Twentieth Century House

Twentieth Century House CoverA novella-sized e-book containing five startling speculative short stories. From the fantastical to the futuristic, these stories span a century or more, ranging from magic realism to a vision of the ubiquitously connected world of the late 21st century. A bargain at $1.49!

The Stories

“Leaving Paris” –  in a world where artists can temporarily become other people for inspiration, what happens when you take on the persona of a psychopath? (First published in On-Spec)

“The Mechanics of Love” – a man is besieged by the media, curious onlookers and hunters as he finds out what happens when love crosses the species barrier. (First published in The Malahat Review)

“Twentieth Century House” – late in the 21st century, a woman and her family try to find refuge from tragedy by joining a reality show set in the 1970s. (First published in The Malahat Review)

“Tofino” – a man and a raven travel through a world utterly changed, searching for a way to undo a disastrous decision. (First published in Tesseracts 11)

“A Node in the Network” two young exchange students journey through personal catastrophe and the challenges of a dawning post-human future. (First published by Arc Magazine/Intel Tomorrow Project UK)


From A Node in the Network

There was a girl, Anja, the daughter of a work colleague of her father’s. She’d had a history of emotional issues in several different colours and flavours. She was going back to school after a long absence, to the same foreign university, as a matter of fact, and could she, Sara, keep an eye out for her?

Sara saw her the first day. She was sitting in one of the chairs in the lobby of International House when Sara went to check in.

“You know this is also the Disability Resource Centre?”

“Who, me?” Sara looked at the girl in the chair and it was at that moment that she though, ah, Anja. It was not just that she had spoken to her in Dutch. Something about the slightly stringy hair, the clothes, just a bit eccentric for a girl from their part of the world. And her gaze – it held an intensity that suggested troubled waters beneath the surface.

“Last year they combined it with International House. Implying perhaps something about we foreigners…”

Nobody was behind the front counter. The doors behind it were closed. Colourful posters twinkled at them from the walls. Small desktop automata scurried to and fro.

Sara sat down. “They do treat us like small children, it’s true. But disabled?” Upon orientation she’d been handed packages of material on regular paper, bright with diagrams and maps, directions to International House and a strong suggestion it be her first stop on campus. She noticed the domestic students had received nothing physical, though she imagined invisible streams of data filling the air around them.

“You’ll see. They’re all very sweet in a hateful sort of way.”