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

Strange Horizons, June 5, 2017

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Strange Horizons, June 5, 2017

"Utopia, LOL?" by Jamie Wahls

Reviewed by Victoria Silverwolf

The familiar theme of a person with a fatal disease being cryogenically suspended and awakening into a strange world is used for the purpose of comedy and satire in "Utopia, LOL?" by Jamie Wahls. As the title indicates, much of the future depicted in this story is an exaggerated version of today's electronic social media. The story is narrated by the revived man's guide, a rather scatterbrained person who is a typical human being of her time. In her world, people can live in any of trillions of simulated universes, under the direction of the artificial intelligence that watches over humanity. After some madcap adventures in a couple of these realities, the revived man learns the secret plan of the AI, and makes an important choice. Although the story is mostly comic, at the end it becomes more serious, and even inspiring.

Victoria Silverwolf is rather scatterbrained herself.