Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Algis Budrys' "The Peasant Girl" (as by Paul Janvier) (short story, free)

One of the illustration accompanying the publication in Astounding magazine, British edition, of short story The Peasant Girl by Algis Budrys. Image shows the central character receiving at his home his estranged & married sister with her baby boy, her husbad, and her father in law.
Not sure why I liked it - I would like to say the plot didn't do much for me, but it sure kept my attention & I finished it in a single sitting.

Story summary.

Mankind has split into two races - ordinary humans, & a new apparently far superior race of supermen - telepathic, able to change shape of things by thought, able to move by thought, etc. They seem to control ordinary humans' lives.

One day, Dorothy, the little sister of Henry Spar, a small town "cabinetmaker", vanished. Apparently kidnapped by one of the supermen, something that seems to happen fairly regularly, with ordinary men resigned to this fate. But Henry goes looking for his sister...

I found the ending too antithetical to rest of the story, supermen to whom ordinary men are supermen, in some sense...

Fact sheet.

First published: Astounding, June 1956.
Download full text as part of scans of Astounding (British Edition), November 1956.
Rating: B.
Among the stories from Astounding/Analog issues edited by John Campbell.
Related: Stories of Algis Budrys.


Larry said...

Ive enjoyed a couple of his stories, Citadel was one.
Ever seen a film called Who? That was based on one of his novels!

Tinkoo said...

Only one of his stories I've liked so far is the novel "Rogue Moon". I've generally found his short fiction rather minor & inconsequential.

I haven't seen "Who?", but might look up now. Thanks.

Larry said...

Have a look here:

Tinkoo said...

I've read both the stories.