A 4 Star Review of Forbidden Future: A Time Travel Anthology


A 4 Star Review by Moonwalker

As a whole, this is quite a fast read. The stories were so interesting that I read the first three right off the bat. If I don't find the first couple of paragraphs of a story out of a collection interesting, I'll most likely skip it and go on to the next one. It's a character flaw of mine. I found all of these stories interesting enough to continue reading in succession. Each story has its own strengths and weaknesses, so I'll address those in a review for each one. All of the stories were of very good quality, but there were some I liked better than others, due to personal preferences. I would give the entire anthology a four.

Between Utopias
A computer programmer finds himself in a future where there are two new worlds. One operates entirely on the imagination of its inhabitants, and in the other, everyone works to grow what they need. He has to decide between focusing on his own needs as an individual and be entirely alone, or becoming part of a community where everyone works for each other. I found the concept pretty interesting. The moral dilemma here is something that occurs often - Do I work only for my own benefit, or do I help others? I rather liked the surprise ending.

Forbidden Future
A scientist takes an unauthorized trip into the future in a time machine he is paid to maintain. The results are less than favourable. It's quite well written, but I feel there could have been more done with it in the way of content and character analysis.

An FBI agent follows a lead on his missing fiancé, and ends up in a warehouse where he is jumped into the future by two hundred years. It is not a great place to be. He has only 24 hours to find his girl and get back to the spot he started from. If he doesn't, he's stuck there. This has a fast moving and well written plot line, with a satisfying ending. I liked it very much.

This is a pretty good story. It uses a timepiece as a vehicle to go through time where a society exists where only people who test clean from diseases or other anomalies get to live and reproduce. It was intelligently and believably written. The ending leaves the reader wanting more, much more, as in a sequel.

Road Trip
Four friends take a road trip from Chicago, to Peoria Illinois. The trip is interrupted by a recurring bank of strange clouds, which transports them through time in increments. Each increment bodes worse for the future. The story has good character analysis, and a believable story line. The ending is unexpected. This was one of my favourites.

A rich man with a terminal illness is put into hibernation until a cure is found. He is awoken eight hundred years later, in a society where people are born, educated, and grown to adulthood in hibernation chambers. He is told that the world as he knew it was destroyed. All that remains is a totally enclosed self sufficient city. It seems like a true utopia, until he discovers that the entire society is not what it pretends to be. The ending has something of a preachy feel to it, but it's still an excellent piece.

The Mountains Haven't
This is an interesting take on the time travel theme. A woman in a small town sets off towards the mountains, to find answers for some deep questions. Along the way, she must prepare herself for the answers when she finds them. A pretty good read. It starts off pretty slow, but gets better.