Book Review: “When We Were Starless” by Simone Heller (Five Stars)

Book Review: “When We Were Starless” by Simone Heller

(Five Stars)

“We didn’t change a thing, and all our sacrifices were just to survive another day. It was enough, mostly, as long as we pretended it didn’t tear our hearts out.”

“We can’t afford to believe in comfort. There’s only blackness.”

Excellent. Packs a bunch of storytelling into just a few pages. Bright and tight.

“If the winds are willing and you’re keeping us safe, I’ll eat the stuff that’s trying to eat me.”

Heller builds her world through the eyes of her protagonist. The reader learns Mink’s troubles and hopes–and those of her adopted tribe–as she experiences the. Good job.

“You deny me my contribution to our survival, just because you’re too sappy to accept what has to be done.” He might still get his chance to die alone.

Cover art is from Clarksworld October 2018 magazine, in which this story appeared.

“Just remember, beyond the blackness, worlds are waiting.”

(2019 Hugo Short Story finalist)