Wednesday, December 26, 2018

The Devil's Whatever, by Andy Duncan

★★★☆☆ Average

(Folktale) This is the story of how Petey was cursed to travel among all the places in America named for the Devil and reenact the tales of how they got their names and how Perleen tried to save him. (12,352 words; Time: 41m)

Recommended By: πŸ‘RHorton.r+1 (Q&A)

"The Devil's Whatever," by (edited by Gardner Dozois), appeared in (RSR review), published on by .

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

Review: 2018.650 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: As far as deal-with-the-devil stories go, this one is a little different in that Petey didn’t really do anything to deserve the curse; the Devil just did it to him. He and Pearleen work together to get him free of it, and that’s a little different too.

The best part, for me, was the description of how Pearleen rode in the Devil’s car with the Devil’s driver and a hound from Hell—none of whom was quite as expected.

Con: The fight with the Devil isn’t much of a contest; they basically just outrun him on his own horse, and he gives up. There’s no price to winning and no lesson learned (by anyone). But the worst problem is that it’s too long and gets dull.

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Andy Duncan Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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