Dale Bailey. Lightning Jack’s Last Ride. (Fantasy & Science Fiction, Jan/Feb 2015)

fsf150102The narrator of the story is looking back on the life and death of Lightning Jack, and their relationship. We find out in the opening paragraphs about the video footage of the crash in which Lightning Jack was killed, as the narrator, who goes way back with Jack, hints that whilst the footage may be fake, he knows that Jack is dead.

It’s a near-future in which the USA has gone to hell, with the states anything but united, as civil insurgency, triggered by an NRA terrorist attach, and climate change has put the lid on Lightning Jack’s career as a top NASCAR driver. Gus had the chops back in those days to get himself into Jack’s team, and ended up being lead mechanic, and when Jack comes a-calling, post-NASCAR, with plans to make money out of driving, and out of the oil convoys, he is up for it, and before long they’re rustling oil tankers, and have blood on their hands.

It’s a nicely-told story, feeling just like it’s being taken down verbatim from Gus (with the exception of the of ‘atop’ twice in a couple of paragraphs – I’ve asked once or twice before : do people in the States routinely use ‘atop’ in spoken conversation? We don’t here in the UK and for some reason the word is atop my list of words that irk me!)

More from this issue here.

One thought on “Dale Bailey. Lightning Jack’s Last Ride. (Fantasy & Science Fiction, Jan/Feb 2015)

  • August 29, 2017 at 4:59 pm
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    I has a colloquial, dialect-ey feel. It seems to jibe with the Southern setting. According to the google graph, the usage is fairly modern.

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