Past Imperfect

Past Imperfect

5.0 1
by Martin H. Greenberg
     
 

Some of the most forward-thinking science fiction writers of our time take on the neverending paradoxes of time travel-in this original anthology of all-new tales by Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Peter Crowther, Jane Lindskold, Robin Wayne Bailey, Gary Braunbeck, Dean Wesley Smith, Jody Lynn Nye, James P. Hogan, and others.  See more details below

Overview

Some of the most forward-thinking science fiction writers of our time take on the neverending paradoxes of time travel-in this original anthology of all-new tales by Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Peter Crowther, Jane Lindskold, Robin Wayne Bailey, Gary Braunbeck, Dean Wesley Smith, Jody Lynn Nye, James P. Hogan, and others.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This fast, lightweight anthology of 12 time-travel tales contains a handful of standout stories, but many others rely on familiar tricks: Will the hero change his destiny by changing his past? Will the hero realize that that sound he heard all those years ago was his meddling future self? The most successful stories toy with genre conventions or use time travel as a device in support of bigger concerns. James P. Hogan's slyly amusing "Convolution" focuses on time-machine inventor Professor Abercrombie. The professor loses his notes before completing his machine, but a future version of himself sends a time machine back, embroiling Abercrombie in a neatly dovetailed succession of weird cross-time commutes. In Nina Kiriki Hoffman's amusing "Mint Condition," time travel takes a backseat to time-traveler Sissy's realization that her bosses are playing her for a fool. Family-centered stories include Jody Lynn Nye's light "Theory of Relativity," in which Rachel recruits another version of herself and tracks down their grandfather; Peter Crowther's emotionally fraught "Things I Didn't Know My Father Knew," about a man's opportunity to see his dead father; and Gary A. Braunbeck's touching "Palimpsest Day," wherein a man has the chance to change his life by intervening at one moment in his past. Newcomers to the genre will find many stories engaging, but too few of these entries question the clich?s they perpetuate. (Oct. 9) Forecast: A cover featuring a warped clock and a cartoon-like air vehicle will appeal to young readers more than to SF aficionados, and won't do much to boost sales. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
KLIATT
If I was a character in one of the stories in "Past Imperfect" and was late in submitting a review to KLIATT, I wouldn't worry. I'd just write the review, travel back in time and turn it in before the deadline! The 12 stories in this collection all share a common theme of travel across time. As Segriff notes in his introduction, modern physics theory does not rule out time travel (although current theory does indicate that it isn't practical), hence it is interesting to explore what time travel for humans might mean. Some stories, such as Kristine Kathyrn Rusch's "Blood Trail," involve time machines and explore the grandfather paradox (if you travel back in time and kill your grandfather before your father is conceived, you will never be born; but if you were never born, you couldn't have gone back in time...). Others, such as Peter Crowther's "Things I Didn't Know My Father Knew," walk a more mystical path. Even though the obvious theme is time travel, these stories also speak to broader topics about people, morality, and our place in the universe. I would definitely recommend this collection to SF fans, but would also encourage those who do not normally read SF to give some of these stories a try. Category: Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror. KLIATT Codes: JSA—Recommended for junior and senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2001, DAW, 314p., $6.99. Ages 13 to adult. Reviewer: Thomas S. Downey; Teacher, Rivers Sch., Weston, MA SOURCE: KLIATT, March 2002 (Vol. 36, No. 2)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780756400125
Publisher:
Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
Publication date:
10/01/2001
Series:
DAW Book Collectors Series, #1202
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
4.40(w) x 6.72(h) x 0.85(d)

Meet the Author

Martin H. Greenberg was honored in 1995 by the Mystery Writers of America with the Ellery Queen Award for lifetime achievement in mystery editing. He is also the recipient of two Anthony awards. Mystery Scene magazine called him "the best mystery anthologist since Ellery Queen." He has compiled more than 1,000 anthologies and is the president of TEKNO books. He lives in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

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Past Imperfect 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
This collection of twelve wonderfully well-written tales centers on the paradox of time travel with some tales going back into the past and other forward into the future. This reviewer¿s personal preferences are those tales that focus on the impact of someone altering an acceptable historical event (unless someone drifts back and takes away the EC comic involving sending a probe back to the dinosaur age that I read as a child). Each entry is fun and supports the limitless possibilities of what if that makes time paradoxes so engaging and imaginative, and time streams so impossible to grasp. These dozen are very good and entertaining. These strong authors provide readers with near perfect contributions for inclusion in PAST IMPERFECT.

Harriet Klausner