I’ve got a complete set of notes about the story in my story notes section, for those who’ve read it and are hungry to know more, because, believe it or not, there’s a ton of historical material in here… plus some thoughts about what I was attempting to do in the story, and why. But if you haven’t read the story yet, I recommend you wait to read the notes. I can sum up the story this way:
A lot can happen during a 1929 train ride from Kansas City to Chicago… especially when there’s a sentient alien artifact on board.
If you’d like a ticket for that train ride, the magazine should be on newsstands now. (Or you can get a copy of the digital edition online: Asimov’s has more information about where on their site.)
And yeah, it’s another jazz SF story, though in a different era and universe than my earlier jazz story that was my debut in Asimov’s.