4.28.2010

Kij Johnson's "26 Monkeys, Also the Abyss"

The University of Oklahoma's World Literature Today recently published an excellent issue on World Science Fiction. I'll have more to report on that later, but I just received my copy in the mail yesterday and was simply blown away by Kij Johnson's "26 Monkeys, Also the Abyss." This is a quiet, wondrous tale of redemption, magic, connection and epiphany.

Johnson's beautiful, fluid prose and strong characterization make this story move. It's told in stripped-down vignettes. Aimee, the protagonist, is a woman adrift in her life, searching for companionship and solidity. She finds it in a travelling troop of twenty-six mismatched primates and boyfriend fifteen years her junior.

The story defies summary, to its credit, and the explanation for Aimee's magic trick is...well, it's just beautiful...

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