What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

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SOLVED: Adult Fiction > SOLVED. Sci Fi short story about a man with a holiday escape box in his house, a sort of holodeck, but written well before Star Trek TNG. [s]

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message 1: by SDouglas (last edited Jul 30, 2016 10:23PM) (new)

SDouglas | 4 comments Thank you for your help. I read this story in a book-bound collection of science fiction short stories in the early 1980's as a young teen. The story may have been written earlier than that. Spoilers below.

A man is struggling to get home on foot through an Arctic blizzard. Wind, blinding snow, freezing cold. He hears wolves howling nearby, fears they are about to kill him. Other awful things may have happened. He's basically in a hellish environment. He barely makes it home to his small cabin. Inside, an awful wife berates him, feeds him awful food. I can't remember if there are kids, but if there are, they too are awful.

The entire time he is yearning to go into the box, the box inside his house. The box will provide him comfort, relief, escape. His wife berates him at length for wanting to go into the box. But it is all he wants. He is desperate to finish everything he has to do, so he can be free to enter the box.

Spolier below:

He goes into the box for an escape. Turns out, the snow nightmare WAS the escape. His real life, his reality, is wonderful. Beautiful, friendly wife, good food, warm weather. Inside his real house in paradise, there is a box. He goes into the box to briefly live in a hellish world, to remind him how wonderful and easy his life is, so he can appreciate it more. So, a twist ending. Thanks again for your help.


message 2: by Lee (new)

Lee Kuivinen | 25 comments "In the Imagicon" by George Henry Smith. It was in the February 1966 GALAXY magazine, and then NEBULA AWARD STORIES 2, edited by Aldiss and Harrison.


message 3: by Andy (new)

Andy Love | 2103 comments Thanks, Lee. I remembered this one too, but couldn't find the name.


message 4: by SDouglas (new)

SDouglas | 4 comments Yes, thank you indeed. I've been searching for this off and on for years.

Did you remember it or is there a resource you used? Thanks again. Great read, great lesson.


message 5: by Kris (new)

Kris | 36060 comments Mod
Glad you found your short story, SDouglas. Here's the link for the book mentioned by Lee - Nebula Award Stories 2 by Brian W. Aldiss.


message 6: by SDouglas (new)

SDouglas | 4 comments Thanks Kris. I'm confident that is the collection in which I originally read the story.


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Books mentioned in this topic

Nebula Award Stories 2 (other topics)

Authors mentioned in this topic

Brian W. Aldiss (other topics)