E. Catherine Tobler. Chasmata. (Interzone #253, Jul-Aug 2014)

interzone253An effective psychological piece. Not a standard narrative, just the thoughts of a Martian settler, standing by Valles Marineris, the massive chasm on the Red Planet.

The chasm, the dryness, the dust, the distance from Earth all impinge on the narrator’s thought processes (with a many a parenthical aside) with the cupping of a hand around another, and other basic human feelings and senses explored, looking back on, and sideways to things which did/not happen and which are/not happening now. Not a ‘fast-paced action adventure’ story!

And a word about page layout which has a red illustration of chasm walls hemming in the text. That word is excellent.

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