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"The Recreation Room": 11/27/07
The fourth story in October/ November issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction is a short story by Albert E. Cowdrey that draws heavily on his personal experience as an evacuee of hurricane Katrina.
In a way reminiscent of Daphne du Maurier's story "Don't Look Now" this Katrina ghost story begins with a prophesy from a psychic. Jim is warned: "There be dead folks in your attic." Who has died (or will die) in Jim's attic is the lingering question throughout "The Recreation Room" because Madame Lott has never been wrong before.
"The Recreation Room" is mostly a social commentary on the events of Katrina from New Orleans' near destruction, the victims, the chaos during the flooding and the failure of FEMA and the rest of the federal government to react. It isn't until the last couple of pages that the story finally comes into its own as a well written ghost story. This is fantasy in the vein of H. G. Wells and Jonathan Swift.