The plots and settings of the stories collected in Mars might get labeled as science fiction or dystopian, but the works themselves feel weightless, unmoored to any real convention as they probe dark corners of the human psyche. There are clones, trips to distant planets, even zombies, but far more memorable are the moments charged with meaning that so often end Bakić's stories, where a look, a touch or a word can upend the world ... Tricky and hard to pin down, these stories tease and perplex. Readers who might not be interested by zombies and interplanetary space flight shouldn't discount this book. Likewise, lovers of science fiction and horror will find a wonderfully surreal take on tried-and-true stories, where the strictures of plot break open to release something stranger and darker. Bakić knows exactly what forms she employs, and deconstructs, in service of creating the unsettling moods of her stories. It's a pleasure to feel so unmoored and still held in the steady hands of a brilliant writer.
What I found impressive was how Bakic keeps these stories engaging and accessible even if she doesn’t always resolve the character’s sense of confusion or dislocation ... What’s striking about the collection is Bakic’s devotion to the written word as an art-form and a creative force ... Although these stories were published a few years ago, there’s an immediacy to Bakic’s offbeat worldview, sometimes strange and surreal, sometimes terrifying and upsetting, that pairs perfectly with the madness of the current political moment. Kudos then to Feminist Press and Jennifer Zoble for publishing and translating these wonderful, surprising stories. I hope we get to see more of Asja Bakic’s work in English. I’ll certainly be reading it.
... teems with the oddball narratives of George Saunders, the eerie atmosphere of Edgar Allan Poe, and the feminist intellect of Marge Piercy ... Told in a straightforward manner that transports speculative fiction into almost realist territory, Bakic’s collection imaginatively and strikingly examines sci-fi tropes from not only the point of view of women, but also from the voice of an effortlessly gifted writer whose future is much brighter than that of those depicted in her stories.