Review of “A Simple Misunderstanding” by Chris Dean

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Image by Thomas Budach from Pixabay


After two hundred years, the Rangarians and the humans have come to a, um, “the successful cessation of hostilities.” This, at least, is how the Rangarians explain it to their people. To the human ambassador, however, the Rangarian ambassador merely says, “You won.”

This confuses the human ambassador, who only recalls that humans have never won a battle in space. The Rangarian technological edge is too great. They exchange surrender stories.

Victory and defeat can be… relative.


The Rangarian ambassador knows he’s dealing with an inferior being and, at times, has difficulty hiding his contempt. He also readily admits his “side” is beaten. This makes for some amusement.

However, the resolution to this seeming paradox is obvious from a mile off. And frankly, the human ambassador is not the sharpest tool in the shed. His obtuse questions (in effect, “yeah-but…”) serve to irritate the Rangarian ambassador further.

This is a cute little story, but no more than that. Nevertheless, I enjoyed it for what it is.


According to the blurb, author Chris Dean travels the American West as a marketing representative and adores Yellowstone, the Klamath, and anyplace the sequoias touch the sky. Chris’s work has appeared in Page & Spine and other publications.

The story can be read here.

Title: “A Simple Misunderstanding”
Author: Chris Dean
First published: Theme of Absence, May 8, 2020

Published by 9siduri

I have written book and movie reviews for the late and lamented sites Epinions and Examiner. I have book of reviews of speculative fiction from before 1900, and short works in publications such Mobius, Protea Poetry Journal, and, most recently, Wisconsin Review and Drunken Pen Writing. I'm busily working away on a book of reviews pulp science fiction stories from the 1930s-1960s. It's a lot of fun. I am the author of the short story "Always Coming Home," a chapbook of poetry titled "Sotto Voce," and a collection of reviews of pre-1900 speculative fiction, "By Firelight."

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