An enjoyably creepy novella, leaning more on the horror side of Martin’s writing rather than the science-fiction side. Feels very much like “Alien” in that sense (although since this novella came out only a year after the film’s release, it’s entirely possible Martin wrote the novella before seeing the film).
I felt like it was a bit busy with all the characters, with only the protagonist (who I only really identified as the protagonist halfway through) making much of a mark – everyone else has their individual traits, sure, but there’s so many of them, and the point of views switch so often, that it’s hard for many of them to land. Curiously, this story seems to lean more on atmosphere than characterisation, which is unusual for Martin.
Still, all the horror elements are executed very well, and the novella has a delightfully creepy ending. I give it three whisperjewels, and a wrist computer.