The ED SF Project

The Ellen Datlow/SCI FICTION Project, that is. We're showing the love for five and a half years of great short fiction, and we need your help! We've got over 300 stories to cover, so if you're a person who loves short speculative fiction, we want you. Go here to read the list and add your voice.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

"The Dragons of Summer Gulch" by Robert Reed: An Appreciation by Sarah Prineas

Robert Reed's "The Dragons of Summer Gulch"

Okay, I admit it. I hadn't read this story before choosing it for the ED project, and I chose it because it had the word 'dragons' in the title. Because fantasy's all about the dragons; for me, dragons represent the awesome, airborne, sense-of-wonder possible-impossibility of the fantastic. How do they manage to fly, anyway?

Here's what I liked about this story: the happy camels on leashes. The moron-genius Manmark who says, "And then my father died, and I took my inheritance, deciding to apply my wealth and genius in the pursuit of great things." The Wild West setting turned askew. The best locomotive available on short notice. The sly aboriginal girl's story-within-a-story. The eighth dragon. Everything else dragon: the fossils, the eggs, the gold-silver-platinum spleens, the Claws of God.

So obviously, this is not a review or a critique, but an appreciation of the sheer fantastical wonderfulness of this story. It's big, it's not very aerodynamic, but holy cow, it flies.

Link to story.


Anonymous John B said...

I saw your comment on my appreciation so decided to go read your ED Appreciation. Looks like I have another story to read. Dragons with an Old West flavor? Who could resist

John B

9:28 AM  

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