Review: “The Machine is Perfect, The Engineer is Nobody” by Brett Alexander Savory

1 of 5 stars.

Like the first season of Lost, this tale starts with desperation and an enigma, develops into tension, mistrust and awkward affection, and then opens a hatch in the floor to a bunch of new questions without bothering to answer any of the original ones. And like Lost, I liked it until this promised to go nowhere.

A man and a woman awaken to find themselves in a cave with no doors or windows, just a too-small air duct vertically extending from the ceiling. Bottles of water, cans of food and jars of kerosene occupy one corner, a mattress lies in another. A third corner has a toilet hole. Mechanistic noises grind and whir outside.

4 months later, the supplies have dwindled and strangers share an awkward kiss. But there is distrust, deservedly. The noises change and a drill pierces the floor of the cave from beneath. . .

This tale appears in Creatures: Thirty Years of Monsters edited by John Langan and Paul Tremblay after originally appearing in Taddle Creek.
[Check out my other reviews here.]


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