REVIEW: “The Suited Prince” by CB Droege

Review of CB Droege, “The Suited Prince”, in Starward Tales II, edited by CB Droege (Manawaker Studio, 2017): 189-190 — Purchase here. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman. (Read the review of the anthology.)

This story is the shortest in the collection, barely two pages. The pin for its inspiration is stuck somewhere in Germany, but because the story is so short it is hard to tell what the root tale is — after all, there are many German fairy tales and folk tales that involve giant chickens!

The story was good for a laugh, in a way that many of the other tales in the book don’t seemed designed to be for. Sometimes, it’s good to read something whose only goal is entertainment.

REVIEW: Starward Tales II, edited by CB Droege

Review of CB Droege, ed., Starward Tales II (Manawaker Studio, 2017). Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman.

This anthology, the second in Manawaker Studio’s “Starward Tales” series, is a collection of “speculative legends”, retellings of legends, myths, and fairy tales as science fiction stories. Each story is accompanied by a map with a pin on it,

showing the approximate location of the origin of the story that inspired the work. However, many story origins are in dispute, and often an arbitrary line must be drawn to say where in history a story became the story we know today.

In addition to stories, the collection also features poetry and artwork, some newly commissioned pieces, some out-of-copyright pieces from the previous centuries, all wrapped up in a cover beautifully illustrated by Monica Rose Song. If I have one complaint about the production of the book, it is the use of straight quotes rather than “smart” quotes throughout. It’s a minor point to raise, but it detracts from the aesthetic of reading the stories, and given contemporary typesetting tools, it is not difficult to avoid. There are also a handful of places throughout where the book could have benefited from more thorough proof-reading — a missing period on p. 113, the misspelling of “pseudo” as “psuedo” on p. 114, the wrong type of dash on p. 136, extraneous capitalization on p. 241, some incorrect page references in the table of contents. Any one of these is minor, but too many of them and the result becomes less professional.

Below is a list of the contents; I will review each story individually and when the reviews are published, link to them from this post.



All the poetry is reviewed in one post.

  • “Chained”, by Vonnie Winslow Crist
  • “Girl in the Red Hood”, by Richard King Perkins II
  • “Icarus”, by María Castro Domínguez
  • “Penelope Longing for Odysseus”, by Vonnie Winslow Crist
  • “Beauty, Sleeping”, by Marsheila Rockwell