The Cosmic Puppets published 1957

The Cosmic Puppets
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The setup of The Cosmic Puppets wouldn’t be out of place in an episode of The Twilight Zone. It’s set in 1953. Ted Barton returns to the small Virginia town where he grew up and finds that everything—the buildings, people and even his own past—has changed.

This one is short, coming in at under 150 pages. It has a great hook, although Dick never really explains what the showdown between the two cosmic entities of good and evil ultimately has to do with the sleepy town of Millgate.

Cast of characters

  • Ted Barton – our protagonist
  • Peggy Barton – Ted’s wife
  • Peter Trilling – the antagonist. A young boy from Millgate
  • Mary Meade – a young girl from Millgate
  • Mabel Trilling – Peter’s mother and owner of a Millgate boarding house
  • Dr. Ernest Meade – Mary’s father. Operates a private hospital in Millgate called Shady House
  • William Christopher – a town drunk and the first person Ted comes across who is aware of the change to Millgate

Other things to know

  • Ahriman – the destroyer
  • Ormazd – the builder. Better known in Zoroastrianism as Ahura Mazda

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