Review of Matt McHugh, “The Area Under the Curve”, Analog Science Fiction and Fact January/February (2023): 80–87 (Kindle) – Purchase Here. Reviewed by John Atom.
Emi and Zeika discover that their son Benny is an average boy – plain average – and therefore not qualified to join them in the upcoming mission to the generation ship. They must decide if they will join follow him on earth, or remain in space and continue with their mission.
The drama in the story is absolutely superb. The richness of detail in the fights and arguments between the two parents give the story a certain familiarity that every reader is bound to recognize. Moreover, the source of the tension in the story is wonderfully melancholic. I took some issue with the ending, as it felt like a bit like a cop-out from the original dilemma. Nevertheless, this is still one of the best stories in this issue.