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 iveFingers Classic Smartwool 'Case Notes

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PostWysłany: Pon 17:35, 23 Maj 2011    Temat postu: iveFingers Classic Smartwool 'Case Notes

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Black Static Issue 10 Reviewed
Black Static Issue 9 by TTA Press
Black Static Issue 8 by TTA Press
Simon Avery's 'Bury The Carnival' opens the magazine in style with the longest story in the book; it has a fairytale feel (as in Grimm, rather than Disney), not just with it's mannequin protagonists but also a faux-Eastern European setting. But the sinister Precisemen -tools of the repressive Puritan government- give the story a contemporary twist, and the affecting protagonist and her lover invoke the reader's involvement. Highly recommended.
As good is 'Pale Saints and Dark Madonnas' by Jamie Barras, a stunning piece of Brazilian voodoo that starts with a bang and never lets up, and may be one of the best fantasies of the year. It's fast pace is in stark contrast to 'Action Undream' which follows,Five Fingers Bikila Ls Alternatives to a Payday Ca, and is a dream vs reality story that at times threatens to run away from its author, but which he just about gets back under control.
The fiction in Black Static is as unsettling as it was before the hiatus; it is Dark Fantasy in it's most literal sense and often so firmly grounded in reality as to be more Literary than Genre.
The truly eye-opening revelation is Mike O'Driscoll's 'Night's Plutonian Shore', transferred from Interzone. Nowadays the British media are less interested in reporting news than in shaping it to their own agendas, and O'Driscoll recounts the near-outrage with which the British press greeted the decision of the Portuguese police to pursue the case according to local law rather than British custom; "At best, many of us will have wised up, or had confirmed our suspicions about the extent to which the news media will cannibalise itself in order to fill the void left by the haunting unknown." He concludes with "the story has become the fantasy which elides the fate of a little girl and the despair of her family. All this in a week in which a British Parliamentary Committee warned that relentless news coverage -- amongst other things -- is eroding childhood in a wave of anxiety.
This is strong and unexpected stuff,[link widoczny dla zalogowanych], and worth the price of the magazine on its there is so much more in this inaugural issue of Black Static. It's been a long time coming, but it was worth the wait.
But if the fiction is good, the columns are excellent. With tighter editing (one paragraph on p49 contains just one sentence -- of over ninety words) Pete Tennant's 'Case Notes' will become amongst the must-reads of the canon. John Paul Catton shines a light on Japanese culture, Stephen Volk has pertinent things to say about the pernicious spread of wholesomeness amongst film-makers, and Christopher Fowler and Tony Lee also contribute columns.
Finally,[link widoczny dla zalogowanych], Tim Casson's 'Lady of the Crows' brings a theatre manager face to face with his former lover, now a nationally acclaimed actress, in a gripping re-enactment of the play they both acted in as students; unusually it ends with a sense of hope, and is a wonderful end to a great set of stories.
M. K. Hobson provides the enigmatic 'Votary,' which covers similar territory to George R.R. Martin's classic 'The Pear-Shaped Man,' but extends it to encompass family and relationships,[link widoczny dla zalogowanych], with unsettling and thought-provoking results.
'My Stone Desire' by Joel Lane is a thirty-year flashback narrated by a cop who specializes in missing persons reports. The reader can almost smell and taste the mildewed grime of 1970s West Midlands in a short, punchy piece.
The first issue of Black Static with its striking artwork has finally arrived in subscriber's mailboxes, a full two years after it's precursor The Third Alternative.

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