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First Contact Imminent Paperback – November 8, 2011
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A collection of light science fiction stories, fifteen authors give us their take on what that meeting might look like. The settings for each of the stories range from the mundane, a washer machine, to the extraordinary, an ice-blue world, and together they elicit wonder, disgust, and surprise - all in equal measure.
This is an adult anthology, but those of you squeamish need not worry. There is one story with some interesting alien sex, but nothing too garish and among them all, there is surprisingly little violence.
However, the majority do envision a meeting with aliens that generally doesn't go too well. I wonder what it is that makes the contact between two sentient beings inherently dangerous and negative to us. Why do we assume that the outcome would be bad (for one or the other or both)? I'm sure it has something to do with biology and resource niche, but for storytelling, I suppose it is a lot more interesting if things go awry as they do in many of these stories.
Though I found each story engaging, my favorites include The Astrozen Composer by Val Muller for its lyrical imagery; Dance, Zirillion, Dance by Dorothy Davies for its well aimed punch; and The Lonely Boy by J.S. Reinhardt for a grit that got under the skin. Overall, I found the reading enjoyable and would recommend this casual read.