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The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August, 2015 (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, #720)

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CONTENT: Novella "Johnny Rev"by Rachel Pollack Novelets "The Deepwater Bride" by Tamsyn Muir "The Body Pirate" by Van Arron Hughes "The Curse of Myrmelon" by Matthew Hughes Short Stories "Dixon's Road" by Richard Chwedyk "Oneness: A Triptych" by James Patrick Kelly "This Quintessence of Dust" by Oliver Buckram "Paradise and Trout" by Betsy James "The Silicon Curtain: A Seastead Story" CONTENT: Novella "Johnny Rev"by Rachel Pollack Novelets "The Deepwater Bride" by Tamsyn Muir "The Body Pirate" by Van Arron Hughes "The Curse of Myrmelon" by Matthew Hughes Short Stories "Dixon's Road" by Richard Chwedyk "Oneness: A Triptych" by James Patrick Kelly "This Quintessence of Dust" by Oliver Buckram "Paradise and Trout" by Betsy James "The Silicon Curtain: A Seastead Story" by Naomi Kritzer "Into the Fiery Planet" by Gregor Hartmann


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CONTENT: Novella "Johnny Rev"by Rachel Pollack Novelets "The Deepwater Bride" by Tamsyn Muir "The Body Pirate" by Van Arron Hughes "The Curse of Myrmelon" by Matthew Hughes Short Stories "Dixon's Road" by Richard Chwedyk "Oneness: A Triptych" by James Patrick Kelly "This Quintessence of Dust" by Oliver Buckram "Paradise and Trout" by Betsy James "The Silicon Curtain: A Seastead Story" CONTENT: Novella "Johnny Rev"by Rachel Pollack Novelets "The Deepwater Bride" by Tamsyn Muir "The Body Pirate" by Van Arron Hughes "The Curse of Myrmelon" by Matthew Hughes Short Stories "Dixon's Road" by Richard Chwedyk "Oneness: A Triptych" by James Patrick Kelly "This Quintessence of Dust" by Oliver Buckram "Paradise and Trout" by Betsy James "The Silicon Curtain: A Seastead Story" by Naomi Kritzer "Into the Fiery Planet" by Gregor Hartmann

30 review for The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August, 2015 (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, #720)

  1. 4 out of 5

    elaine

    wrt to the deepwater bride by tamsyn muir: "listen," i said. "the drowned lord who dwells in dark water will claim you. the moon won't rise tonight, and you'll never update your tumblr again." is the best line i've ever read in my entire LIFE wrt to the deepwater bride by tamsyn muir: "listen," i said. "the drowned lord who dwells in dark water will claim you. the moon won't rise tonight, and you'll never update your tumblr again." is the best line i've ever read in my entire LIFE

  2. 5 out of 5

    Robyn

    i read this back in november and i’m v glad someone finally put it on goodreads because it was really throwing off my reading challenge smh. anyway i would literally read tamsyn muir‘s grocery lists at this point but these short stories genuinely were all fantastic (particularly the titular one imo) - the way she merges fantasy and romance and horror with the incredibly sharp wit that tends to characterise her writing feels so fresh and clever to me, i simply have No Choice But To Stan

