What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

The Chief Designer (Great Science Fiction Stories)
This topic is about The Chief Designer
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SOLVED: Adult Fiction > SOLVED. Novella or Short Story. Alternate Universe. Soviet Gulag. [s]

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drowningmermaid | 129 comments This is a shorter work that I never got to read in its entirety, but I believe it appeared in one of the major sci fi/fantasy magazines... I THINK some time between 2000 and 2004. Can't swear to that.

I only remember the beginning, which features a political prisoner turning big rocks into little rocks and he's so worn out and brainwashed that he only thinks of himself as his prisoner number, and has virtually forgotten his own name.

I believe he becomes the main protag and it turns out he was a rocket scientist prior to being shipped to Siberia for political subversion.

Stalin makes an appearance in this work, and he is referred to repeatedly as "The Boss."

It had something to do with a rocket launch. And it ends with Stalin and another character comparing notes on what they expected to happen.

I believe, also, that this work may have been nominated for a Hugo or Nebula.

I've already checked and it doesn't look like Charles Coleman Finlay's "The Political Prisoner" or "The Political Officer."


message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

This sounds like an interesting story! Are you still looking for it?


message 3: by Andy (new)

Andy Love | 2095 comments "A Tupolev Too Far" by Brian Aldiss? A Tupolev Too Far and Other Stories


drowningmermaid | 129 comments I actually did find it!

I finally read 'The Chief Designer' by Andy Duncan, which caught my eye the year it came out. Nice bit of historical fiction.... didn't seem to have much speculative element to it. Still nice to see some Korolev lurff.

(I would love to see some Soviet/Stalinist magical realism or urban fantasy or alternate history.)


message 5: by Kris (new)

Kris | 35166 comments Mod
Glad you found your book, drowningmermaid. Here's the link - The Chief Designer by Andy Duncan.


message 6: by Andy (new)

Andy Love | 2095 comments Glad you found it (I should have thought of that one - I remember when it came out)


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