Friday, April 27, 2018

The Wandering Warriors, by Rick Wilber and Alan Smale

★★☆☆☆ Not Recommended

(Time Travel) A 1950s semi-pro baseball team loses their way in Illinois one dark night and find themselves in ancient Rome, where the empress wants them to play—for higher stakes than usual. (33,243 words; Time: 1h:50m)

If you really like baseball this may be a much better story for you

"The Wandering Warriors," by and (edited by Sheila Williams), appeared in issue 05-06|18, published on by .

Mini-Review (click to view--possible spoilers)

Pro: The professor gets them out of their predicament, Quentin plays the game of his life, and Julia Domna escapes alive and finds a career in the 20th Century as a baseball player.

Con: Baseball bores me to tears, and I found I couldn’t believe a crowd of Romans would sit still to watch it. Nor that a Roman Emperor—much less Caracalla—would participate in it. I simply couldn’t sustain disbelief, and between those two problems, it was a long, unpleasant read for me.

Other Reviews: Search Web, Browse Review Sites (Issue 05-06|18)
Rick Wilber Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline
Alan Smale Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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2 comments (may contain spoilers):

  1. I agree with you about the baseball element of the story being an odd choice for ancient Rome, but what I really liked about this story, and what kept me reading it, was the dynamic of the baseball team itself. I also really liked the setting of the story in the 1940s during WWII, which I felt added a deeper layer of meaning.

    1. Are you sure it was in the 1940s? I thought it was the 1950s.

      I liked the dynamic of the baseball team too, plus I liked the way they interacted with the gladiators. My problem was just that every few pages, I'd go "No way would this happen!" at one thing or another.