The Martian in the WoodThe Martian in the Wood by Stephen Baxter
My rating: 3/5 cats
One StarOne StarOne Star

These are uneasy places to visit, dense dark woods uncut and untamed, the trees growing too thickly, the ground choked by leaf litter and lichen and moss, the space itself lightless and cramped where you lose your bearings within a few yards of entering. Places always associated with dread and hauntings and mystery.

because the free tor shorts aren’t dropping with the same frequency as they used to (which is totally understandable and this is not a complaint), i’ve had to dig a little deeper each week to find one that i haven’t read, and more often than not lately i end up reading one that i’ve considered and rejected at least once in the past.

this is one of those.

and it is a very well-written story, but it is not a karen-kind of story. i thought it had a chance – it’s a post-The War of the Worlds/pre-The Massacre of Mankind tale, so i thought i could read it in richard burton’s voice (which i did) and insert all kinds of crazy 70’s synth noises in my head (which i did) and it would be like when i was little and listening to the whole jeff wayne musical on my dad’s gigantic headphones, kicking my feet and being adorable.

although i was likely still adorable when i was reading this, it was not as much fun for me. it was much longer than i thought it would be (twss) and it’s a very sloooooowprose story, in keeping with the style of the h.g. wells original. i had not set aside enough time to read something so long and slow, so i had to break it into two readings.

the story is good, but that stiff, olde-timey SF just is not my jam. also, whether it was because i was splitting it up into two reading sessions or because i was just not into the story and was losing focus, i didn’t really understand all of what was going on. but i can tell that if i DID like this kind of storytelling, i WOULD have understood and enjoyed it.

but now i gotta go listen to some triumphant synthesizers and zithers and justin haywards.

dunh dunh DUNH! (doodly doodly) dunh dunh DUNH! (doo dee! doo dee! doo dee doo deeeeeee!!!!)

read it for yourself here:…

read my reviews on goodreads

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