Some endings I could predict but a couple were a total surprise... but that's about what I'd expect if I'd picked 16 short stories at random. Mission accomplished from my point of view.
A quality collection of sci-fi short stories at a very reasonable price.
As it is... 4 1/2 Stars.