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Friday, November 29, 2013

"Vandoise and the Bone Monster" by Alex Irvine

Cover story for Fantasy and Science Fiction. Collected in Unintended Consequences.  Nominated for Locus and International Horror Guild Awards.

Purty nifty tale.  Vandoise, an early fossil-hunter back in the Pre-Civil War days of the fossil wars where scientists tried to trick each other, witnesses the creation of a bone monster--an old dinosaur skeleton comes to life.  It kills everything around that moves, so that they have to stand still--at least during those times it can see well: twilight and dawn.  After awhile though, a hundred years or so, Vandoise tired of dodging the best and keeps asking different people to blow him and the beast up.

Way cool story.  The nested story-structure is a little less clear despite the reread.  Apparently in hearing the tale, listeners become a part of the story, culpable of its sins--torchbearers to pass on the tales.  As I love such structures, it's disappointing it wasn't more developed.

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