  3. 5 out of 5

    John Loyd

    July/August 2015 Fantasy & Science Fiction. Outstanding, several high quality stories. 8 • The Deepwater Bride • 24 pages by Tamsyn Muir Very Good/Excellent. Started slow, but once Hester met Rainbow the story took off. Hester is a seer, and the ominous things happening around town are due to some creature looking for it's bride. 32 • Dixon's Road • 20 pages by Richard Chwedyk Very Good/Good. The curator/tour guide of a poet's home, spots a man at the entrance well before the usual opening time. S July/August 2015 Fantasy & Science Fiction. Outstanding, several high quality stories. 8 • The Deepwater Bride • 24 pages by Tamsyn Muir Very Good/Excellent. Started slow, but once Hester met Rainbow the story took off. Hester is a seer, and the ominous things happening around town are due to some creature looking for it's bride. 32 • Dixon's Road • 20 pages by Richard Chwedyk Very Good/Good. The curator/tour guide of a poet's home, spots a man at the entrance well before the usual opening time. She let's him in early, and starts giving him a tour, only to realize he is the poet's husband gone and come back. 52 • Oneness: a Triptych • 5 pages by James Patrick Kelly So-so. A new vocabulary word for me. In this case the triptych is not three paintings hinged together, instead three stories. All depicting oneness. 75 • Johnny Rev • 61 pages by Rachel Pollack Very Good/Excellent. Jack Shade is a traveler, meaning he can he see the real world and the other world(s). There are flashbacks. One telling how Jack lost his family and created a duplicate to give the news to his mother-in-law. Another detailing his relationship with El, and one more explaining his Guest--that whenever someone hands him his business card he has to take the case. His duplicate, a revenant, hence Johnny Rev, comes to Jack in a dream with his card and gives him an assignment. Really well done. 136 • This Quintessence of Dust • 6 pages by Oliver Buckram Good. The story of how Judy42 and other robots are coping with a problem. 142 • The Body Pirate • 24 pages by Van Aaron Hughes Very Good. It took a few pages to figure out the pronouns. A being consists of one (or more) humanoid bodies and a "soul" which is described as a black bird. The soul directs what is done, but the bodies can function by themselves. 168 • Paradise and Trout • 8 pages by Betsy James OK. A recently deceased boy has to make his way past the demons to get to paradise. 198 • The Curse of the Myrmelon • 25 pages by Matthew Hughes Very Good. Cascor is presented with a mystery, a warehouse clerk/bookkeeper notices discrepancies in the inventory and it bothers bothers his sense of perfection. He hires Raffalon to plant a spy device in the warehouse. 223 • The Silicon Curtain: a Seastead Story • 19 pages by Naomi Kritzer Excellent/VG. Not quite as awesome as the previous two Seastead/Beck Garrison stories. Beck's friend asks her for help getting some data from Sal. Sal is locked down, but maybe being Paul Garrison's daughter will help. 242 • Into the Fiery Planet • 14 pages by Gregor Hartman Good/VG. Tensen has four paxoforming projects underway but may have to abandon two or three of them. The PR people on Zephyr want to do what they can to keep support coming. Good characters and some humor thrown in that worked. 193 • Plumage from Pegasus • 5 pages by Paul Di Filippo Very Good. Because this is listed in the "departments" rather than as a story that it's a review column or something, and I've for the most part been skipping it. The other one I read I thought had something to do with electronic vs. paper books, but didn't really take a stand. Anyway, "Bable in reverse is Lebab" is a 5 page story, definitely a story, then right at the end, ZING.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Esther

    For some reason, this particular edition struck me as dark and gritty, and a lot of the material didn't really work for me, which was disappointing. My favourites were probably "The Deepwater Bride" {which was dark but I enjoyed it nonetheless} and Dixon's Road, which was quite poignant. There was one story that had formatting that didn't work and I couldn't read it on my Kindle: "The Body Pirate" by Van Aaron Hughes. [I received a PDF version, where I was able to read it. A challenging read but For some reason, this particular edition struck me as dark and gritty, and a lot of the material didn't really work for me, which was disappointing. My favourites were probably "The Deepwater Bride" {which was dark but I enjoyed it nonetheless} and Dixon's Road, which was quite poignant. There was one story that had formatting that didn't work and I couldn't read it on my Kindle: "The Body Pirate" by Van Aaron Hughes. [I received a PDF version, where I was able to read it. A challenging read but worth it for how it combines theme, structure & plot] Not my Cup of Tea "Oneness: a Triptych" by James Patrick Kelly - Very graphic and, for me, offensive. "Paradise and Trout" by Betsy James - I found it a bit trite and preachy. Fine, but didn't talk to me "Johnny Rev" by Rachel Pollack - This series of stories has never worked for me. "The Curse of the Myrmelon" by Matthew Hughes - Initially intriguing and fun, but I lost interest in the mystery half-way. "Into the Fiery Planet" by Gregor Hartmann Enjoyable, may be worth a re-read "The Deepwater Bride" by Tamsyn Muir "Dixon's Road" by Richard Chwedyk "The Quintessence of Dust" by Oliver Buckram "The Silicon Curtain: A Seastead Story" by Naomi Kritzer - Always enjoyed this series "The Body Pirate" by Van Aaron Hughes Perfect for me

