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Bewildering Stories

Challenge 275

Little Faith

  1. In chapter 8 of Crystalwizard’s Spellbound:

    1. Is Lynda’s brawling with drunken frat boys realistic?
    2. What mental image of Lynda’s physique and strength might the brawl suggest? Does it match the image of the cover art in chapter 6?
    3. Is there anything in Lynda’s past that might explain her somewhat strained relationship with men?
  2. In Eric Kregel’s “The Shadow of Geordie Harris”:

    1. The werewolf has some pet peeves, especially about health insurance. Why is the werewolf’s concern more appropriate to the U.S.A. than to Canada?
    2. Geordie Harris has a very sinister anxiety about the werewolf. Since the werewolf is Geordie’s alter ego, how does his fear resemble the premise of Sarah Hilary’s “Black Box”?
    3. Rewrite “Geordie Harris” as a comedy or a tragedy.
  3. In Shannon J. Prince’s “As Beautiful as Fish in a Dream:

    1. What is the basic story outline?
    2. What is the function of part 3? How well do you think it fits with the other three parts?
    3. How does the author use olfactory and tactile imagery?
  4. Clyde Andrews’ “First Transition”:

    1. For readers of what age does the story seem to be intended?
    2. Why does the spaceship depend on a courier to carry information?
    3. To what extent does the “happy ending” depend on an accident?
    4. What is the boy’s emotional reaction to violence and death?
  5. The moral of Tim Simmons’ “Faith Awakening” is encoded in a reverse acrostic. Read the first word of each paragraph, from the last to the first.

    1. At about what age do children — or adults — normally begin to realize that Santa Claus is a metaphor?
    2. Adopted or foster children — especially but not exclusively when they are young — may have emotions about their “birth parents” ranging from rejection to indifference to curiosity to fear of abandonment. “Faith Awakening” implies that those emotions are identical in cause and effect to those of religious faith. Do you agree?
    3. Is it plausible that Faith never mentions her mother?
    4. Uncle Paul never tells Faith the truth, even when she turns 13. Does the allegory justify Uncle Paul’s reticence?
    5. Who is really Faith’s “daddy”? Answer here. Why does she not come to that realization? What do her fixation and failure imply about her character? Is she faithful or merely ungrateful?
    6. How does “Faith Awakening” differ from Carmen Ruggero’s “I Shall Weep No More”?
  6. In Sarah Hilary’s “Black Box,” the camera is an analogue of memory, and Toby Oliver’s snapshots of himself as a child are memories. Toby is not literally dead, but how is he figuratively dead? And why?

  7. What is the function — besides comic relief — of the comic relief characters in Oonah V Joslin’s “Trip to Tangier”?

Responses welcome!

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