November 09, 2010

Reviews of At Cross Purposes

Read an excerpt of this story here!

Lois Tilton, writing for
Locus Online, says,
Alternating between points of view, Wade gives us a fascinating bunch of aliens, full of their own conflicts, engaging in their own various ways with the problem of understanding the alien humans. Their language patterns are particularly interesting, mirroring their culture. Among the humans, Lynn and Doris serve conflicting purposes, but their primary problem lies in understanding the aliens, figuring out what they mean, what they are asking.

Karen Anderson, science fiction author and widow of Poul Anderson, says,
Good work! This is the kind of take-nothing-for-granted attitude John Campbell liked to see.

Craig Reade of cxPulp says,
This is a pretty intricate story, and writing it had to be a fun exercise... It's basically a first contact story, but Wade takes the time to craft the story from a more realistic perspective. ...exactly how do you befriend a people when you know nothing about their society, collective goals as a people, their expectations, and even what they find to be an insult? The alien chapters are particularly well done, though somewhat difficult to read. That's seems to be intentional - they are written from the alien's perspective, complete with their regular use of language. Wade makes great effort not to taint these sections with any "human" perspective, instead writing them strictly in accordance to the rules she has established for that race. I am very much a fan of work based on this kind of advance planning - I find it makes for more interesting characters, and in this instance it helped you really experience what the human protagonists were going through. A great start. (4.5)

And notoriousaq says,
The first story was the best in the book and it was also good enough to have me reflect on it months after having read it... Like several of the stories in this issue, this story deals with the interaction of different cultures/species, particularly with more animal characteristics. I loved all of the concepts that Wade was using here - purpose, linguistic communication, etc. The concept of purpose is so philosophically cool that I give the author kudos just for using it. It was a little difficult to start reading - since the writing style is so different. It grew on me, though. This would be a fantastic story to develop into a huge series of books. I would love to get to know all the species and characters a lot better. This was well done. (5)