REVIEW: “Excerpts from the Text of an Explanatory Stele Erected for Our Edification by the Scholars of the Outer Orion Tendril” by Timons Esaias

Review of Timons Esaias, “Excerpts from the Text of an Explanatory Stele Erected for Our Edification by the Scholars of the Outer Orion Tendril”, Clarkesworld Issue 180, September (2021): Read Online. Reviewed by Myra Naik.

The story is presented as a combination of personal narratives, transcripts, reports, and police and military conversation and decisions.

The Purple Tide is a cognizant entity who chooses what to and what not to destroy. As the story proceeds, we learn more about the Tide’s personality. Comic relief comes in the form of how humans take themselves way too seriously and try to enforce human rules on what is a blob of seemingly sentient slime.

An example – “The slime destroyed the tollbooths on the north bridge ramps and did not pay any tolls.”

The Purple Tide is an entity made of trash: main component – jelly. Human-made trash was responsible for the creation of the Tide, and slowly, humans are being destroyed by it. The gravity of the situation increases quickly as you go through the story.

An improbable piece of fiction, but nonetheless one that makes you really think about human excesses and callousness.

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