Goodreads Review for Fix the World
(Reviewers note: I was given an advance copy of this book in return for an honest review)
A wonderful collection of speculative fiction. Most stories are set in a world after the climate change apocalypse, but all have a thread of hope running through them. Most definitely, stories to read more than once.
In Light by Mere Rain: 5 stars
The colony on Herschel 93 has been experiencing problems with their solar trees and the Sunwall which protects them during wind season. The author had my attention from the beginning with this wonderful sentence…‘The angel stepped forward and said, “We’re from the government and
we’re here to help.”’ A lovely story to open the anthology.
Juma and the Quantum Ghost by Ingrid Garcia: 3.5 stars
A dramatic story of kidnap and rescue set in Zambia, but of course it’s more complicated than that once you involve a biological quantum computer! The plot alternates between what happens in the present (written in present tense) with flashbacks to the past, which was striking but I also found it somewhat distracting from the plot.
Ice in D Minor by Anthea Sharp: 4.5 stars
Can music change the world? An orchestra prepares to play at the North Pole, which is
still cold, though the countries around the Earth’s centre are too hot to live in. However, the concert is not simply to entertain an audience but a desperate attempt to feed the climate engine and cool the atmosphere. Some beautiful images in this one.
At the Movies by D.M. Rasch: 5 stars
Reilly plans a trip to the retro “movies”, without using tech implants to enhance the experience but with snacks that fool your receptors into tasting salt and sugar. What should have been a fun first date with Lainey and her family, turns into a nightmare when a terrorist takes over the theatre…A suspenseful read!
Who Shall Reap the Grain of Heaven? by J.G. Follansbee: 3 stars
Set in the near future, Abbott James Bohm grapples between sticking to a project which he hopes will tackle climate change and obeying a directive from the Pope himself. I found it a little difficult to engage with this story.
From the Sun and Scorched Earth by Bryan Cebulski: 5 stars
What happens when the war is over? Leo, one of the destroyers, comes to a village to ask for punishment and instead is asked to atone by helping the community. A lovely change from the usual survivalist kill or be killed mentality in many post-apocalyptic stories.
Upgrade by Alex Silver: 4 stars
The nanite revolution. A world where everyone has access to enough food and universal health care as long as they are on the grid. But in every utopia there is always someone who wants to buck the system. Klein loves the adrenaline rush of life on the edge, surfing the greyweb. But when he gets sucked into a prank challenge which turns deadly, he has to make some serious choices. As one of the two the longest stories in the anthology, and the most explicit, Upgrade is a meaty read!
Rise by J. Scott Coastworth: 4 stars
Italy works to resurrect one of the wonders of the civilised world, to provide a symbol of hope for climate disaster survivors. As soon as I read ‘lagoon’ I had my suspicions… A charming story.
A Forest for the Trees by Rachel Hope Crossman: 4 stars
Perhaps the most fantastical of the stories here. Told from the perspective of Dave, a giant Redwood, we learn the story of the war between humans and trees, and how one day, Dave and a few fellow trees uprooted themselves and made a run for it. Do I need to say more?
As Njord And Skadi by Jennifer R. Povey: 5 stars
Deborah and Steffi are married, but they have very different lives and aspirations.
Deborah loves mules and the mountains, and Steffi loves dolphins and the sea. Up until now their marriage has worked but now the cracks are becoming too obvious to ignore. Set in a post climate-disaster world, this is a beautiful story about trying to fix what’s broken.
The Call of the Wold by Holly Schofield: 4 stars
Another post climate-disaster tale. For the last twelve years, Julie has been on the run from her corporate responsibilities, enjoying the freedom of riding around Western Canada on her bicycle, occasionally stopping at one of the many hands-on farming collectives which have sprung up. She arrives at Henkel’s Wold, and stays to settle a dispute, ready to move on again after a few days. However, since she turned seventy last year, perhaps it’s time to reconsider. Could this be her new home?
Homestead at the Beginning of the World by Jana Denardo: 5 stars
The only story in the anthology involving aliens. The Derjviks have now left Earth, after a hundred years of occupation, destruction and biological experimentation, and life is slowly recovering.
Sam, an Ojibwe man, lives contentedly, more or less in the wilderness in what used to be north Wisconsin. The algae he farms on the lakes, goes to the nearby laboratory to be turned into biofuel.
One day Kjell Eriksen arrives to work at the lab. A result of one of the Derjvik’s experiments, Kjell has green skin from an attempt to blend chlorophyl into human DNA and is still grappling with PTSD.
A love story, written with sensitivity and hope.