Now 2024 Previous Articles Road Essays Road Reviews Author Black Authors Title Source Age Genre Series Format Inclusivity LGBTA+ Artwork WIP

Recent posts

Month in review

Book Reviews:

All-of-a-Kind Family Uptown by Sydney Taylor
Bleach Volume 10 by Tite Kubo
Blood Matters by Masha Gessen
Burnt Bread and Chutney by Carmit Delman
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang by Ian Flemming
The Company of Cats by Michael J. Rosen
Crispin: The Cross of Lead by Avi
Daisy Says Coo by Jane Simmons
Dance Hall of the Dead by Tony Hillerman
The Dispossessed by Ursula K. LeGuin
Doggies by Sandra Boynton
Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
Fast Profits in Hard Times by Jordan E. Goodman
First Editions by James Stoddard
Five Little Ducks by Dan Yaccarino
Five Thrillers by Robert Reed
The Fountain of Neptune by Kate Wilhelm
The 400-Million-Year Itch by Steven Utley
Grace's Letter to Lincoln by Peter and Connie Roop
Gregory III by Marc Hempel
The Gulls of the Edmund Fitzgerald by Tres Seymour
The Heart of the Matter by Graham Greene
The House on the Strand by Daphne du Maurier
How Do You Go the Bathroom in Space by William R. Pogue
Immortal Snake by Rachel Pollack
In an Instant by Lee and Bob Woodruff
It's Spring by Samantha Berger and Pamela Chanko
Jenny Archer to the Rescue by Ellen Conford
Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus by Barbara Park
Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson
The Lion's Own Story by Crockett Johnson
London Orbital by Iain Sinclair
My Ántonia by Willa Cather
The Nocturnal Adventure of Dr. O and Mr. D by Tim Sullivan
Oh Boy, Boston! by Patricia Reilly Giff
The Other Log of Phileas Fogg by Philip José Farmer
Rebecca's Locket by S. L. Gilbow
Render Unto Caesar by Kevin N. Haw
Reunion by Robert Reed
Snakes by Adrienne Mason
Tales of Oliver Pig by Jean Van Leeuwen and Arnold Lobel
Test-Drive Your Dream Job by Brian Kurth
There's No Such Place as Far Away by Richard Bach
A Traveller in Time by Alison Uttley
The Unspeakable by Charles L. Calia
The Willowdale Handcar by Edward Gorey
Who Stole the Wizard of Oz? by Avi
Z for Zachariah by Robert C. O'Brien

Flu and Stuff
Have You Brushed Your Fish Today?

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

Beat the Backlist 2024

Ozathon: 12/2023-01/2025

Canadian Book Challenge: 2023-2024

Chicken Prints
Paintings and Postcards

Privacy policy

This blog does not collect personal data. It doesn't set cookies. Email addresses are used to respond to comments or "contact us" messages and then deleted.

The 400-Million-Year Itch: 04/13/08

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction

The April issue of the Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction ends on a time travel story that focuses on the universal search for happiness. The story is called "The 400-Million-Year Itch" and is another of Steven Utley's "Silurian Tales."

In "The 400-Million-Year Itch", a scientist known only by her first name, Amy, recounts her work with a more famous scientist, Cutsinger. The interviewer wants to know about the exotic locations and creatures she encountered while working on and around Gondwana. What she recounts instead is how mundane even the exotic can be because people are people after all and a job is a job.

The trip that Amy recounts was one shared with a Navy chaplin, a science fiction writer, a volcanologist, Cutsinger and of course the crew. Throughout the trip Amy feels as if she is seen only as an extension of Cutsinger, nothing more than a glorified assistant.

Amy's professional relationship with Cutsinger is my one quibble with an otherwise enjoyable story. If she were a graduate student during the trip then things make sense. The end of the story where she claims to have written most of Cutsinger's autobiography though brings this thesis into question. If she has her own career in whatever her field is, it's unlikely that she would have remained Cutsinger's "assistant" for all these years.

Read the reviews at Spiral Galaxy Reviews, Eyrie.

For more on the story please see the interview posted the magazine's blog. To learn more about the author, please see his website.

This concludes the reviews from the April issue. Here are all the stories reviewed from this issue:

Comments (0)

Lab puppy
Email (won't be posted):
Blog URL:

Twitter Tumblr Mastadon Flickr Facebook Facebook Contact me

1997-2024 Sarah Sammis