By in Books

Short Science Fiction Story Review – Brian W Aldiss – Breathing Space

1955 – The Friday Project Press – Spoiler Alerts

A short story that Aldiss used to explore themes later developed in more detail in his brilliant novel, Non-Stop (published in 1958)

The premise has a similar Plato’s Cave motif. A group of tribalistic people trapped in a small closed environment (a machine hall) fight and argue among themselves with heretical rebels arguing that there may be a bigger World outside worth finding and exploring.

The rebels risk interception by drone gliders and taken away through a hatch in the ceiling, but a few intrepid mavericks plan to break out to the greater realm beyond anyway.

A crueller harsher outcome than that of the novel, but a powerful work in itself that makes us question whether we accept our place in life or dare to be someone or somewhere else. Either way the outcome may be tragic for us.

Arthur Chappell

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Vickiw wrote on January 11, 2015, 10:35 AM

I find that in order for some writing like this to interest the new generation it has to be cruel and harsh! It's the altered rain development!

Soonerdad3 wrote on January 11, 2015, 10:43 AM

I am not much into short stories, but I do like Science Fiction as a genre.

maramadalina wrote on January 11, 2015, 10:49 AM

The story seems pretty interesting. I like Science Fiction. Have a relaxing Sunday. emoticon :smile:

MegL wrote on January 11, 2015, 1:14 PM

There were some real "greats" in science fiction in those days. It seems to have morphed more into fantasy these days, or maybe I am just not seeing the new writers?

soupdragon wrote on January 11, 2015, 1:36 PM

I don't think I have the right sort of brain to understand science fiction. I even get confused when watching Dr Who

arthurchappell wrote on January 11, 2015, 3:09 PM

worth checking Lois McMaster Bujold MegL good strong science fiction ideas

MegL wrote on January 11, 2015, 3:18 PM

Thanks. Must have a look

BodieMor wrote on January 12, 2015, 12:28 AM

I haven't read this one but will... Thanks for the review!