Joe Haldeman
A familiar story in a new universe

REWRITING a famous story from a different character's point of view has become common enough that the results constitute a genre of their own. John Gardner saw "Beowulf" through the monster's eyes in "Grendel"; Jean Rhys' "Wide Sargasso Sea" excavated the life of Jane Eyre's "madwoman in the attic"; while Tom Stoppard's play "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead" infused life into a pair of tertiary players in "Hamlet." It's the literary equivalent of those particularly potent cover versions that forever change the way you hear the original. (Think of Kirsty MacColl giving us the woman's side of...