Saturday, April 18, 2009

New novelette: “Foe”, a tale of efficiency, by Mark Rich

"Foe", a new novelette by Mark Rich, appears in the April 2009 issue of Analog Science Fiction and Fact magazine. While I haven’t had a chance to read the story yet, I believe the plot is set in Dometown 26
on Mars and the main character is Jay Wirth, an efficiency expert. Here are the opening lines:

"Can't you just ship him out, if he's a bum?"

To judge from her look, my question was way off base. Could I whoosh the words back in through my lips?

Then Dena MacLaren made a dismissive hand motion and smiled.
She seemed an awkward sort -- tall and slender with short, straight, brown hair, and given to motions of a timid nature. Awkward folk easily forgive others their awkwardness. Plus I figured she might
be giving me a break because I, Jay Wirth, was a newcomer to Dometown 26, also named Neuhight, here in Bliss. ...

If you're not afraid of spoilers, check out detailed reviews of "Foe”
by Jim Steel of The Fix: Short Fiction Review and Lois Tilton of the Internet Review of Science Fiction, as well as brief reviews by Sam Tomaino of SFRevu, Wendy S. Delmater, and Stephanie Young. According to Young, Rich's novelette is “Heart warming, predictable, and fun to read.”

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