Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Art of Space Travel, by Nina Allen

The Art of Space Travel is my first read in the Novelette category for the Hugo awards this year.  They don't look too gamey, only two Sad Puppy nominees that I can definitely pick out.  Most of them look pretty good.

This one is the story of the head of housekeeping for a Heathrow hotel, one where the astronauts for a one-way mission to Mars in 2047 are staying.  It's a position she has settled for after trying to follow in her mother, "Moolie"s footsteps.  Moolie (not her real name) was a metallurgist, and is now suffering from dementia.

Moolie was working on the previous Mars mission, the New Dawn, that ended in tragedy in 2017.  She had her daughter during that time, but has told her daughter she doesn't know who her father is.

The story is very insightful, you really get to know the protagonist and the other characters.  The mission is very much a part of the story, which could pretty much be happening today.  The ending is just a little off, maybe could be a few paragraphs shorter, which takes it from 4 stars to 3 for me.   But still a very good read.

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