“The Sounds of Old Earth” has been nominated for a Nebula Award for Best Short Story. Voting is open to members of SFWA.
The story has also been selected for the 2013 Locus Recommended Reading List. For the Locus Poll, anyone can vote for their favorite works in several categories.
Some selected reviews of “The Sounds of Old Earth”
“This is a powerful story that is both tragic & hopeful–unexpectedly. And beautifully written. Thank you for sharing it.” — Joyce Carol Oates
“This is gorgeous, melancholy, and heartbreaking. I highly rec it (I cried through most of it).” — Ellen Datlow
“The best story in the January issue…the story is nicely felt and nicely characterized, and the frog pond that the old man has nurtured for decades and is reluctant to abandon to its fate is nicely symbolic of all the things about Old Earth that are being callously lost in the process.” — Gardner Dozois for Locus
“The frog pond is an idyllic and well-chosen symbol, as amphibians are among the most sensitive creatures to environmental degradation. The conclusion is heartwarming.” –Lois Tilton for Locus Online
“‘The Sounds of Old Earth’ by Matthew Kressel is as heartbreaking as it is heartwarming, which is perhaps exactly what makes it the flawlessly balanced tale that it is.” – SkyBoat Media
“That connection with the past and with life…is why we, the audience become concerned. If human life beyond Old Earth has any hope of retaining its unique identity—retaining what we gained from Old Earth—we will need as many people like Abner as possible.” — Samuel X. Brase for Cosmic Vinegar (in-depth review here).
“The story asks if we could give up this world to feed the birth of another, or whether we would rather hang about until this one shrivels and dies. The descriptions are great and the sentiment feels real.” — Jimmy Rogers for Synthetic Voices
“Matthew Kressel’s short story visits the small tragedies and triumphs that make up a life and in the process presents a touching narrative on what it is that makes a home.” — Carl V. Anderson for Stainless Steel Droppings (in-depth review here).
“I will not reveal the ending, only to say that it brought tears to my eyes. Obviously, I liked this story.” — Sam Tomaino for SFRevu
“I loved this piece for its perspective of home and place, and the idea of how those things form identity. Solid writing. Highly recommended.” — Ron Collins for Typosphere