Review: Abort

Publisher Description:

It’s easy to tell when someone is dead, but what makes them alive? Is it the memories they keep, or the pain they feel, or the love they share? For Cecilio, the first colony of Proxima B, the answer could bring prosperity or crack the very foundations of society.

After a five-year leave of absence, Commander Mason Wyatt is sent to an antique starship with the chance to earn back his rank and bury his past. All he must do is uphold the answer: life is what Cecilio says it is. But as the starship nears Proxima B, Mason’s past boils to the surface and Cecilio’s answer begins to unravel.

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Review: Abort by C D Hulen

Here at the Periapsis Press blog, we only post reviews of works we recommend, so you already know I enjoyed Abort. I encourage you to check it out!

This review contains minor spoilers.

Abort is a Christian science-fiction short story filled with tension and thematic imagery. This review will be a little more condensed so as not to give too much away.

Tension

The plot is relatively simple and revolves around a single big decision that the main character needs to make. C. D. Hulen does an excellent job maintaining the tension through the careful metering of information, keeping an element of mystery through the first act, and then continually raising the stakes through the second.

Sympathetic Characters

The main character Mason Wyatt is readily sympathetic, even though he initially represents the immoral position on the topic at hand – what is life and what is his responsibility regarding it. He does have a clunky conversion scene in the third act, making this “Christian Fiction” in the traditional definition of the genre.

Not Abortion Argument

The title and imagery in this work appear at first glance to be a neon sign labeling it as allegory. However, the situation presented would more readily suggest a discussion regarding immigration, as the individuals involved are adults approaching a planet where they are unwanted.

However, Abort is not really an argument against abortion. It is Christian Fiction, after all, and intended for Christian readers. The only argument made in the story regarding the question of morality is that killing these people is wrong because God says so. That should be more than enough for any Christ-follower.

They Are Blind

Abort is nominally allegorical, but it is not a situational argument. The premise is not, “You wouldn’t kill these people in this situation which is similar to abortion, so abortion is clearly wrong.”

Instead, the state of affairs is, “No, they WOULD kill these people and unborn children.”

Two characters express frustration in trying to reason with Mason Wyatt: “Why can’t you see?” The answer is that he is blind until he is saved and his eyes are opened. That is the true issue at the heart of this story and the abortion issue in our society. Without God there is no moral authority. People need God to change their hearts in order to repent of their sin, regardless of what social issue it falls under.

Abortion is wrong because God says so, and while it is important to do what we can to prevent such evil from occurring in our communities, Christians need to be mindful that our arguments are not necessarily going to reach our opponents. Hulen skillfully reminds the reader that the immortal souls of those men and women are also at stake. By the grace of God, our diligent witness and prayers may reach where arguments do not.

Check It Out!

Abort is an engaging little read with a compelling plot and thematic exploration. I am excited to try more from C. D. Hulen!

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