Jason Sanford. What is Sand but Earth purified? (Asimovs October/November 2014)

asimovs141011Some nanotech has gone rogue, doing much more than clearing up the pollution around an atoll near Papua New Guinea. It is taking a much broader definition of what counts as pollution, as many humans have found out to their ultimate cost.

Some rich TV adventurers turn up, wanting Anchor, widowed recently by the nanotech, to be their guide. And as the three land on the atoll, sans any kind of tech..

An intriguing setup, and a story that gripped, with the only minor quibble being the regular use of the word ‘karst’ which is evidently “a landscape formed from the dissolution of soluble rocks including limestone, dolomite and gypsum”. Problem is, when I come across a word I don’t know, I have to look it up, and it just niggles each time I read it thereafter. But only minor quibblation.

I could see an average Hollywood blockbuster being made out of this, with lots of options for CGI

More from this issue here.

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