Tuesday, January 8, 2019

The Washer from the Ford, by Sean McMullen

★★★☆☆ A Nice Start

(Modern Fantasy) Peter witnesses a brutal murder and is shocked to see someone washing the dead woman’s clothes just an hour after the police took them away. He doesn’t know it, but he has a curse, and she has a gift for him. (7,426 words; Time: 24m)

Recommended By: πŸ‘STomaino+1 (Q&A)

"The Washer from the Ford," by (edited by C.C. Finlay), appeared in issue 01-02|19, published on by .

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

Review: 2019.040 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: The best part about this story is the casual way Peter responds to his gift. At every step of the experience, he’s calm, collected, and scientific. The Bean Nighe keeps expecting him to make foolish choices—like the characters in most fairy tales—but, except for his failure to make good use of his three questions, he makes sensible choices and gets reasonable results.

At the end, it seems that he’s found a new career (or at least a new avocation): fighting the fey establishment.

Con: This feels like the setup for a longer story. This was interesting, but not a lot has actually happened beyond setting up a much more interesting conflict.

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4 comments (may contain spoilers):

  1. Hmm, I didn't think about the possibility of further stories with this protagonist, but I'd definitely like it!

    1. So often I find myself giving three stars to a story and yet I'd eagerly buy a novel that extended the story. Hence the pitch "a nice start" with the 3-star rating, to distinguish it from a merely mediocre 3-star story.

  2. Author's website:


  3. This is a very good 3-star story. Almost a 4-star from me.

    Yes - I would be happy to read more stories with this character in it. Interesting angle - fey updating themselves and migrating in the modern world.