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What Doctor Gottlieb Saw
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What Doctor Gottlieb Saw (Milkweed Triptych 0.5)

4.06 of 5 stars 4.06  ·  rating details  ·  232 ratings  ·  23 reviews

Gretel has wires in her head. Gretel likes to pick wildflowers. Gretel is one of the subjects on the farm, and she is Doctor Gottlieb's responsibility, but she knows something she isn't telling -- and if Doctor Gottlieb doesn't figure it out, it may be his body in a ditch next. This story is set in the world of Ian Tregillis's Milkweed series, which began with Bitter Seeds
ebook, 32 pages
Published February 1st 2011 by Tor Books (first published June 2010)
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What Doctor Gottlieb saw is very much an introduction to Gretel. If you have read Bitter Seeds you’ll know that Gretel is probably the most dangerous of all the characters. Even before she was experimented on she wasn’t right, the farm merely gave her the talent to be very very good at being bad.

Dr. Gottlieb works on the farm, he is pretty much the farm’s shrink. Everyone needs a bit of help coping with what is going on there, but Gretel is really starting to come into her own her and Gottlieb i
Brian Sealey
Ian Tregillis is one of my favorite new authors. "Bitter Seeds" and "The Coldest War" are a brilliant blend of science fiction, alternate history, and horror, and I cannot wait for the third book in the series (especially after the stunning cliffhanger at the end of "The Coldest War") in the series. Tregillis writes with a cruel fluency, so that you feel every horror like a punch in the gut. Imagine Highsmith's brutally casual depiction of sociopathy combined with Lovecraft's ability to show the ...more
MB Taylor
Interesting read. Finished reading Bitter Seeds Friday night and read this short story early Sunday morning. Both are pretty good, and share common characters. The time-lines of the two overlap, with “What Doctor Gottlieb Saw” happening before most of Bitter Seeds, but I think I’m glad I read Bitter Seeds first. I think reading “What Doctor Gottlieb Saw” first would have spoiled some of my enjoyment of learning slowly about some of the characters, Gretel in particular.

(view spoiler)
Dan Campos
Terminando Something More than Night decidí aventarme esta narración más corta, ubicada en el universo de la trilogía anterior de Tregillis. Es un cuento que ocurre antes de que inicien los mismos libros, en donde empezamos a ver la capacidad de reciocinio y planeación de una Gretel que todavía no muestra el cobre.

La historia empieza con Gretel preguntándole a Gottlieb si se podía matar a dios. La pregunta busca implicaciones sobre lo posible o lo imposible, aunque la respuesta dada por Gottlie
Paul Genesse
Awesome little short story that goes along with Bitter Seeds.

I love the opening:

"Do you suppose it's possible to murder God?"

Gretel was Gottlieb's most troubling patient. She was also, he feared, quite mad.

Such a great opening and the story goes along with Bitter Seeds, but I think it should be read after you read Bitter Seeds. You can read it first, but I think it would mean much more if you read it afterward. The story does shed some light on events in Bitter Seeds, like how Klaus lost part o
Kristýna Obrdlíková
Je tam několik hodně silných klišé, ale téma je chycené bezrozporně a elegantně. A to myslím nebylo vůbec jednoduché. Skvělé rámování, různorodé a uvěřitelné postavy. Neměla jsem ráda ani jednu z nich. :-)
Domāju, ka tas ir "Rūgtajās sēklās" neiekļauts gabals, bet nē. Tomēr tik un tā forši bija pārlasīt. Spēcīgs fragments un var dot apjausmu vai gribas izlasīt visu grāmatu.
Yet again, Tregillis's intricate storytelling took me by surprise and left me awestruck and a little breathless. One word: Gretel.
Good story but if doesn't make a lot of sense without reading the first book.
Fantastic bit of extra insight into the events of the Milkweed Tryptich as a whole, and Gretel's character in particular.
What Doctor Gottlieb Saw is offered for free on A few comments on this short story in the Milkweed Triptych setting can be found my blog.
Another short story

First thought: yay Nazis /sarcasm.

Second thought: wow, I liked this a lot more then I thought I would. The details seem accurate and the psychological aspects seem valid. And the idea of Gretal is just too damn creepy!
Muy buen relato corto sobre una joven Gretel (del Tríptico Asclepia) y su precognición en la granja del doctor von Westarp. Puede leerse sin problemas de spoilers después de Semillas amargas.
Excellent adjunct to "Bitter Seeds." A quick read, well crafted. The story line and characters are very unique and memorable. I can't wait to read the next book in this series (due to be released next year).
Adrienne Crezo
If you've read Bitter Seeds, and certainly if you intend to read the Milkweed Triptych, go to and get this short story. You'll be so glad you did, and it's free!
Chilling side story set in the Milkweed Triptych universe about Gretel, the most disturbing of the Nazi super people.
This can now be read without logging in to Tor's site:
Kate O'Hanlon
A nice addition to the Milkweek trilogy but not a story I;d recommend reading in isolation.
Short, sweet, and adding another layer to the whole background of Gretel and Klaus.
A quick short story that is best for people that have read Bitterseeds.
you will want to have read bitter seeds first. then this is amazing.
Good complement to Bitter Seeds!
A little look into how Gretel operates.
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Milkweed Triptych (4 books)
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