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Howard Who?: Twelve Outstanding Stories of Speculative Fiction
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Howard Who?: Twelve Outstanding Stories of Speculative Fiction

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  111 ratings  ·  18 reviews
Introduction by George R.R. Martin (A Song of Ice and Fire): “If this is your first taste of Howard, I envy you. Bet you can’t read just one.”

“Italo Calvino once said that he was ‘known as an author who changes greatly from one book to the next. And in these very changes you recognize him as himself.’ Much the same could be said of Howard Waldrop. You never know what he’ll

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Hardcover, 181 pages
Published July 1st 1986 by Doubleday Books (first published 1986)
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Georgene
Oct 13, 2014 Georgene rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Georgene by: Philip Wickstrand
Shelves: fantasy
My son loaned me this book. As a loan, I try to get them read before books I own. So, I took this to bed with me, fell asleep with it in my arms, had to re-read 3 of the short stories (the sacrifices I make!) when I picked it up again. GREAT stories! This author has been around longer than I have and I VERY happy to discover him. Harold Waldrop has a lovely, warped style of writing. Please, if you find this book, READ IT!
Don
May 25, 2008 Don rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes strong genre literature without any so-called "literary pretentions"
Shelves: favorites
There's a reason people call Waldrop a master. Not a single story out of the dozen in this collection failed to satisfy. They're the real deal, with imaginative plots and spot-on characterizations. Not to mention the risks he takes on theme and subject matter that pay off. When I finished the story "Horror, We Got" I thought to myself, Oh no, he didn't!. You'll either have to take my word, or check it out yourself.
le-trombone
This is Waldrop's first collection of short stories, re-issued by Small Beer Press, and bless them for it. I'm happy to have it, since I can't loan out my old Doubleday copy anymore, and any excuse to re-read Waldrop is a good one.

The Ugly Chickens (1980) can it be that the dodo still survives? Possibly Waldrop's best-known story.

Der Untergang des Abendlandermenschen (1976) almost indescribable. Weimar Germany, German Expressionist movie monster, touring cowboys. All of which pale before a truly
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Unwisely
There was a note on the library shelf in the SF section that if you hadn't heard of this guy you were in for an experience. And I would say that's true.

This is a collection of short stories, with very little in common. I really enjoyed the first one, (about dodos), was mostly confused by several, and thought the rest were okay. So I'm not out to find more of this guy, but it was pleasant.
Syntactical Disruptorize
What if Sherlock Holmes and Billy the Kid went vampire hunting, only to run afoul of the early Nazi party? What if Dwight Eisenhower had gone into music while Elvis Presley went into politics? If Izaac Walton and John Bunyan went fishing for Leviathan? Best of all, the stories aren't just gimmicks; the characters are real, the detail amazing.
John
An incredibly imaginative book, full of strange characters and ideas, tragedy and loss and a lot of humour. The famous 'The Ugly Chickens' concerns the last Dodo on the planet - only nobody knows that's what it is until it's too late. 'Save a Place in the Lifeboat for Me' has Laurel and Hardy, the Marx Brothers and the Three Stooges trying to stop Buddy Holly from getting on the plane that ultimately killed him. 'Man-Mountain Gentian' is the tale of Sumo wrestlers who fight using only their mind ...more
Darrel
Every time I pick this book up I seem to have forgotten how wonderful it is. Without a doubt, Waldrop is the greatest short-story writer I know of, and partially because he is willing to take such huge risks. The Marx Brothers, Laurel & Hardy, and Abbott & Costello traveling through time on the orders of God, to prevent The Day the Music Died? Yup. A post-apocalyptic tractor pull where license plates are traded as currency? Sure. A scientist who discovers the dodo may not actually be ext ...more
Ed
Apr 09, 2010 Ed rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Ed by: Larry
Shelves: quendi, sf-fantasy
Howard Waldrop isn't a very well known SF author. I think it's because he doesn't really write novels. He mostly writes short stories and novellas, and he has won a slew of awards for them. His stories are very innovative, but, if I had one criticism, the stories sometimes have little going for them besides innovation. As with any short story collection, I liked some more than others. I particularly liked "Dr. Hudson's Secret Gorilla," "Green Brother," "Mary Margaret Road-Grader," and "Man-Mount ...more
Don Massi
Why haven't I read any Howard Waldrop before? Why haven't I heard of him before? Seriously, this guy's a master, his short stories are rivetingly quirky. Waldrop combines painstaking research, a wild imagination and sheer craft to give us a collection of some of the weirdest, most entertaining stories I've ever read. And while I liked some more than others, every story is a gem. This is an author I want to read a whole lot more.
Katherine francis
breathless. There are no words to describe the depths of research that this man has done in order to tell a really weird tale. I loved this book so much. Each story was so random and odd-ball compared to the others--there was no connection, just beautiful weirdness with a lot of historical and cultural research to make it all seem so real.
Larry
Waldrop is such an inventive writer. Most of the stories, I finished with a huge grin on my face from the sheer amazement at what he'd pulled off. There were a couple of clunkers, but gems like "The Ugly Chickens", "Mary Margaret Road Grader" and "Heirs of the Perisphere" more than made up for them.
Steven Vaughan-Nichols
This excellent first collection of Howard Waldrop short stories reminded me yet again that I'm sorry I didn't read more of his fiction earlier and how very glad I'm finally reading this now. He writes of worlds of marvels and I'm very glad to be along for the ride.
Adam
Short fiction written with the creativity of Robert Coover and Angela Carter (but way lighter in tone)filled with odd connections, skewerings of genre, history, and pop culture; a book filled with wonderful ideas.
Mitchell
These are some very clever stories, though Alternative History isn't a genre I usually enjoy. I liked at least half of these stories, so I'm happy.
Nikku
A fun book of short stories by an author I had never heard of but really should get to know more.
Mrelia
May 10, 2007 Mrelia rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Science Fiction Readers, People with an odd sense of humor...
Though he has written many other outstanding stories, "Ugly Chickens" remains a classic.
Cheryl
Apr 30, 2012 Cheryl marked it as library-to-read  ·  review of another edition
Battle Mountain (Science Fiction, Adult)
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Howard Waldrop is a science fiction author who works primarily in short fiction. Waldrop's stories combine elements such as alternate history, American popular culture, the American South, old movies, classical mythology, and rock 'n' roll music.
More about Howard Waldrop...
Them Bones Night Of The Cooters All about Strange Monsters of the Recent Past: Neat Stories Things Will Never Be the Same: A Howard Waldrop Reader: Selected Short Fiction 1980-2005 Custer's Last Jump and Other Collaborations

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