  5. 4 out of 5

    scriblitula

    Very well done urban fantasy, horror and luuuuv in different settings. As usual with short stories, I liked some more than others, but I'm always here for lesbian sea monsters. Very well done urban fantasy, horror and luuuuv in different settings. As usual with short stories, I liked some more than others, but I'm always here for lesbian sea monsters.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Odo

    3.5/5.0

  7. 4 out of 5

    Clare

    A few years ago a friend gave me a copy of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August, 2015 with the thought that the first story, by a new-ish author, seemed like the sort of thing I would like. As frequently happens with this sort of thing, I intended to check it out in a timely manner, but the magazine soon got subsumed into the rest of my enormous TBR pile. More recently, when I was Marie Kondo-ing said enormous TBR pile because what even is in there, I was somewhat surprised t A few years ago a friend gave me a copy of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August, 2015 with the thought that the first story, by a new-ish author, seemed like the sort of thing I would like. As frequently happens with this sort of thing, I intended to check it out in a timely manner, but the magazine soon got subsumed into the rest of my enormous TBR pile. More recently, when I was Marie Kondo-ing said enormous TBR pile because what even is in there, I was somewhat surprised to pick up the magazine and see the name “ Tamsyn Muir” on the cover, because oh shit, I know who that is now! And her stuff is exactly the sort of thing I like! So I sat down and read “The Deepwater Bride” and then put the magazine back in the TBR pile to finish later. “Later” ended up mostly being “in the bath, recovering from the DSA convention” which it turns out is an excellent place to reread “The Deepwater Bride,” which is a very wet story involving sulphuric rains and mutant fish and dead sharks and that sort of thing. It excellently shows off Muir’s Monty Python-esque mastery of mixed-register humor and is somehow, oddly, very sweet. The other stories in the magazine are also quite good — I don’t think there was a one of them I disliked, although some of them were more engaging than others — and there were a few other author names I recognized. The central story of the magazine was the novella Johnny Rev by Rachael Pollack, which I got more into than I expected given its “man is tormented by the gruesome loss of his wife and daughter” element. The only bits of the magazine that truly fell flat for me were some of the nonfiction pieces, which is probably unsurprising as they are six years out of date. I’m not sure if I want to hang on to the whole magazine just to keep a hold of “The Deepwater Bride” for, Idunno, reading out loud to myself when I’m bored and want things that are fun to say, but since I can’t decide I will probably keep it for now. Originally posted at Dread anglerfish and other miscellany.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    A Google search for the "Deepwater Bride and other stories" (which I'm actually not exactly sure exists as an official publication) redirects here, so I'm rating this. A good short story collection, with very good atmospheric writing and Muir's trademark humour. A Google search for the "Deepwater Bride and other stories" (which I'm actually not exactly sure exists as an official publication) redirects here, so I'm rating this. A good short story collection, with very good atmospheric writing and Muir's trademark humour.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Alex

    **This is only a review of Tamsyn Muir's The Deepwater Bride** I loved this short story! Muir's writing is in equal parts weird, funny, and beautiful. **This is only a review of Tamsyn Muir's The Deepwater Bride** I loved this short story! Muir's writing is in equal parts weird, funny, and beautiful.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    I've only read Johnny Rev and (the reason I looked for this issue in the first place:) Tamsyn Muir's The Deepwater Bride. Johnny Rev was fine but fairly unmemorable for me. Deepwater Bride was an interesting twist on the whole premonitions and Lovecraftian horrors-type story. I've only read Johnny Rev and (the reason I looked for this issue in the first place:) Tamsyn Muir's The Deepwater Bride. Johnny Rev was fine but fairly unmemorable for me. Deepwater Bride was an interesting twist on the whole premonitions and Lovecraftian horrors-type story.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Wampuscat

