8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 31 December 2008
I recently purchased this collection of stories, never having heard of walter m miller. I was transported back to my youth when I had read A.E Van Vogt. The excitement the thrills but above all the the heart and compassion at the centre of these stories. The boy travelling to the future to find a cure for his disease..... a simple yet original idea, but it is the characters so movingly adumbrated which ultimately turns this story from an average one to a great one. All these stories possess a very real and immediate quality as well as having great science fiction ideas ; dark benediction is probably the best short story I have Read, enjoy.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 24 February 2010
I've been happily working my way systematically through the Sci-Fi Masterworks series and this is one of the best: a collection of short stories that hook you within three pages and leave you with the wistful desire that these had been expanded into full novels. The writing style is very comfortable and allows you to turn the pages at a ferocious rate, only to find yourself coming back to re-read over again: you'll find yourself chewing over the "what-if's" for each of these shorts for weeks to come.
Treat yourself. I promise you'll read it twice within a week, then lend it out just to have someone to discuss it with!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 17 November 2009
I've read countless Sci-fi books, but when it comes to short stories I've usually read Philip K. Dick. Unlike Dick's work, the characters in these stories don't all have hang ups about women, and things make sense (not to say I don't like Phil's stories).
Of course, like any collection of short stories, some hit the mark and others fall wide. But more often than not the stories in this collection are interesting, vivid, and different enough to set them apart. I enjoyed reading through a few at a time with a cup of rosy, and for the money, it's definitely worth a punt if you're not sure.
on 2 October 2011
The best stories in this collection go beyond most sf in exploring very human (some would say religious) themes such as sacrifice, submission and redemption; it's these tales that highlight Miller's real literary gifts. On the other hand about a third of the volume consists of very mediocre pulp fare; stories that begin with an intriguing premise or arresting image but quickly descend into formulaic boy meets girl chase narratives. Fine for the '50s magazines but they haven't aged at all well.
A mixed bag but well worth the money.
on 24 October 2009
This was my first encounter with Walter Miller, and reading this collection of short stories re-kindled my early fascination with the genre. Most if not all the stories involve territorial disputes of one sort or another, and remind us - if reminder is necessary - of the terrible consequences of such disputes in a bleak future in which wisdom and compassion are conspicuous by their absence. Excellent, gripping read.