Friday, May 10, 2013

Review of "Ichor" by Jess Hyslop

"Ichor" by Jess Hyslop appeared in Daily Science Fiction on May 9, 2013.  "A warden thirsts for the blood of an imprisoned angel that is used by priests in their religious rites." The editors note that the tale is not for the faint of heart--I agree.

Ms. Hyslop offers her story for the most part from the end to the beginning, leveraging this difficult device to build mystery and suspense.  The use of this device can often have the opposite effect, so Ms. Hyslop's generally successful use of it is worthy of note.  The device can also lead to confusion and disjointed narrative; Ms. Hyslop generally avoids this, but there is one instance toward the end of the tale that I find particularly confusing (I will not reveal it lest I spoil).  Overall, the story is well-written, original, interesting, and memorable.  There is also a horrifying, clever twist at the end.  5 out of 7 rocket-dragons.

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