Friday, December 7, 2018

Girls Who Do Not Drown, by A.C. Buchanan

★★★☆☆ Average

(Fantasy Horror) Everyone knows the glashtyn carry girls to drown in the sea, but Alice is surprised when one approaches her, since no one knows she’s a girl. (2,872 words; Time: 09m)

"Girls Who Do Not Drown," by (edited by Jason Sizemore), appeared in issue 115, published on .

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

Review: 2018.694 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: The glashtyn is a creature from Manx folklore, so we can guess that the story takes place on the Isle of Man. In this story, “going to sea” seems to represent simply leaving home. Many leave. Some come back changed. Some drown.

Alice desperately fears people learning she’s trans. When the glashtyn approaches her, she thinks that’ll spill her secret to everyone, since everyone knows they only approach girls. So she swims out to sea on her own; if she’s going to drown, at least she’ll do it on her own terms. But, miraculously, the creature picks her up, gives her a ride, and brings her back.

She’s not physically changed, but everyone sees her as she really is now, and she's strong enough to stand up to them. Others who either only just realized they were girls or who’d been keeping it a secret feel brave enough to join her.

Con: I don’t see why the glashtyn decided to help her out. How did she earn this boon? And, on a symbolic level, what does it stand for?

Other Reviews: Search Web, Browse Review Sites (Issue 115)
A.C. Buchanan Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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