Tuesday, June 10, 2014


This is not a review of the publication Shimmer; this is a review of the fantasy short story "Shimmer," written by Amanda C. Davis, published by Daily Science Fiction (and soon to be podcast by Cast of Wonders).  I don't know about Shimmer, but "Shimmer" is pretty amazing.  It's median rating on DSF is a perfect 7/7 and I find that fitting.

There are several characters in this story, but two take up the majority of the limelight.  That pair, including an unnamed first-person narrator/protagonist and a teenage boy named Benjie, work brilliantly in their roles.  Unlike in most stories of this length, they actually have arcs that drive the story.  They could be deeper in some places, but they have plenty of depth where depth was needed by the story.

I love this story's world-building.  It features a contemporary setting, but the inclusion of a few (unique) fantasy elements turns the world into something completely new and exciting.  The whole dynamic of socialization is made strange in the most wonderful way.

Character-driven fits the plot of "Shimmer" better than in a lot of stories.  While the plot points would have been hit regardless of the characters' arcs, what actually occurred at those points was determined by the arcs.  Each scene furthered both character and plot arcs simultaneously.  That's a tough yet very valid way to plot.

If you have a spare fifteen minutes, please check this story out.  Even if you're not a fan of fantasy, I think you'll like it.