Damien Broderick and Barbara Lamar. Walls of Flesh, Bars of Bone. (Engineering Infinity).

The only problem with Engineering Infinity so far is that it’s not as big a volume as I would like. I’m nearly finished!

Clever and classy, resonant with John Barnes’ ‘Things Undone’ which came out in 2009, but I read only the other week. There’s a great central character – a fairly (a very!) unsympathetic academic who has been thrown out by his wife, and has hit the bottle. Having pretty much queered his chance of tenure, a newsreel film clip from the 1930s lands on his desk, and it’s very, very disturbing. Either someone is extremely clever at video editing, or the anomalies in the clip are opening up a quantum pandora’s box.

Their story is written beautifully as well, with the closing stages shifting underneath the protagonist’s feet, as all is revealed. A shoo-in for a Year’s Best collection next year. I’d tip Dozois and Strahan himself to include this one in their respective volumes. And probably the first SF story I’ve read to reference ‘teabagging’ (note : if you don’t know what this is, probably best -not- to google it).

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