4.1.19.TAIGA.FIRST.PAGE

I appreciate SF stories that explore the inner space of humanity, rather than the outer space of the universe with space ships, space travel, ship’s captains, and the like. So I prefer stories that delve into psychology rather than rocketry.
In “Taiga” I got to do both.
But more than that, believe it or not, I was thinking about the adoption of our Angora-Siamese cat, Athena a few years ago. And of our other cats, and of people’s pets in general.
I mean, think about it: a kitten or puppy is with her mother, her litter mates. Then, without warning, she is whisked away from the family she knows and taken by a huge creature—that would be you or me—and placed in a strange cavern—your house or mine.
The kitten or puppy doesn’t know your intentions, whether you mean her harm or good. Maybe you offer food that she doesn’t like or can’t eat. And the kitten or puppy can’t communicate with you, not really. Not at first. You speak in abstract sounds that to her have no meaning.
Only through a learning process can she discern your intentions and your wishes for her.
I ratcheted that up one or two fantasy levels to a human placed in a similar situation and let Katarina figure out how to survive.
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