    Individual Story reviews below: (Average 3 stars) Novella Johnny Rev by Rachel Pollack (3 stars) In a world, our world, where magic is ever-present and hidden in plain sight from those who aren't supposed to see it, one man faces a terrible circumstance. But not really. He faces it with a copy of himself, but somehow, the copy just doesn't want to go away after its task is done. I liked this story. The plot was good, the characters were cleanly developed with good detail. The story Individual Story reviews below: (Average 3 stars) Novella Johnny Rev by Rachel Pollack (3 stars) In a world, our world, where magic is ever-present and hidden in plain sight from those who aren't supposed to see it, one man faces a terrible circumstance. But not really. He faces it with a copy of himself, but somehow, the copy just doesn't want to go away after its task is done. I liked this story. The plot was good, the characters were cleanly developed with good detail. The story was fast paced and kept me in it the whole time. There was a whole lot of backstory hinted at, and almost too much info about the world mentioned but glossed over. I actually went looking to see if this was a continuing story line, but didn't find anything. I did find that the author is unsurprisingly into tarot and spirituality. The story is quite filled with that sort of thing, but I took it for what it was... an entertaining story. Novelets The Deepwater Bride by Tamsyn Muir (3 stars) An eldritch horror short story. It was well written, but not quite as creepy as some. I think that was because the main focus was message... (i.e. the budding romance between the two female main characters). I'll leave it there. The Body Pirate by Van Arron Hughes (2.5 stars) Very confusing until you figure out what is happening between the blackbirds/humans and all the pronounification (see, i can invent words too!) Written in an interesting way (split screen text) in places. Kudos for trying something new, but it was not great. No character depth. The Curse of Myrmelon by Matthew Hughes (3.5 stars) A private detective with some knowledge of magic (which he is not supposed to use because it pisses of the Magician's Union) takes on an investigation that leads to a much deeper intrigue. This story was very well written, the characters were well developed and I was pulled into the world and held there. This is not my typical genre, so it has to work hard to interest me to begin with. When it does, it gets high marks. Short Stories DIXON'S ROAD by Richard Chwedyk (4 stars) I really liked this one. It's a story about a the curator of a museum - the home site of a famous female poet on a terra-formed asteroid - that gives a very special tour to a very special person. I won't say more because it would spoil it. I found it poignant, with great character & world development in a short package. I highly recommend this one. Oneness: A Triptych by James Patrick Kelly (0 stars) Cyberporn? Nothing about the world was explained. It was bad. This Quintessence of Dust by Oliver Buckram (4 stars) A neat little story of the robotic survivors of the human bio-apocalypse. Short and very good. Paradise and Trout by Betsy James (2 stars) A young boy's journey into the afterlife. It has vivid imagery, but the story left me feeling that it was incomplete. It seems to be written for emotion rather than story, which would be fine if it had a bit more story to round it out. The Silicon Curtain: A Seastead Story by Naomi Kritzer (5 stars) A sixteen year old girl in the Seastead is preparing to move back to California to live with her mom after her father death, but one last thing needs doing first. A YA adventure that draws you in. I think I may be hooked me on this series now. It has a well crafted world, good character into, and that bit of intrigue I tend to like a lot. Into the Fiery Planet by Gregor Hartmann (3 stars) How do you sell a cinder as a vacation spot? Use your words, of course. It's all in the presentation. A somewhat humorous look at intergalactic tourism.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Amber

    I read the whole story in about 20 minutes (granted it’s a short story, but still) and it was so good!!! Magic, mystery, and queer girls? Yes please!!!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Maya

