Author Topic: PC468: Sigrid Under The Mountain  (Read 3546 times)


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on: May 02, 2017, 06:54:13 PM
PodCastle 468: Sigrid Under The Mountain

by Charlotte Ashley
read by Nina Niskanen
hosted by Graeme Dunlop
First published in F&SF

Rated R

After Esja produced sour milk three days in a row, Sigrid knew she had a problem. Leaving the pail of greenish milk next to her stool, she trudged off in the grey light of the early morning towards the barley field at the verge of the woods; the new field she had cleared only this spring. When your cow spoilt on the inside, she knew, that only meant one thing: mischief.

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Charlotte Ashley is a writer, editor and bookseller living in Toronto, Canada. Her short fiction appears in a number of anthologies and magazines, including the Year’s Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2017 (ed. Rich Horton). She has been nominated for both the Aurora and Sunburst Awards and once performed a story from the equipment of a CrossFit gym. You can find more about her at or on Twitter @CharlotteAshley.

Nina Niskanen has lived almost all of her life in the greater Helsinki (Finland) area. She speaks English and Finnish fluently, French and Swedish passably, as well as a few words of German, Spanish, Russian and Japanese. She has been telling stories for as long as she can remember and while writing is a passion, she adores audio fiction and would love the opportunity to help bring it to the masses.

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Jethro's belt

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Reply #1 on: May 03, 2017, 06:48:35 PM
No help from warriors, wizards or the lords, I liked where this went, meaning not down the cow-path usually trodden. 


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Reply #2 on: May 04, 2017, 04:13:06 AM
I was very pleased with how this story was told.  It made me think of an old friend from college, and it made me smile.  Amidst all the "everyday" fantastical elements of necromancers, walking dead, undead spirits, grand warriors and lords...there was a woman who really did love her man, in so many of the right ways, that she knew she needed to let him do his thing, and as importantly, he realized she needed to be able to have her own simpler dreams as well.

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Reply #3 on: May 04, 2017, 03:08:34 PM
I always like stories of peace and accord between different races. Also love that Sigrid is an independent woman who hasn't much use for her absentee adventuring husband. Still appreciated the sadness of the broken relationship at the end.

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Father Beast

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Reply #4 on: May 05, 2017, 10:51:19 AM
What is cool about this story is that Sigrid is a woman who married a hero, but not because he was a hero. it was for those other qualities she saw in him.

I felt bad that they couldn't reconcile and find a way to be together at the end.


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Reply #5 on: May 05, 2017, 09:59:02 PM
I want to be Sigrid when I grow up.

Or Setsu.


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Reply #6 on: May 05, 2017, 11:24:49 PM
I really loved this story. Makes me want to read some Norse/ Scandinavian folktales.

The ending made me sad, though. Ogmund's not a bad guy, and he clearly loves Sigrid, and she loves him, but it just can't work. But it is interesting to see a story from the POV of someone who's only ever hero-adjacent.


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Reply #7 on: May 19, 2017, 09:45:46 PM
Loved this one. Fascinating characters and a wonderful setting.
If quirky t-shirts count as weird, then I am doing ok in terms of life goals. I think I have the travel the world part covered. Still working on the best way to fight monsters.