Short Story: SINEW AND STEEL AND WHAT THEY TOLD, by Carrie Vaughn



Click on the link to read the story online


It’s beyond difficult to write about this story without saying anything about it that would constitute a spoiler, so the best way to try and persuade you to read it would be to quote its first sentence:

I am cut nearly in half by the accident. The surviving fibers of my suit hold me together. I am not dead.

Graff is a scout runner, from the ship Visigoth, and some catastrophic accident almost killed him, but that’s only the beginning of the whole journey, because once he’s retrieved by his shipmates and brought to the infirmary the real weirdness begins.

This short story is mostly played between three characters: Graff himself, doctor Ell and Captain Ransom. They have to come to terms with a momentous revelation, one that might change forever their perception of the past and inform their decisions for the future – no matter how their choices will go, there will be a huge change in the way the three relate to each other.

I liked Graff’s voice: it’s both humorous and self-deprecating and so very humanly scared of what the future will hold for him. Just as his true reason for being where he is, for doing what he does, is a poignant one that’s bound to resonate with everyone who loves stories…

Yes, I realized I’ve used a lot of words to say practically nothing, but if you choose to read this one you will understand why, and I hope you will love it just as much as I did.

Happy reading.


My Rating:

24 thoughts on “Short Story: SINEW AND STEEL AND WHAT THEY TOLD, by Carrie Vaughn

  1. That first sentence though!😍😍😍😍 Loved it, Mads! Also, I gotta tell you HOW MUCH I ADORE THAT OWL IN YOUR AVATAR 😍😍😍 It’s just TOO CUTE FOR WORDS! ❤️😭🥺🦋

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh I LOVE this story, Maddalena! But then, I figured that I probably would – it’s Carrie Vaughn, after all. I’ve read the two books in her Bannerless Saga series and they were OUTSTANDING. Thank you so much for sharing this!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It charts the adventures of an investigator into suspicious deaths in a post-apocalyptic America. No zombies or stuff like that – just really, really good writing and bags of tension…

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes, I think that I will have to read this one now – that first sentence is terrifying, compelling, horrible and, well, just horrible (I know I said it twice but…). I’ll have to read it immediately.
    Lynn 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow, possibly one of the best short stories I’ve read -and I don’t usually like short stories so I think I’m a tough audience. Puts me in mind of Becky Chambers, or at least that knack she has for making likable, relatable characters and complicated relationships.
    Lynn 😀

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I think you would like Becky Chambers and I am definitely curious to read your thoughts. The three books I’ve read offers were all completely different. LWTASAP is almost like being on board the starship enterprise as it sets off on its adventures. It has A very small crew and a sentient ship and we follow their adventures, particularly through the latest new member. Closed and Common Orbit was probably my favourite but I don’t want to say too much because it could be spoiler(y). The third book is then different again. In fact the titles are very appropriate and you’ll know exactly what I mean if you get a chance to read them. She excels at characterisation and bring out all the feelings of her readers.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Your reply tempts me to move the first book at the top of my reading queue! 😉
          I like the idea of a crew facing ‘adventures’ and I like even more the words “sentient ship”: I guess this is a major selling point for me… It’s interesting that this trilogy does not seem to follow the same set of characters but rather to explore different settings – another point in its favor 🙂
          Thank you for the info!!!!

          Liked by 1 person

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