In 2016, after the surprise victory of the Orange Interloper, I was invited to participate in a Donald Trump sci-fi anthology by fellow writer George Donnelly. I had fun writing my contribution, though the majority of the stories therein were unmistakably anti-Trump in tone. MAGA 2020 & Beyond, published in 2017 by Superversive Press, is the other side of the coin. It’s an unabashedly pro-Trump sci-fi anthology edited by Jason Rennie, Dawn Witzke, and Marina Fontaine.
As I’ve noted in previous reviews, in any story collection the quality often varies greatly between entries. The stories in MAGA 2020 varied even more than most, probably because they drew from the more limited field of right-leaning writers. Personally, I believe the writing community is not as uniformly leftist as it seems. There’s a tremendous amount of peer pressure for mainstream writers to toe the progressive line. The book’s contributors are folks who defy this convention and I salute them for that.
There were a number of stories I particularly enjoyed, including Jon Del Arroz’s piece “Winning is What We Do” in which Barron Trump field tests experimental battle suit. Another was “Auntie’s Magnificent Bricks” by Christopher Chase, a humorous peek into a prosperous post-Trump future. In it, a commemorative parade features marchers dressed as “Based Stickman” and Pepe the Frog, which I found to be hilarious.
Sandor Novak’s “Infected,” about a disease that forces people to tell the truth, was also quite funny. Among other things, the honesty virus gives rise to some very un-PC comments about a certain “Religion of Peace” whose adherents tend to be rather humorless. I give the publisher kudos for their bravery. Molly Pitcher’s “The New Wall,” about the Border Patrol fighting terrorist “Antina” cells from Canada, showed great promise but didn’t have end with the big confrontation I was hoping for. On the more fanciful side, “Mad Dog Moon” by Declan Finn features Secretary of Defense James Mattis in a “war on terror” scenario that is so ludicrously over-the-top that it ends up being awesome.
The book has many other entries, including a few essays, such as Ivan Throne of “Dark Triad” fame reflecting on Trump’s greatness in his piece “Father Cinncinatus.” Except for Milo Yiannopoulos’ introduction (I admit I have a man-crush on the Dangerous One), I found the essays to be unimpressive.
I recommend MAGA 2020 & Beyond for right-leaning readers or for anyone with a sense of humor who isn’t easily “triggered.” It’s an interesting collection, though not as “big league” as I’d hoped. I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars.
Also, check out the “other” Trump anthology, Steaks, Walls, and Dossiers, with a contribution by Yours Truly.