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The Fluted Girl (Great Science Fiction Stories)

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The fluted girl had been given Revitia treatments at thirteen to freeze her features in the matrix of youth. She had been given the stolen black eyes of an Indian girl. Pigment drugs drained color from her skin. Then surgeries and cell knitters completed her transformation into a performance artist for the rich. This story is part of the publisher's Great Science Fiction S The fluted girl had been given Revitia treatments at thirteen to freeze her features in the matrix of youth. She had been given the stolen black eyes of an Indian girl. Pigment drugs drained color from her skin. Then surgeries and cell knitters completed her transformation into a performance artist for the rich. This story is part of the publisher's Great Science Fiction Stories audio series. It's on 1 CD approximately 62 minutes in length. The author was recently awarded the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award for best short science fiction.


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The fluted girl had been given Revitia treatments at thirteen to freeze her features in the matrix of youth. She had been given the stolen black eyes of an Indian girl. Pigment drugs drained color from her skin. Then surgeries and cell knitters completed her transformation into a performance artist for the rich. This story is part of the publisher's Great Science Fiction S The fluted girl had been given Revitia treatments at thirteen to freeze her features in the matrix of youth. She had been given the stolen black eyes of an Indian girl. Pigment drugs drained color from her skin. Then surgeries and cell knitters completed her transformation into a performance artist for the rich. This story is part of the publisher's Great Science Fiction Stories audio series. It's on 1 CD approximately 62 minutes in length. The author was recently awarded the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award for best short science fiction.

30 review for The Fluted Girl (Great Science Fiction Stories)

  1. 5 out of 5

    Circuithead

    This is the best example of "good idea, horrible execution" I've ever seen. This author's unnecessarily flowery writing means that reading it feels like a chore. A short story should not feel like a chore. The ending is underwhelming and confusing. The whole book is underwhelming and confusing. I've never felt less attached to a set of characters, ever. I'm still not entirely sure what the author was trying to do. The Fluted Girl tries to draw you into this dystopian world, completely fails at i This is the best example of "good idea, horrible execution" I've ever seen. This author's unnecessarily flowery writing means that reading it feels like a chore. A short story should not feel like a chore. The ending is underwhelming and confusing. The whole book is underwhelming and confusing. I've never felt less attached to a set of characters, ever. I'm still not entirely sure what the author was trying to do. The Fluted Girl tries to draw you into this dystopian world, completely fails at it through lack of explanation, and then cuts it off at the point where it felt like nothing happened. I feel like I wasted time.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Kirsten

    Paolo Bacigalupi is my favorite just discovered author! I highly recommend him for fans of Margaret Atwood. His future speculated Earth are frightening, horrifying and very plausible. Financial feudalism and gene modification are two of the themes he plays with. The characters are very believable and the plots are thrilling.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Lars Dradrach

    A disturbing short story about a dystopian society where everything is for sale. Told in a 1. person narrative that slowly exposes more and more horrifying details.

  4. 5 out of 5

    M. Keep

    I really loved the world that this short is set in. I'm absolutely fascinated to learn more about the speculative fiction portions. Unfortunately, I found the writing so flowery in describing the titular character that I had trouble picturing her - and because of that I found that it was hard to really lose myself in it. I kept having to reevaluate how the main character looked and how much was literal and how much was figurative. I think it was beautiful, though, and I wish I had enjoyed it more. I really loved the world that this short is set in. I'm absolutely fascinated to learn more about the speculative fiction portions. Unfortunately, I found the writing so flowery in describing the titular character that I had trouble picturing her - and because of that I found that it was hard to really lose myself in it. I kept having to reevaluate how the main character looked and how much was literal and how much was figurative. I think it was beautiful, though, and I wish I had enjoyed it more. It really is a fascinating concept and world and I'll be trying out more from this author to see if something else fits for me.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Mal Warwick

