REVIEW: “Lady Clanbevan’s Baby” by Clotilde Graves

Review of Clotilde Graves, “Lady Clanbevan’s Baby” in A Brilliant Void: A Selection of Classic Irish Science Fiction, edited by Jack Fennell (Tramp Press, 2018): 179-189 — Purchase here. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman. (Read the review of the anthology).

This is one creepy, appalling story. Lady Clanbevan, as youthful and beautiful now as she was in her twenties, even though she is now approaching fifty, has been a widow for two decades, and yet, she is never seen without the accompany of a young baby, her child — her only child. A chance encounter between the Professor who loved her once many years ago and the unnamed narrator gives the Professor an opportunity to finally confess the details of his experiments with protium — now called radium — and the way in which he discovered he could use it to halt the affects of ageing. By now, of course, the reader knows what resolution must be coming, but it doesn’t make the narrator’s final encounter with Lady Clanbevan’s baby any less disturbing.

(Originally published in 1915.)