Daily Archives: December 27, 2014

Deal Me In, Week 52 ~ “Just Like Normal People”

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Hosted by Jay @ Bibliophilopolis

“Just Like Normal People” by Kevin J. Anderson

Card picked: Six of Clubs

From: David Copperfield’s Tales of the Impossible

Thoughts:

After years of producing nothing but horrors as crops, the farmer and his family had split up and fled Wisconsin in their separate directions, abandoning the land to seek a normal farm and a normal life.

For a pittance, Collier & Black’s Traveling Circus and Sideshows had rented one of the vacant fields.

Scarecrow and Raven are two of the freaks in the sideshow. Scarecrow is tired of being stared at, laughed at, and ridiculed by normal people. With Raven in tow, he takes a break from the midway to wander the strange fields they’ve set up in and visit the nearby town of Tucker’s Grove. The first night of their sabbatical, the duo sleeps in a barn where Scarecrow finds a strange artifact. The next day, a Sunday, Scarecrow is emboldened by the sign hanging outside the Methodist church: All Welcome! Predictably, he finds that this is a less than genuine invitation and he decides to give the church a very special donation…

Scarecrow and Raven are great characters and Scarecrow’s dream in the barn of being a blond, tan farmer and upstanding member of a community is rather sad. Unfortunately, the story does get a tad preachy, even for a narrative with a preacher in it. In his introduction, Copperfield likens it to a Bradbury story (rather than the SF tale that one might expect from Anderson). While it definitely has some Bradbury flavor, it lacks a light touch.

About the Author: There was a time in the late 80s and early 90s when…there wasn’t much Star Wars. Kevin J. Anderson was in the vanguard of the Star Wars resurgence and is now pretty widely know for collaborating with Brian Herbert of further Dune novels.

And that’s it for Deal Me In 2014!

I’ve really enjoyed the challenge and have met some excellent bloggers over the past year. Jay just posted the details and signup for Deal Me In 2015 and I am so there. Got anthologies you want to get through? A growing queue of classic short stories that are “must reads”? Just want to read a little every week? Join us!