Short Story Review: "Dreams of Virginia Dare" by John P. O'Grady

"Dreams of Virginia Dare" by John P. O'Grady is one of the short stories in the anthology "Otherworldly Maine." It shares the book with such names as Mark Twain and Stephen King and is somewhat outshined by these others, to be honest.

"Dreams of Virginia Dare" starts off and gets its footing on a web of American history. Set in Maine, it draws from tales of Boston and even further south, the lost Roanoke Colony. The name Virginia Dare comes from the first child born to those colonists -- a little girl who was lost to history along with her family and neighbors. This, and the addition of allusions to magic, got "Dreams of Virginia Dare" off to a running start. It was mysterious, strange and very . . . Maine.

Before I dive into where it went wrong for me, I should mention a little more of where it went right. It was realistic, an area where many stories fail. It was explanatory and amusing in a "look what the years reveal" sort of way. However, it was also anti-climactic. It was as if it started from the end and worked its way to the beginning in terms of experience.

"Dreams of Virginia Dare" by John P. O'Grady" was a short read, compared to the other stories in the anthology. While I would not seek it out on its own merit, I certainly would not suggest skipping it when reading this anthology. It has good moments and is over rather quickly, so it is hardly a waste of time to give it a chance.

Shelly Barclay 

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