Hosted by Jay @ Bibliophilopolis
“The Others” by Joyce Carol Oates
Card picked: Ace of Hearts
From: Masterpieces of Terror and the Unknown, edited by Marvin Kaye
Thoughts: One day, when Spence leaves work early—a deviation from his routine—he spots someone in the passing crowd that he thinks he recognizes. It isn’t until later that he realizes that the stranger looked like his cousin Sandy who has been dead for twenty years. As Spence finds himself late in a line or detouring through the underground on a stormy day, he sees others that he recognizes, but are dead. Who are they? What are they? Or is Spence going insane?
It occurred to me as I read “The Others” that I don’t really know what it’s like to think I recognize someone, but not know from where. Somewhat face blind, I have the opposite problem: not recognizing people I’ve met. And to run into someone from twenty years ago? I guess I have fodder for my own set of unsettling stories.
About the Author: Editor Martin Kaye in the introduction to this story, the first of the anthology:
The condescending attitude of certain critics and academics toward imaginative literature is exasperating. The significant prosodists who have assayed fantasy is virtually a roll call of Western belles lettres… To this list may now be added Joyce Carol Oates.