Sunday, May 5, 2019

Gremlin, by Carrie Vaughn

★★★★☆ Sweeping, Triumphant, Moving

(Epic Military SF) A Russian fighter pilot in the battle of Stalingrad comes back from a mission to find a wounded alien stuck under the wing of her airplane. (22,238 words; Time: 1h:14m)

Recommended By: πŸ‘RSR+1 πŸ‘STomaino+1 (Q&A)

"Gremlin," by (edited by Sheila Williams), appeared in issue 05-06|19, published on by .

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

Review: 2019.239 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: There are really three stories here spanning centuries, but the overarching story is how Natalia’s descendants returned Drook to his people.

Drook is well named; he is a good friend to Natalia, to Elena, and, presumably, to many generations of their descendants. He returns Natalia’s kindness to him a hundred times over, and he well deserves Ellie’s efforts to find his home and take him there.

For me, the most moving scene in the book is where Drook saves Elena by holding her plane together long enough for her to land it at her base. I’m not quite sure why that one had more punch than the final scene, though.

Con: Why is Drook only passed to female family members? That seemed contrived.

It was also hard to believe that no one ever took Drook to be examined by scientists, who might have deciphered it’s language much earlier.

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1 comment (may contain spoilers):

  1. I love this one. 4 1/2 stars from me. This is going on my Hugo list.

    I would love to see more Drook stories. The potential is there, as this starting story establishes that Drook has been on Earth with generations of the same family.

    This is free as a PDF. RSR has a link to it, but you need to access it via the Locus List page of RSR, under Novella. Just click the title "Gremlin". I've added it below.