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Bewildering Stories

Challenge 465

So Far, So Fast

  1. In Faith H. Goble’s “Birdland,” Michael’s injury causes him to cease chanelling 1950’s television shows and start rebroadcasting late-20th century “hate radio.” What seems to be happening outside of Michael’s hospital room?

  2. Is Abha Iyengar’s “Birthing the Blue” a fable?

  3. Is Wallace W. Cass’s “Retrograde” a complete story or the opening chapters in a larger story?

  4. In Julie Wornan’s “Cat Nap”:

    1. At one point, Mishkuli sleeps 25 hours in one day. In view of the Relativisitic effects of space travel — disregarding its absence in the story — what must happen to allow Mishkuli’s clock to gain one hour over Bartmeyer’s? Assume no change from Standard Time to Daylight Savings Time.

    2. In Ray Cummings’ The Girl in the Golden Atom, chapter 5:

      The Big Business Man smiled. “Time,” he said, “is what keeps everything from happening at once.”

      Ray Cummings’ novel dates from 1919. Did he originate the aphorism or might he have borrowed it from another source?

  5. In euhal allen’s The Bridge: a New Beginning, chapter 2, part 3, Martini has doubts about Melichson’s research. Is that sufficient to warrant his opposing Katia Shapirov’s bequest to the university? Does Martini have any particular reason to want to get rid of Melichson?

  6. In Bill Bowler’s The Shepherd of Zakhbaal:

    1. Omar learns that Lyla is from Earth and speaks English. He’s appropriately surprised. What might the reader expect Omar to do immediately?

    2. Does Omar know that the villagers do not have a written language or does he assume they don’t? Why does Omar bother to create writing anyway?

    3. Why is Omar surprised that Tiger rests his head in Lyla’s lap?

    4. Who do you suppose the “Shepherd of Zakhbaal” is? What does his possible identity imply about the development of interstellar travel in the 18 months since Omar left Earth?

    5. Did Omar meet Lyla before leaving Earth? What makes it seem unlikely that he did?

Responses welcome!

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