    I love her writing so much.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Ariel Fiona

    I've only read The Deepwater Bride, but it filled my heart with joy. It's what Cthulhu could have been if only HP Lovecraft had a sense of humor and were a lesbian instead of a racist. I've only read The Deepwater Bride, but it filled my heart with joy. It's what Cthulhu could have been if only HP Lovecraft had a sense of humor and were a lesbian instead of a racist.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kenny V

    Okay now I finished the last issue of F&SF. Two notable authors on the cover were Matthew Hughes and Rachel Pollack, both with serial publications that I've really enjoyed. Matthew Hughes writes stories surrounding an irrascible thief named Raffalon centered in a fun world filled with neer do wells of all sorts, a bit of magic, and a lot of hijinks and general cheekiness. It has become one of my most looked for stories and I'm generally quite excited when another adventure is published. Much to m Okay now I finished the last issue of F&SF. Two notable authors on the cover were Matthew Hughes and Rachel Pollack, both with serial publications that I've really enjoyed. Matthew Hughes writes stories surrounding an irrascible thief named Raffalon centered in a fun world filled with neer do wells of all sorts, a bit of magic, and a lot of hijinks and general cheekiness. It has become one of my most looked for stories and I'm generally quite excited when another adventure is published. Much to my delight this story focused around the character Cascor, a thief catcher who lost his position due to Raffalon's cleverness that ended up dabbling in the magical arts and now does occasional work with Raffalon. I had actually suggested to the author previously through a letter that he write more about the character so I was looking forward to it. Unfortunately the story was a bit of a let down. It had a good idea and a bit of intrigue to it but the execution felt really flat. Rather than a light fun adventure it felt more like "Cascor did this, and then this person said this, and then they went and did that, etc..." Can't win em all I guess though. By contrast Rachel Pollack's story, [i]Johnny Rev[/i], following her Jack Shade character was fantastic. It was a longish novella (> 60 pages) but it was well worth it. The story was about a "duplicate" that Jack had made of himself much earlier that had reformed itself and was attempting to take over as the true Jack Shade. There was a lot of back story and I felt like the novella added a great deal of depth to the world that Jack lives in. The twists and conclusion weren't entirely foreseeable which was a good thing and I thought it also set up for some potential future episodes as well. Overall a great read that brought the issue from "good" to "great" for me.

  16. 5 out of 5

    George Heintzelman

    An excellent issue. No duds, and several standouts: "Dixon's Road", by Richard Chwedyk. This is a beautiful, lyrical story about love and loss and sacrifice. After I read it, I went to see if it had gotten any award recognition, then realized that this was the Hugo "No Award" year so it didn't and I was sad. It was deserving, in my view. It even contains a really beautiful piece of poetry, written as part of the story (written by one of the characters) but just lovely on its own merits. "The Bod An excellent issue. No duds, and several standouts: "Dixon's Road", by Richard Chwedyk. This is a beautiful, lyrical story about love and loss and sacrifice. After I read it, I went to see if it had gotten any award recognition, then realized that this was the Hugo "No Award" year so it didn't and I was sad. It was deserving, in my view. It even contains a really beautiful piece of poetry, written as part of the story (written by one of the characters) but just lovely on its own merits. "The Body Pirate", by Van Aaron Hughes, is a fascinating exploration of the nature of humanity and consciousness, through the lens of a world where humans are the hosts. "The Silicon Curtain: A Seastead Story", by Naomi Kritzer, continues the saga of Rebecca Garrison. Perhaps not quite as good as the previous entries in this series, but still very enjoyable. And Tamsyn Muir's "The Deepwater Bride" won a Nebula; I liked it quite a bit, though I wouldn't have given it honors ahead of its companion in this volume, "Dixon's Road".

