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Interzone 221
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Author:  AndyHedge [ Thu Mar 12, 2009 8:32 pm ]
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Thanks for the image of Damien and Tracey the sulky teenagers, Foxie, that made me smile. Your're right about that need but (without wishing do do a Julie Myerson) I think my teenage son finds it hard to find soapboxes to climb on and banners to unfurl. It was so much easier in the '70s when three minutes of Bowie and Ronson singing Starman on TOTP induced instant outrage from the aged Ps. And I agree with the idea that the edgy, spiky stuff difts into the mainstream over team. But is there enough threatening stuff at the moment?

This idea of this very, very old stuff (based on mythic archetypes?) is interesting. I'm convinced there's some trutch in that - that's why traditional story forms are so robust, and pervasive (that's true of the stories in Interzone too, of course). Graham Joyce talks about the 'pulse' at the centre of all engaging stories - the lack of that is something he came to dislike about Gravity's Rainbow.

Have you ever read Alan Garner's collection of essays, speeches and freeform memoir, The Voice That Thunders? A few of the pieces in there are about tapping into the ancient sources you mention. He talks about a Polish friend of his who was part of the German retreat from Russia in WW2 (under very strange circumstances). He was an artist and as the Winter bit and conditions became grimmer, he was asked to produce explicitly pornographic drawings. As things became really desparate he was asked to draw nymphs, trolls, fairies... Garner's view is that the taste for these shared stories, these core myths becomes stronger as the human condition becomes more desperate. Let's hope we aren't able to test that idea any time soon!

Author:  Roy [ Fri Mar 13, 2009 11:57 pm ]
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And Bruce Sterling on the BBC technology news website.

Author:  Will McIntosh [ Sun Mar 15, 2009 2:47 am ]
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I just love the illustration that's accompanying my story! Cheers Interzone staff, and Mr. Fraser-Coombe!

Author:  Journeymouse [ Tue Mar 17, 2009 7:03 pm ]
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Arrived today in Doncaster area - and thankfully I got my grubby paws on it before the Hellhound did. The front page picture is just as great in person!

Author:  GLP [ Wed Mar 18, 2009 11:17 am ]
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Arrived in Bristol this morning.

Author:  Foxie [ Wed Mar 18, 2009 12:36 pm ]
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Arrived safe in Bethesda yesterday. Have to agree with everyone else--damn, that cover is pretty.

Looking forwards to reading it. Maybe I'll find one of my little gems in there... :)

Author:  richdodgin [ Thu Mar 19, 2009 8:20 pm ]
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Another excellent issue.

All great stories, but I especially enjoyed Saving Diego by Matthew Kressel, and A Clown Escapes From Circus Town by Will McIntosh.

Author:  StevenLP [ Mon Mar 23, 2009 10:00 am ]
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A good issue: the standout was "A Clown Escapes From Circus Town" by Will McIntosh, but "Home Again" by Paul M. Berger and "Black Swan" by Bruce Sterling were also good. The other three stories were enjoyable too.

Author:  Lawrence Conquest [ Wed Mar 25, 2009 5:08 pm ]
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Running a little late here, so I only just managed to read the issue last night. A good strong issue with no weak stories for this reader at least, though I'd have to nominate 'Saving Diego' as the best of the bunch.

More opinionated nonsense in a brief blog review here: http://lawrenceconquest.blogspot.com/2009/03/interzone-221-2009.html

Incidentally, I've only just noticed that on the website here there are full colour pictures of some of the black and white artwork in this issue - a pity that Interzone didn't manage to last in full-colour (though hardly suprising to be honest), but nice to see this art in all its glory here...

Author:  Andy [ Thu Mar 26, 2009 1:51 pm ]
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Review on Garbled Signals.

And another on Suite 101, which concludes with Colin Harvey saying that IZ221 is "yet another stunning issue -- each one seems to be better than the last."

If you haven't read your copy yet you might not want to follow these links!

Author:  mattbruensteiner [ Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:00 pm ]
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Andy wrote:
If you haven't read your copy yet you might not want to follow these links!


Absolutely. Kressel's and Sterling's stories are damn hard to review without breaking the story. I think all three of the reviews linked here have spoiled at least one of these stories.

Author:  Aliette de Bodard [ Fri Mar 27, 2009 8:09 am ]
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Another very good issue, the standout being "Saving Diego" for me as well.

Author:  Pete [ Sat Mar 28, 2009 9:37 am ]
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Tony Williams' comments here:-

http://sciencefictionfantasy.blogspot.c ... e-221.html

Author:  galaxie500 [ Sat Mar 28, 2009 12:53 pm ]
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This issue of Interzone is particulary interesting to me, because there are two stories here connected with my home country and that's not everyday occurence.
So, let me start with Fishermen, by Al Robertson.
This is a piece of pseudo-historical fiction (not SF or fantasy), set in a small town of Omis (20 kms from Split in Croatia where I live). Yes, Fenice is Venice, Polijica is Poljica, Sestina is Cetina (pronounced Omish, Polyitza, Shubich), and Corsairs of Omis are historical fact as their leader Subic is (his name was Juraj Subic, he lived in 14th century). Every summer in Omis there is a festival and the staged battle between Omis corsairs and their boats called sagittae (arrows in Latin) and Venice merchant ships.
Apart from the historical facts and that there are beautiful beaches around Omis, and that my wife worked there for almost ten years, and that Mr. Robertson has obviously been there, this is beautifully written story, although not SF or fantasy.
The other story partly concerning Croatia is Sterling's Black Swan, where they drink Croatian brandy (his novel Caryatids is also set partly in Croatia, on island of Mljet, probably the one of the most beautiful places on Earth, and the national park).
Black Swan is probably the best story in this issue, but I wouldn't agree that Barolo is the best wine in Europe (although it gets pretty close), French would probably have something to say here, and Croatian Dingac (from grape variety plavac mali from peninsula PeljeĊĦac, similar to Italian Primitivo or Zinfandel) is my bet (but that's probably local patriotism).
Will McIntosh's story is another excellent story of his, this one slightly reminding of Westworld movies, as someone stated before, but beautifully written.
Saving Diego is first story from Matthew Kressel I've read, and another well crafted story about drug addiction and friendship, not as much SF as slipstream (although there is space travel, aliens and some other SFnal elements, they are not the key elements of the story, it could've been set in Afganistan, or some other Muslim country with plenty of drugs).
Far and Deep by Alaya Dawn Johnson is yet another superb story, this time set in fantasy world of some kind of Micronesia, where moa birds still roam and magic is alive. Definitely very good story.
Last story is Berger's Home Again which is pretty short, with interesting, but predictable, twist in the end, but I would've liked it longer and with more "meat".
All in all very, very good issue.

Author:  Andy [ Wed Apr 01, 2009 8:46 am ]
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Sam Tomaino on SF Revu.

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