    Human enhancement is one of the recurring themes in the work of Paolo Bacigalupi. Today's prosthetic limbs, Lasik surgery, and in-vitro fertilization merely point the way toward the wild possibilities Bacigalupi posits in his fiction. He goes far beyond the human genetic engineering now in development to make humans stronger, smarter, and healthier. Like Margaret Atwood in her Maddaddam Trilogy, he envisions highly intelligent animals that combine the best traits of several species. And he portr Human enhancement is one of the recurring themes in the work of Paolo Bacigalupi. Today's prosthetic limbs, Lasik surgery, and in-vitro fertilization merely point the way toward the wild possibilities Bacigalupi posits in his fiction. He goes far beyond the human genetic engineering now in development to make humans stronger, smarter, and healthier. Like Margaret Atwood in her Maddaddam Trilogy, he envisions highly intelligent animals that combine the best traits of several species. And he portrays far-future humans adapted to the harsh conditions of Earth once climate change has rendered the planet unlivable for today's frail human species. In The Fluted Girl, twin girls' development has been arrested before puberty and their bodies converted into musical instruments. They are showpieces in a future media-mad society, destined for stardom at the price of their humanity. About the author Paolo Bacigalupi has won the Hugo, Nebula, Compton Crook, Theodore Sturgeon, and Michael L. Printz awards, and was nominated for the National Book Award. In addition to his five sci-fi novels, a collection of short stories, and these three novelettes, he has collaborated on a novella and a novel, both of them works of fantasy.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Katherine

    Distressing and dystopian, this novelette is very well done. You don't know exactly what is going on at first, and the details are slowly revealed as the story goes on, to get to a climax of almost horror. Excellent throughout. Distressing and dystopian, this novelette is very well done. You don't know exactly what is going on at first, and the details are slowly revealed as the story goes on, to get to a climax of almost horror. Excellent throughout.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Librariann

    I read this because a less than glowing review of Stronger, Faster, and More Beautiful mentioned it. I don't usually log short stories but this was haunting enough that I wanted to remember reading it. That Paolo Bacigalupi. Heartwrenching. I read this because a less than glowing review of Stronger, Faster, and More Beautiful mentioned it. I don't usually log short stories but this was haunting enough that I wanted to remember reading it. That Paolo Bacigalupi. Heartwrenching.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    This is a great quick listen - only about an hour or so in length! Enjoyed it very much.

  9. 4 out of 5

    shelby

    I am severely confused.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Robert Brodie

    Excruciatingly entrancingly poignant The authors imagination is exquisite. The reader is taken into the fragile world of a biologically engineered magical human being. Must read

  11. 5 out of 5

    Paige Ellen Stone

    This short story first appeared in Paolo Bacigalupi's collection of stories entitled, "Pump Six". I must admit I have an issue with the kindle publication of a story that has already appeared in a book that I owned but have not yet gotten around to reading. Enough about that. This is a very intriguing story of the future, the future of genetics, the future of the classes and the future of the meaning of "person." PB writes stories with an imagination that is very unique to him. I am reticent to g This short story first appeared in Paolo Bacigalupi's collection of stories entitled, "Pump Six". I must admit I have an issue with the kindle publication of a story that has already appeared in a book that I owned but have not yet gotten around to reading. Enough about that. This is a very intriguing story of the future, the future of genetics, the future of the classes and the future of the meaning of "person." PB writes stories with an imagination that is very unique to him. I am reticent to give any details because they might serve as spoilers. That being said, PB imagines a world in which human beings can be so altered genetically that they are more living things than they are human beings. In this case, "the fluted girl" is just that, a girl so altered as to be a musical instrument to serve at the pleasure of her cruel mistress. The practice session with her "partner" goes well and all is set for their grand unveiling. PB introduces a most wonderful twist, one that is worth the wait, and that twist produces another, absolutely unpredictable twist, with which the story ends. It left me flabbergasted. It left me hanging. I loved it.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra Mcgowan

