“Set in an apocalyptic world in which the government battles “Justice Gang” lynch mobs in the wake of a series of terrible terrorist attacks, this story is a brilliant meditation upon the role of magical thinking in our political culture. “Tu Sufrimento Shall Protect Us” explores the idea that, in times of stress, humans retreat into atavistic beliefs about the need for pain and purification….Rivera asks: Is the acceptance of torture a result of ignorance or the product of superstition? Do we send people to be tortured because we genuinely believe that this is a reliable means of extracting intelligence or is it because we think that as long as someone out there is suffering for us, we will be safe? Rivera asks this question through the lens of South American culture, the story is elegantly written, beautifully atmospheric and filled with some wonderful local colour. “Tu Sufrimento Shall Protect Us” is not only the strongest story in the issue, it is also one of the most atmospheric, disturbing and thought-provoking short stories I have ever encountered. If Rivera’s work does not get picked up by one of the Year’s Best anthologies then there really is no justice in the world.”
(Hence the need for Justice Gangs. ) Anyhow, that’s only an excerpt of the thorough and thoughtful (and quite flattering) review. You can read the whole thing here.
And in another review, Tangent Online “predicts that this is the story from this issue that will stick with you the longest. Tight, fast, dramatic, and tortuous.” Cool!
Finally, Colin Harvey at Suite 101 calls it “the best story in the issue” and writes: “Set in a near future New York in a world of ‘proxy wars’ and nuclear-armed terroristas, Rivera neatly reworks the classic scapegoat theme while peppering his narrative with Spanish. Outstanding.” Thanks, Colin!