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Contains Multitudes

3.62  ·  Rating details ·  58 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
Being a teenager is tough. Being part of the first generation of teenagers to share their body and soul with one of the aliens who just barely destroyed the earth: way tougher.

This compact but powerful short story from Ben Burgis, a relative newcomer to the speculative fiction world, places everyday teen angst on a landscape of intergalactic and interspecies conflict, to c
ebook, 32 pages
Published July 17th 2013 by Tor Books
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Dichotomy Girl
Feb 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was much too short. I want to read more in the world, and find out what happens next to the world at large.
Karyn Kar Mun (Thy Evil Queen)
This is one of the best short science fiction stories I’ve read in a long time; the consequences of an alien invasion on an alternate earth with its own alternate history. The humans were given a choice: be destroyed utterly, or to allow infant aliens to merge with the children. They don’t really have much of a choice – the theme here is survival; the aliens are obviously doing this to survive, because for some reason they cannot raise their next generation without outside help anymore. This arr ...more
Sidsel Pedersen
Dec 25, 2013 rated it liked it
Within that half hour it paints the story of a whole alternative history, where the Earth has been invaded by aliens and has somehow merged with humanity. It does this very effectively. Of course there are few details but you get enough of a sense of what happened to get the idea and understand the context of the story.

It is also a love story between two teenagers. And there is no pinning what so ever - so that is lovely! It is really sweet and feels so real - unlike so many teenage love stories
Dec 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
Brilliant, brutal, teen spec fic. Alien invasion stories are generally pretty great, and this was no exception. Also loved the David Cronenberg-style finish. Plus: apparently, we carry around 3lbs of bacteria in our gut anyway, and only 10% of our cells are "us" (and not bacteria), and these gut bacteria apparently affect moods, so... yeah, an "alien in your gut" premise doesn't seem so farfetched. (FWIW, there's an excellent bacteria essay in The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2011.)
Jul 21, 2013 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Maggie Gordon
(Shudders) So that was a wonderfully creepy story! Aliens essentially conquered Earth, and now the newest generation hosts them in our bodies. Ewww... The set-up is very interesting, the progress of the story, but I think near the end things come to a climax a bit too fast. This would be an interesting concept to expand to a full book.
Jan 31, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015, ebook, own, in-anthology
Well, this one was really short. And that was a pity. I really liked the idea of two entities, two consciences that enjoy different things in a body but unfortunately that isn't much explored. I wanted to see them interact more, to have a better grasp of the character's fear of separation and how they eventually merge. 3/5
Sep 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
Nice little story. Maybe having an alien in your gut isn't so bad?
Aug 01, 2013 added it
Shelves: tor-com
Another short story.

No review, I'm not feeling it.
Feb 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
simply amazing
one of the best short stories I've read
extremely well composed and incredibly dense with information, but very enjoyable and pleasurable to read
Okey story, read at for free... not what I expected but good!
Vishakha ~ ReadingSpren ~
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Ben Burgis is a graduate of Clarion West, and he has an MFA in Creative Writing from the Stonecoast program in Maine. He writes speculative fiction and realist fiction and grocery lists and Facebook status updates and academic papers. (He has a PhD from the University of Miami, and currently holds a post-doctoral fellowship at Yonsei University in South Korea.) His work has appeared in places like ...more
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