The Unparalleled Adventure of One Hans Pfaall (1835)
Edgar Allan Poe
A manuscript by the title character shocks and amazes the citizens of Rotterdam as it purports to be a record of his ascent by balloon to the moon. Incredibly detailed and pedantic, and in light of subsequent scientific advancement, this tale is all but unreadable except as a matter of historical curiosity. Unfortunately, the ascent itself is paramount here and the infinitely more intriguing fantasy of the civilization Pfaall finds on the moon is given short shrift. In a moment of high hilarity, our arrogant hero, finding neither the features nor the understandable shock and surprise of the moon-people endearing, contemptuously dismisses them as idiots.
Reviewed by: Nat Hocken