Sci-Fi, Fantasy & Horror Reviews
Book Review: Pump Six
By Sandy Amazeen Dec 18, 2010, 22:45 GMT
Becigalupi’s outstanding debut collection of ten short stories explores the darker side of progress and humanity’s future with inventive, thought provoking twists that exemplify quality science fiction. The title story “Pump Six” tells of a future when society relies on old technologies to continue functioning but no one is capable of maintaining or understanding the most basic machinery. Worse, humanity appears to be de-evolving as society’s infrastructure crumbles around their ears. Perhaps the most haunting of the collection is “The People of Sand and Slag” that portrays a future earth so polluted that humanity has been engineered to survive by living off contaminates. A real live dog is discovered by three coworkers who are faced with trying to keep it alive in a world where such creatures no longer exist outside of a handful of facilities. What they eventually decide to do with the luckless canine tells of humanity’s future mentality and it isn’t pretty. “The Fluted Girl” reveals a future where surgical procedures, drug therapies and genetic engineering can create a fragile shell of a girl incapable of doing most things regular people that for granted but beneath that delicate exterior beats a heart yearning for revenge.
These deep, cautionary tales will stay with readers long after the last page is turned. Each one is original and several seem to show hints of Ray Bradbury’s influence yet are clearly in a class of their own. Do not miss out on this stellar compellation that will leave you searching for more work by this author.