Review of “The Death of Doctor Island” (1973)


Gene Wolfe (writer).

Read in 2022.

Despite the title, this is neither a follow-up to “The Island of Doctor Death and Other Stories” (1970), nor another take on The Island of Doctor Moreau (1896), except that it does have talking monkeys of a sort, and one case of major surgery, and irrational humans who may remind you of Moreau’s beast men. Instead, it’s an intelligent take on the motif of “Dagger of the Mind” (1966) etc., that is a world (island) devoted to being an insane asylum. Bleak, literary and surprising, like a lot of good Wolfe.

text fiction