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the genre's premiere review magazine for short SF & Fantasy since 1993

Diabolical Plots #49, March 2019

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Diabolical Plots #49, March 2019

"Heaven For Everyone" by Aimee Ogden

"The Last Death" by Sahara Frost

Reviewed by Victoria Silverwolf

Two theological fantasies appear in the electronic pages of this monthly magazine.

In "Heaven For Everyone" by Aimee Ogden, a group of people who want to bring Paradise to all of humanity get what they wish for in an unexpected way. God and angels appear on Earth, along with Old Testament plagues. The narrator is trapped on the roof of a building with an angel during a flood of, literally, Biblical proportions. Together they encounter a woman swept away by the flood.

The contrast between a realistic narrative style and fantastic events make for vivid reading. The narrator acts as a passive observer of bizarre circumstances. The intent seems to be a satiric look at fundamentalist literalism, but the story offers little beyond its imaginative premise.

The narrator of "The Last Death" by Sahara Frost is alone, waiting for the Grim Reaper to arrive. The incarnation of Death finally shows up, later than expected, with fears and concerns of its own. The two comfort each other as they confront their fates.

The main strength of this gentle fable is the author's ability to make Death a very human, believable character. Many readers will appreciate the optimistic tone. The plot is very simple, and the story might have been more effective at shorter length.

Victoria Silverwolf will continue to avoid offering any theological opinions.