This story is translated from Chinese by Andy Dudak and as the title indicates, it is a clever reiteration on the concept of being stuck in a daily time loop like the movie Groundhog Day.

The story follows three people who have been stuck in the same day for years, just like Phil in Groundhog Day. The rest of the world doesn’t seem to be aware of this, but they are trying to figure out what is going on and how to escape their eternal time loop. It reminded me a bit of Greg Egan’s “Solidity” with how the they apply deductive reasoning to this very strange situation they find themselves in. Their theories mostly revolve around God-like aliens playing tricks on them or Matrix-like computer-simulation. They have tried various deeds such and killing themselves to no avail.

I am sure the ending will be divisive whether it is great or unfair among readers, but I liked it. In general, it seems like Chinese stories like this that we see translated into English, are not afraid of reiterating older concepts from the genre and putting them into a new re-imagined setting. Which is just great to see that combination of respecting the inspiration while making something new and original.

Read in Clarkesworld December 2023
Rating: 4