Look! It’s already halfway through March. But even despite the bonus day, February turned out distinctly lighter in short fiction than January. I’m not going to beat myself up about it though – I spent the month packing my life into a dozen boxes, then moving to a flat with (still!) no internet access.
Because of this, and as I’m still tweaking and tuning the way I do these reviews, today’s favourites section is down to one:
Patterns of a Murmuration, in Billions of Data Points by JY Yang
The story of the first AI – and its parents. How love and grief looks when you’re brand new and the only one of your kind, and learning to how to be in a world filled with mainly the latter, but always a little of the former.
This month, I also read:
Maiden, Hunter, Beast by Kat Howard
The unicorn myth in New York City. This story digs into what it is to be a timeless legend, and to become one.
The Sincerity Game by Brit Mandelo
I wasn’t sure what to make of this story as I listened to it, but now as it sits with me, I like it more and more. An epigram I never thought I’d give a story: bleak but hot as hell.
When Your Child Strays From God by Sam J. Miller
I heard this story was good, but only half-consciously avoided it for a while – Christian homophobia tends to bring me down. If, like me, you’re wary of that kind of thing, fear not! More than anything else, this story is made out of love, and leaves you not with the lingering bad taste of god-bothering bigotry but buoyed by a feeling of hope.
Forestspirit, Forestspirit by Bogi Takács
Sufficiently advanced technology giving a bloody good impression of magic in this future fairy tale of occult tech and wishes granted.
Her Last Breath Before Waking by A. C. Wise
This intense, poetic story, I have to admit, kinda bounced right off me. It’s a slow heartbreak told in elegies and hymns to architecture; it’s a war story as a love story; it’s beautiful, and I could see that even as it sailed gloriously over my head. This story is difficult, but, I think, worth it.