  17. 4 out of 5

    Frankie

    There's always something to love in any issue of F&SF. The two gems in this issue for me were Naomi Kritzer with another story in her Seastead universe, and "The Deepwater Bride" by Tamsyn Muir. Kritzer's protagonist Beck Garrison has had me enthralled from the first, and Muir ... there are plenty of writers that when I've finished something of theirs for the first time I think "that was cool, I'll have to look out for more by ___." Muir, like Kritzer, like M. John Harrison, Elizabeth Hand, Kell There's always something to love in any issue of F&SF. The two gems in this issue for me were Naomi Kritzer with another story in her Seastead universe, and "The Deepwater Bride" by Tamsyn Muir. Kritzer's protagonist Beck Garrison has had me enthralled from the first, and Muir ... there are plenty of writers that when I've finished something of theirs for the first time I think "that was cool, I'll have to look out for more by ___." Muir, like Kritzer, like M. John Harrison, Elizabeth Hand, Kelly Link, Ysabeau Wilce, Christopher Fowler, Nalo Hopkinson, and Iain Banks (to name just a few) is one that once introduced, I obsess on getting a list together of everything published because I can't bear to think I've missed a thing. C.C. Finlay, your editorship is maintaining the high standard of the 60+ years behind the magazine, and I'm loving your selection!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Emmett Hoops

    This issue was very good in parts and very poor and others. The main story, Johnny Rev by Rachel Pollack, was excellent. Johnny Rev is a story that reintroduces us to Jack Shade, who is becoming one of my favorite speculative fiction characters. Another strong story is the Deepwater Bride which leads off the collection. It is a little bit Lovecraftian and quite well done. The other stories are strictly... other stories. I don't think there is one that stands out in my mind. This issue was very good in parts and very poor and others. The main story, Johnny Rev by Rachel Pollack, was excellent. Johnny Rev is a story that reintroduces us to Jack Shade, who is becoming one of my favorite speculative fiction characters. Another strong story is the Deepwater Bride which leads off the collection. It is a little bit Lovecraftian and quite well done. The other stories are strictly... other stories. I don't think there is one that stands out in my mind.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Lanko

    I've only read Johnny Rev by Rachel Pollack, through the Best SFF Novellas of 2016 anthology, and it's another novella that only appeared in a magazine and doesn't have its own cover. Very weird and fantastical, like a mix of Gaiman's American Gods and China Miélville in present day New York. I've only read Johnny Rev by Rachel Pollack, through the Best SFF Novellas of 2016 anthology, and it's another novella that only appeared in a magazine and doesn't have its own cover. Very weird and fantastical, like a mix of Gaiman's American Gods and China Miélville in present day New York.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    "Johnny Rev," by Rachel Pollack. 4.5 stars. Novella. "The Deepwater Bride," by Tamsin Muir. 4.5 stars. Novelette "Johnny Rev," by Rachel Pollack. 4.5 stars. Novella. "The Deepwater Bride," by Tamsin Muir. 4.5 stars. Novelette

  21. 5 out of 5

    Samuel Lubell

    I seem to remember liking this issue. It featured another Kritzer Seastead story.

  22. 5 out of 5

    milo in the woods

    some good shit, review for tamsyn muir’s “the deepwater bride”

  23. 5 out of 5

    Matthew

    My favorite stories were "Johnny Rev" by Rachel Pollack, "Paradise and Trout" by Betsy James, and "The Body Pirate" by Van Aaron Hughes. My favorite stories were "Johnny Rev" by Rachel Pollack, "Paradise and Trout" by Betsy James, and "The Body Pirate" by Van Aaron Hughes.

  24. 4 out of 5

    marlowe. (cryptidcasanova)

    *to specify, I’ve read the original publishing of The Deepwater Bride novella - though I do hope this means there will be a physical collection of TazMuir shorts to come in the future!*

  25. 4 out of 5

    Meran

    Review later.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Erinn Di Staulo

  27. 5 out of 5

    Meagan Thompson

  28. 4 out of 5

    Rose

  29. 4 out of 5

    Rachel (Kalanadi)

  30. 4 out of 5

    Dave Rankin

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