Archive for the ‘Nina Kiriki Hoffman’ Category
Folks, this is it. With this post I’ve let you know about all the original fiction Clarkesworld published during their fourth year. They just celebrated seven years, by the way. Pretty awesome, right?
This “go through their entire year” project was fun. You interested in me doing something like this again? I only did one year out of seven, but I feel like a bit of a completest anyway.
These final stories involve memory theft, magic candies, murderous whirlwinds, a vengeful astronaut, and a tragic military science fiction story. Let’s dive in!
Between Two Dragons, by Yoon Ha Lee – The nation of Cho has tried to stay neutral. On one side is the war like Yamat rattles it’s sabers, and makes plans to invade Feng-Huang, located on the far side of Cho. Avoiding violence from one side all but forces them to betray the other neighbor. And the famous Admiral Yen Shemar will remember none of it. Knowing the fate that awaits him after the war, he opts to face it on his own terms, and pays a visit to a woman who can erase his memories and in the process change his personality. This was the part of the story that struck me the hardest. The person being “re-written” doesn’t remember the procedure, doesn’t understand why their mother or child or sister looks at them funny afterwards because they no longer love their favorite foods, or claim to have never seen the film or read the book or poet that they used to always quote from. Your loved one becomes a stranger. At work recently, I overhear two people comparing their closed head injury recoveries. What they both agreed on was that the injury changed their personality. they could remember who they were before, but their personality changed afterwards. Is being “rewritten” a little like that, except you can’t remember who you were before? It was uncanny, to overhear that conversation shortly after reading this story. Between Two Dragons is a military science fiction story, but it doesn’t read like you’d expect a military scifi story to read. It reads like a list of fears, of regrets. It’s not told in chronological order either, as if the characters are writing down fleeting memories before they can be forcefully taken.