cover image Tomorrow Factory: Collected Fiction

Tomorrow Factory: Collected Fiction

Rich Larson. Talos, $25.99 (320p) ISBN 978-1-945863-30-1

Larson compiles a provocative collection of 23 strange futures that include poetry and pithy flash fiction as well as longer visits to fluid virtual realms and remote alien worlds. Some rework old ideas into new shapes, including the time-travel adventure “Every So Often,” the long con of “You Make Pattaya,” and the broken planet hidden by virtual reality of “Atrophy.” “All That Robot Shit” has a familiar friendship along the lines of Robinson Crusoe and Robot Friday, and parents use technology to “perfect” their child in “Edited.” Other stories, including “Extraction Request,” “Brute,” and “Capricorn,” deliver straight-up action and violence with gritty cybertech settings. Larson’s range spreads from the outrageous teen partiers of “Motherfucking Retroparty Freestyle” to the murky undersea world of aquatic aliens in “Innumerable Glimmering Lights.” His colorful settings create strong backdrops for characters striving for goals small and large. This vibrant collection will give thoughtful readers plenty of entertainment. (Oct.)