Reviews by Paulo Respighi

The Second Voice

by Mann Rubin

The U.S. Government is going to bounce a radio signal off of Mars, and scientists come to the conclusion that only the falsetto voice a ventriloquist uses for his dummy will work in their experiment.

A contrived, silly, story that is a little fascinating for its ineptness.

Reviewed on 2014.07.23

Dan Trex

by Michael E. Shea

The leader of a belligerent country wants to get his people in the mood for some slaughter, so he stages a show that allows him to demonstrate his own skills of violence.
For being as short as it is, the story develops a nice feel, but in the end it's hard to avoid saying, huh?

Reviewed on 2014.07.23

Colonel Chabert

by Honoré de Balzac

A legally dead hero of Napoleon's wars asks a Parisian lawyer to sue his re-married wife to regain his fortune. The lawyer comes to believe the man is who he says he is, and the legal wrangling begins. French law is almost as bizarre as American law (at least M. Chabert didn't have to worry about offending the religious feelings of a corporation). The story becomes less a legal argument than a struggle between extortion, trickery, kindness, and honor.
The story starts slowly with banter among clerks in a law office, and develops slowly, but the characters are excellent, and the ending is quietly sad.

Reviewed on 2014.07.18

The Short Life

by Francis Donovan

A poignant story of a little boy, born a congenital idiot, who suddenly begins talking at three years old and displays occasional signs of genius. The ending is a little talky, but shows great insight and compassion. The characters have depth and reality. It's kind of a Flowers for Algernon with aliens.
Highly recommended.

Reviewed on 2014.07.16

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