Light: A Tale of the Magical Creatures of Zudukii, by T. S. McNally – book review by Fred Patten.
by Patch O'Furr
Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.
Light: A Tale of the Magical Creatures of Zudukii, by T. S. McNally.
Syracuse, NY, Bounding Boomer Books, February 2015; trade paperback $9.99 (151 pages), Kindle $4.99.
“Magical creatures” are the operative words here. I usually divide anthropomorphic fiction into either furry or funny-animal fiction, depending upon whether the anthro animals show some semblance of reality as to species, or whether they are “animal-headed humans”. In Light, though, the inhabitants of Zudukii are totally, blatantly fantastic. It is rare when two characters, say a brother and sister, are the same species, and all are basically humans. A bear has an otter sister, who has a kangaroo boyfriend.
Actually, he’s not exactly a kangaroo. While Garoo is usually called a kangaroo, he is more accurately described (disparagingly) as a kangabuck, a kangaroo with antlers; the son of a stag father and a kangaroo mother. See the cover by Selkie. But most characters do not display a mixed heritage. They are either one animal or the other.
Does Garoo hop or walk? The reader can’t tell. Does he have other non-kangaroo attributes? Page 29 says, “The crowd had grown to such a size that the kangaroo wrapped his tail around one of the posts as to keep himself from accidently falling into the water.” Kangaroo tails are not that prehensile.
Do the animals, including anthro birds, wear clothes or not? This is vague until page 31, when “Enveloped in a long green dress, a grey bushy form of a squirrel female […]” — although it’s still unclear as to whether all of the animals wear clothes or only some of them.