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Phantasia Press

Cuckoo's Egg by C.J. Cherryh 1985

Cuckoo's Egg by C.J. Cherryh 1985

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Cuckoo's Egg is a science fiction novel by American writer C. J. Cherryh, which introduces a fictional race (the Shonunin) raising a human boy.  The book was nominated for the Hugo Award[1] and longlisted the Locus Award for Best Novel. It was later reprinted along with Cherryh's novel Serpent's Reach in the 2005 omnibus volume The Deep Beyond.

The book's title is a reference the practice of brood parasitism among certain species of cuckoos, both Old and New World birds. In this practice, the cuckoos lay their eggs in other birds' nests and the unwitting hosts then expend their energy hatching the cuckoo's eggs, even at the potential expense of their own offspring. The metaphor is not correctly applied in this case because the Shonun in the book is knowingly and deliberately raising a human child rather than having been tricked into doing so.

In Cuckoo's Egg Cherryh adopts the less common approach in science fiction stories containing aliens of relating the story from the alien's (Shonunin) perspective, thus making the humans the aliens.

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