ljgoldstein (ljgoldstein) wrote in theinferior4,

Novelette: "Flashpoint: Titan"

I’ve said before I’m not a fan of military sf, so unfortunately I found “Flashpoint: Titan” by Cheah Kai Wai so dull it took me three tries to finish it.  The Japanese Space Self Defense Force, out near Titan, is threatened by a Chinese space fleet, and the two exchange missile fire.  We get a lot of explosions, a lot of discussions of tactics, and the ritual litany of weapons: railguns, laser launch arrays, nuclear fusion warheads.  The author never gives any reason to care about these people, so for me, at any rate, the outcome of the battle didn’t matter.

This is the second story in There Will Be War, after “Seven Kill Tiger,” that features stereotypically evil Chinese, both individually and as a country.  “The Chinese will use deception, so we will use truth,” says Commander Hoshi Tenzen.  Of course two racist stories don’t make a trend, so I’m not calling the anthology There Will Be Racism just yet.  I’ll be approaching the final nominated story in this anthology with extreme skepticism, though.  (Another strange thing is that both these stories are by authors with Chinese names.  I don’t know what to make of that, really.)
Tags: cheah kai wai, flashpoint: titan, hugo awards, novelette

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