REVIEW: “Ghosts of Bari” by Wren Wallis

Review of Wren Wallis, “Ghosts of Bari”, Shimmer 46 (2018): 114-124 — Purchase here. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman.

Empires rise and empires falls, but against this grand backdrop, “salvage is the only long-term game in the universe” (p. 114). Eli, Mati, and Kin are a team of salvagers who work in the Bari region of the universe — a place that few other salvagers go — harvesting whatever they can from the ghost ships that float through there. They’re well-trained, they’re well-informed, they are good at what they do. But no amount of knowledge or experience can prepare the crew for a ship so old it doesn’t turn up in any of the Oracle’s databases. Not only that — this ship isn’t dead.

The story ultimately circles back to where it starts: The rise and fall of empires, how empires can be remembered and memorialised. There is a sharp pathos to this story that nearly brought tears to my eyes.

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