Exile from Space

Cover image for


Author: Judith Merril
Published: 1956
Language: English
Wordcount: 16,464 / 51 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 86.3
LoC Category: PS
Downloads: 1,988
Added to site: 2010.03.17
mnybks.net#: 27041
Origin: gutenberg.org

Who was this strange girl who had been born in this place—and still it wasn't her home?... "They" worried about the impression she'd make. Who could imagine that she'd fall in love, passionately, the way others of her blood must have done?

Show Excerpt

d you get it, girlie?"

"My mother gave it to me. A long time ago. I wouldn't sell it, except.... Look," I said, and didn't have to work hard to sound desperate, because in a way I was. "Look, it must be worth something?"

He picked it up again. "Well ... what do you want for it?"

That went on for quite a while. I knew what it was supposed to be worth, of course, but I didn't hope to get even half of that. He offered seventy dollars, and I asked for five hundred, and after a while he gave me three-fifty, and I felt I'd done pretty well--for a greenhorn. I put the money in my purse, and went back to the car, and on the way I saw a policeman, so I stopped and asked him about a hotel. He looked me up and down, and started asking questions about how old I was, and what was my name and where did I live, and I began to realize that being so much smaller than the other people was going to make life complicated. I told him I'd come to visit my brother in the Academy, and he smiled, and sai


Average Rating of 4.5 from 2 reviews: *****
Henry L. Ratliff

(1956) Sci-fi (Alien on Earth) / Light Humor

From 'Fantastic Universe' November 1956.


Plot bullets

  • An Earth girl is allowed to make a trip back to Earth.

  • She was taken as a child..

  • Her knowledge of Earth is derived from the most reliable sources: space ship archives and recorded TV shows.

  • With that as her point of reference, she should be able to fit in nicely, right?

Sardo Weems

A touching short story of an orphan girl raised by aliens who is reintroduced to Earth as a woman after being trained to be human by TV broadcasts. It anticipated Star Trek's Nonintervention Rule.

The writing is quite good, with the author cleverly getting around the impossibility of the woman ever being able to tell her story to the reader.

Good characterizations and details make what has become a cliched situation a sweet story. Worth reading.

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