Analog Science Fiction and Fact, July/August 2009

Reviewed date: 2010 Jun 21
192 pages
cover art

This isn't a bad issue, but not terribly compelling either. I enjoyed The Bear Who Sang Opera, even if the ending was predictable. Failure to Obey had promise but got bogged down in the minutiae of the courtroom; it was agonizingly boring. Duck and Cover feels more like the introduction to a story than a story in itself. It's one of those stories where all the interesting stuff gets left to your imagination. All we're left with is a narrator who saw something weird he didn't understand, which may be an interstellar conspiracy to undermine the very fabric of humanity, or it could be nothing.

The science facts were OK but not great.

The serial, Turning the Grain, could turn out to be a great story. I hate time travel, true. But so far it's good. I'll know more when I read the conclusion in the next issue.

  • Serial (1 of 2): Turning the Grain, by Barry B. Longyear - Gordon Redcliff, sniper and bodyguard extraordinaire, finds himself stranded in the prehistoric past when a time travel expedition goes horribly wrong.
  • Novella: Seed of Revolution, by Daniel Hatch - On the planet Chamal, with indigenous intelligent life that takes all sorts of shapes, a human researcher is murdered, which sparks a native revolution on Chamal.
  • Novella: Failure to Obey, by John G. Hemry - A soldier in the heat of battle disobeys a direct order to fire on a target, because he believes the target is a friendly; he is exonerated at a general courts martial.
  • Novelette: The Bear Who Sang Opera, by Scott William Carter - A bear who lost his opera singing voice hires a private detective to find out who stole it.
  • Novelette: Payback, by Tom Ligon - After aliens try to destroy Earth with a ramjet weapon, Earth contemplates whether to launch a global effort to develop ramjet technology and return the favor.
  • Short story: Duck and Cover, by Don D'Ammassa - A soldier in Vietnam gets in trouble with a fellow soldier named Elmer Colby--and discovers that there are multiple Elmer Colbys in the army, with sequential Social Security numbers like they had rolled off an assembly line somewhere.
  • Short story: The Calculus Plague, by Marissa K. Lingen - Virus-born memories spread like a disease, and a university researcher unethically releases memories
  • Short-short: Global Warming, by Harry Turtledove - Global warming threatens the ice age standard of living, and the shamans know what is to blame: fire.
  • Science Fact: The Large Hadron Collider: A New Era, by Dr. Don Lincoln - A brief explanation of what the LHC is, what we might discover, and why we know it won't create a black hole that swallows up the planet.
  • Science Fact: Preserving the Memory, by Janet Feeman - Alzheimer's research has pinpointed a few features of the disease, but it's still hard to know which characteristics are the cause and which are an effect of Alzheimer's.
  • Special Feature: Musings from the First Generation, by Michael Carroll - Growing up during the Space Race.

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