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by Katharine Fullerton Gerould

Genre: Comedy
Format of Original Source: Short Story
Recommended Adaptation Length:

Candidate for Adaptation? Not Reviewed


When they carried Kathleen Somers up into the hills to die where her ancestors had had the habit of dying–they didn’t gad about, those early Somerses; they dropped in their tracks, and the long grass that they had mowed and stacked and trodden under their living feet flourished mightily over their graves–it was held to be only a question of time. I say “to die,” not because her case was absolutely hopeless, but because no one saw how, with her spent vitality, she could survive her exile. Everything had come at once, and she had gone under. She had lost her kin, she had lost her money, she had lost her health. Even the people who make their meat of tragedy–and there are a great many of them in all enlightened centres of thought–shook their heads and were sorry. They thought she couldn’t live; and they also thought it much, much better that she shouldn’t. For there was nothing left in life for that sophisticated creature but a narrow cottage in a stony field, with Nature to look at.

Does it sound neurotic and silly? It wasn’t.


A woman is brought to the hills to die, and everyone readies themselves to say farewell…but then she recovers. The prose of this story sparkles; it’s breezy and wonderful. The plot, though, is rambly and difficult to follow, with long stretches which seem extraneous or even irrelevant. What’s interesting about the story is its arc, rather than the characters, and perhaps you can adapt that, but a straight adaptation of the events of the story is likely to be confusing and meandering.


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