    The endings are what slay me with Paolo Bacigalupi. You're eager to read, read, read! Because the characters are so, so human even when they are not, their feelings are raw, intense. The stories draw you in and then you're left panting at the end, crazed-eyes as you stare at the end of the last page, pondering about all the what-ifs. This one slayed me for these reasons and more. The endings. They're violent, horrible, frustrating. And you can't help but open the next Bacigalupi and read up a nove The endings are what slay me with Paolo Bacigalupi. You're eager to read, read, read! Because the characters are so, so human even when they are not, their feelings are raw, intense. The stories draw you in and then you're left panting at the end, crazed-eyes as you stare at the end of the last page, pondering about all the what-ifs. This one slayed me for these reasons and more. The endings. They're violent, horrible, frustrating. And you can't help but open the next Bacigalupi and read up a novel that'll leave you frustrated, angry and addicted.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Adriane Mckinney

    Really intriguing short story that had all the great hallmarks of Bacigalupi's mastery of disturbing dystopian societies. I saw notes of the dog men from shipbreaker in the guard and wondered if the worlds were connected. I did feel this story was a bit further removed from plausible future reality than his usual work though. I would have liked to see more of his usual balance in terms of realistic scientific future mixed with extreme dystopian circumstances. The characters themselves were beaut Really intriguing short story that had all the great hallmarks of Bacigalupi's mastery of disturbing dystopian societies. I saw notes of the dog men from shipbreaker in the guard and wondered if the worlds were connected. I did feel this story was a bit further removed from plausible future reality than his usual work though. I would have liked to see more of his usual balance in terms of realistic scientific future mixed with extreme dystopian circumstances. The characters themselves were beautifully human and there was a surprising amount of depth considering the length.

  14. 5 out of 5

    David

    I read the short story version of this in Gardiner Dozois' annual anthology. It haunted me for months. I eventually gained the courage to try one of his novels, Shipbreakers. There is vision and empathy in this author, but I would like to see him explore other themes, even if the rich-poor divide is not so important and compelling. This story will remain in my consciousness for a long while. I read the short story version of this in Gardiner Dozois' annual anthology. It haunted me for months. I eventually gained the courage to try one of his novels, Shipbreakers. There is vision and empathy in this author, but I would like to see him explore other themes, even if the rich-poor divide is not so important and compelling. This story will remain in my consciousness for a long while.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Zaz

    I suppose this one could fit very well in the horror genre as it was really horrible and disgusting in the suggested things (nothing explicit, but it was horrible nonetheless). It was really smooth and well built, but please, I don't want to know more about this world. I suppose this one could fit very well in the horror genre as it was really horrible and disgusting in the suggested things (nothing explicit, but it was horrible nonetheless). It was really smooth and well built, but please, I don't want to know more about this world.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan Appleton

    Another short story from Bacigalupi, and another hit. In feudal future America body modification is an art the aristocracy can use or perform on their surfs. This is the story of a young girl sold into the fiefdom and her struggles. Character development is key here and done well.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Pennie

    The Fluted Girl is fantastic, disturbing and chillingly plausible; all rolled up into an extraordinary short story.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey

    Beautifully horrifying, and the perfect example of saying exactly enough.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Vi

    Very interesting story

  20. 5 out of 5

    Josh

    Got through most of the short stories. Pocketful of Dharma was great, Fluted Girl was good, the rest are ok.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Suzi

    Kind of sick and twisted, but in a subtle way. Kind of a modern-day Frankenstein story.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Christen

    Wow. Bacigalupi is a master of the slow reveal. What a beautifully crafted--and terrifying--story.

  23. 4 out of 5

    kelly rutherford

    More! The only complaint I have is that The Fluted Girl is a short story and that it is not developed into a novel!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Melita Mihaljevic

    Weird short story

  25. 5 out of 5

    Wanja Akkerhuis

  26. 5 out of 5

    Keith

  27. 5 out of 5

    Scott Neville

  28. 4 out of 5

    Lawtorm

  29. 5 out of 5

    Alexander Shashkin

  30. 4 out of 5

    Raymond

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