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

Strange Horizons, February 19, 2018

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Strange Horizons, February 19, 2018

Early Morning Service” by Irette Y. Patterson

Reviewed by Christos Antonaros

Reading “Early Morning Service” by Irette Y. Patterson, you quickly put yourself outside Mt. Hope Baptist church ready to listen to the gospel. It’s early in the morning, and this old lady outside the church door passes you a program. You know her name, you call her Miss Gen, and you also know that every time she will reach into her handbag she will finally treat you with your favorite candy. Always your favorite, even if you haven’t told her which one is your favorite. What you don’t know though is that Miss Gen has more than one name. Most importantly, you don’t know that Miss Gen’s handbag is always empty, and that’s because she doesn’t carry candies with her, she conjures them. A beautiful story showing us that we can have a nice day in the church because the spirits of those who sacrificed themselves are still here with us, taking care of us with magic.