Apex Magazine # 47 (e-mag review).

This is something different! A rather unique identity with challenging, rewarding and expertly crafted fiction! This is the first time I’ve had a look at ‘Apex Magazine’ and I’m rather pleased I did. All you have to do is look up the website and the fiction comes free of charge. However, should you wish to purchase it in various forms, it’s available from approximately a couple of quid per issue. Everything you want to know about the magazine can be found on the website so without much further ado, let’s go straight to the fiction to see what’s on offer.


Four short stories in this issue. Michael Griffin’s ‘The Lure Of Devouring Light’ was fairly powerful and emotive. The characters could not be stronger. It told about the encounter between a young aspiring musician woman meeting up with a legendary Croatian cello player about to perform Stockhausen’s Licht. This man is a beast. He devours people, especially women. A physical wreck, he has left behind many tragedies, people abused and very hurt. Will she be another of his victims? As she is drawn into the meeting, you begin to feel apprehensive for her well-being but she’s not without foundation and stamina. An atmospheric story, it takes you to places you don’t want to go but feel compelled to view nonetheless.

Sofia Samatar’s ‘Dawn And The Maiden’ was challenging, so challenging that I didn’t have a clue as to what it was about. Okay, so I’m emotionally insensitive, nothing wrong in that, but to me this sort of stuff is rather pointless. While at times the words were poetic and lovely, it was all much of a dream, like a fleecy white cloud passing in the sky above.

Ken Liu’s ‘Build-A-Dolly’ was without exception rather good. I’ve read some of this guy’s work before and this story did not let him down. It’s basically about a doll that belonged to a young girl but the girl gets older while the doll is still programmed to be the perfect companion. We then go through some of the history of the doll we realise that we are also examining human relationships to the end of the line. Great stuff, well worth reading!

Finally, we’ve got Daniel Abraham’s ‘Hurt Me’, which is a ghost story, though this description is maybe a bit ambiguous. We are taken from the purchase of a house by a single woman, meandering through the angles of an estate agent, to her settling in and experiencing an atmosphere that’s not overly beneficial to anybody’s sanity. There is something in the house! Does she run away or face up to it? Would it conquer her? This is without doubt a magnificent story which captivates the reader, engulfs the reader until you are almost living in the house beside her, making you a ghost as well. Could not be better!

Along with the fiction, you will find editorial, reviews and articles. You can also look at past magazines and there are even opportunities for aspiring writers but looking at what they have on view, a very careful study of ‘Apex’ would be required before you submit anything to suit their unique style. Certainly pleased that I looked at their website and I will be waiting for the next edition of this bimonthly magazine with interest and anticipation.

Rod MacDonald

April 2013

(pub: Apex. Digital mag. Price: $ 2.99 (US))

check out website:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.