Sunday, August 11, 2019

Three Variations on a Theme of Imperial Attire, by E. Lily Yu


(Fairy Tale) In which three stories based on the Emperor’s New Clothes explore modern politics. (3,544 words; Time: 11m)

"Three Variations on a Theme of Imperial Attire," by (edited by Nisi Shawl), appeared in (RSR review), published on by .

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

Review: 2019.270 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: Obviously this plays with the Hans Christian Anderson story, “The Emperor’s New Clothes.”

Con: The first variation doesn’t even work because it omits the detail that unfit people couldn’t see the clothes. As presented in this version, the Emperor would have immediately said, “Hey, there’s nothing here!”

The second is best described by the story itself: “Heavy-handed, on the nose. . . it’s hardly even a story.”

The third is just dull. The political message is really obvious, and there’s nothing else here.

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