[May 5, 1960] The Next Step (Rosel George Brown in Amazing)

Has Rosel George Brown finally broken through?

For several years, I’ve kept an eye on this promising New Orleans native.  Apart from being a woman writer in a predominately male field, she has brought a refreshingly feminine viewpoint to her stories.  But they’ve never quite rung all of my bells.  Some, like Virgin Ground have a real bitter tone to them.  Others, like Car Pool and Flower Arrangement are overly domestic in feel.  I want my heroines to be lantern-jawed and stalwart! 

In any event, I’ve always felt that Ms. Brown was an extraordinary talent waiting to break free.  Leafing through a friend’s latest issue of Amazing (generally trailing the Big Three/Four in terms of quality), I saw that she had a story within, Step IV and I quickly devoured it.

It definitely falls in the “bitter” category, but it has a new depth I have not yet seen from Brown.  Moreover, it has that quality that marks the truly good (and, occasionally, the truly bad): it is memorable.

I welcome your thoughts.

6 thoughts on “[May 5, 1960] The Next Step (Rosel George Brown in Amazing)”

  1. I agree that this is a fine story from Rosel Brown. In general, my opinion of her work is higher than yours. I’ve very much enjoyed her lighter stories, such as “Save Your Confederate Money, Boys,” which I thought had some smart and graceful writing in addition to being laugh-out-loud funny. The fact that she’s capable of darker stories like “Step IV” shows that she’s got some real range as a writer. I find her darker stories reminiscent of James Tiptree Jr., which is damn high praise in my book. (Though “reminiscent” may be the wrong word considering that Tiptree’s name won’t start appearing for another seven years or so…).

    1. Karl, thank you for the recommendation.  I have not read “Save Your Confederate Money, Boys,” as it appeared in Fantastic Universe after my subscription lapsed.  I’ll have to dig it up!

      Welcome to the Journey.

  2. A real winner, I agree. A very strong end! The classical touches are a great idea, to give it the needed fantasy tone. Perhaps, somewhere, it should have been remarked the gynocrats were also fighting.

    Thank you for sharing.

  3. This was a very good story indeed.  I found it to be subtle, moody, and evocative.  It was also an insightful meditation on the relationship between the sexes, which isn’t always very pleasant.

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