RogerBW's Blog

Apex 120, May 2019 18 June 2019

Apex was a monthly on-line magazine edited by Jason Sizemore among others.

Everything is available in HTML from the magazine's site, and it can be bought in various other formats.

Our Audacity by Maurice Broaddus, guest editor, says that this is not just the Afrofuturism issue but the identity issue.

Words from the Editor-in-Chief by Jason Sizemore confirms that this is the last issue; it's just being too much work, so he and his organisation are concentrating on the book-publishing side of the job. Fair enough.

A nod of appreciation to the previous editor-in-chiefs

…ah, so that explains why the quality of English in this magazine has so often been terrible.

Dune Song by Suyi Davies Okungbawa is about getting away; the details and plot, while atmospheric, aren't as important as the emotions. It's not the sort of thing I usually enjoy, but I really liked it.

Fugue State by Steven Barnes & Tananarive Due has a journalist whose husband is going mad… or is it something more subtle than that? But it's utterly linear: something bad is happening, and it happens, and there's no exploration of why or how it works or how it could be stopped or… eh. I suppose that might be the point, that this could have been the setup for a story about the journalist who saves the world but this is a horror story, not an SF story, so this time she's just as vulnerable as everyone else; but it goes nowhere, like the bit at the beginning of the horror story in which innocents get eaten by the monster before the heroes show up to start the real narrative.

N-Coin by Tobias S. Buckell shows that obvious scam is obvious. Buckell clearly doesn't understand how real-world cryptocurrencies work, but he's happy to posit a conspiracy of "every black person in America" [sic]. The editors of Apex don't seem to think that that's a problem.

Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Memphis Minnie Sing the Stumps Down Good by LaShawn M. Wanak has a lethal fungal growth that can be killed by singing… but not too much singing. Doesn't completely hold together for me but it fits its setting very well and the characters work.

When We Dream We Are Our Own God by Wole Talabi is the account of someone who's just joined an electronically-mediated group mind… and why, and why it exists, and what it's going to do next. It's short and very fine.

Pimp My Airship (novel excerpt) by Maurice Broaddus features the guest editor's own work, which feels sloppy. It's not yet freely available at the time of posting.

Let’s Talk About Afrofuturism by Troy L. Wiggins tells us that some people are doing Afrofuturism wrong, and they shouldn't be excluding each other. Profoundly depressing.

Interview with Author Steven Barnes by Andrea Johnson seems odd for not interviewing both the authors (they're also married to each other, so it shouldn't have been logistically difficult). Moderately interesting but doesn't say anything unexpected.

I'll probably nominate the Okungbawa and the Talabi.

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Previous in series: Apex 119, April 2019 | Series: Apex

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