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

Black Gate Online, January 27, 2013

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Black Gate Online, January 27th, 2013

The Gunnerman” by Jason E. Thummel

Reviewed by Cyd Athens

Jason E. Thummel's "The Gunnerman" is a blow-by-blow of a battle at sea between two sailing ships like those in Pirates of the Caribbean. It is told from the perspective of the Gunner, Clap, a superstitious man who is mocked for his devotion to Shullum, Great Lord of the Deep. The only thing that makes this fantasy instead of historical fiction is the presence of a weather mage. Her role in this piece is marginal.

Mr. Thummel has a penchant here for unnecessarily long sentences. At least a dozen of them are well over thirty words in length, including this gem that weighs in at fifty words:

"Old Fellmore, who was known to be far better with the herbs, stitching and drinking than he was with the magic would be on the poop, strengthening the conjured web weave that would cut down on collateral splinter injuries and trying to take a bite out of the approaching storm."

For readers who enjoy either this topic or this style of writing, this will be a predictable read with few surprises.


Cyd Athens indulges a speculative fiction addiction from 45ø 29 30.65 N, 122ø 35 30.91 W.