“The Constable of Abal”

ApexMag07300This week’s published piece is a delightful short (hah!)  story by Kelly Link, “The Constable of Abal.” It was first published in Pretty Monsters, her short story collection (recommend the whole thing, kiddlings), and then published at Apex Magazine. Link has several short story collections of magical, fantastical, eye-popping work, including Stranger Things Happen and Magic for Beginners. She also edits a lot of things and has taught at Clarion UCSD.

Discussion Questions:

  1. How does this story follow fairy tale tradition? How does it break from fairy tale tradition (in voice, story, expectations of characters, etc.)?
  2. What is this idea of the “fashionable ghost” all about?
  3. What part do Ozma’s repeated sex changes take in terms of the development of her character and in terms of wider social scope?
  4. Satisfying ending?
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