The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, December 2008

Wayne Wightman. A Foreign Country.

Quentin A. Denmore is standing for President of the USA, an independent candidate, with a very weak platform (mostly shaking hands and being nice), and a very small team behind him. That team gets smaller to the point that they down on his luck journalist assigned to follow him on his campaign trail, finds himself the candidate’s right hand man.

Stranger still, Denmore is elected, despite what the exit polls were saying. It gets even stranger as the hands-off president appears to be having a major, albeit indirect, influence on the population at large.

Eugene Mirabelli. Falling Angel.

A young man’s solitary existence is shattered by an angel which falls, quite literally, from heaven. The angel is human save for the huge wings, and has very human needs and desires, the latter of which he is happy to satisfy.

Robert Reed. Leave.

First Contact a couple of steps removed, as we follow a man who best friend’s son is one who is chosen by, and chooses, to pay heed to the call to arms from an alien race. He and the young man’s father struggle to understand what motivates a young man to heed such a siren call. It is, of course, a strong story, well told, as the relationship between the friends, and the impact of the young man’s actions on them, is explored.

Warner Law. The Alarming Letters from Scotsdale.

All the way back from the April 1973 issue, by way of a celebration of F&SF’s 60th anniversary year. An author gets derailed from his successful novel series by a dog. A dog which appears to have a story to tell. There is of course a mystery in the tail.

Albert E. Cowdrey. A Skeptical Spirit.

Ghostly goings on in the deep South.

John Langan. How the Day Runs Down.

Zombie horror lurches in to the pages of F&SF as the story of the devastating impact of the brain eaters on a small community is told in an unusual theatrical setting.

Conclusion.

A nicely balanced issue of top quality writing.

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