The Goblin Reservation

Novel, first published: Galaxy Science Fiction, April + June 1968

As long as Simak treated his fantasy as humor, some reviewers did not seem to mind the presence of fantasy critters in a supposedly science-fiction novel - as long as they were presented as aliens sent to Earth eons ago. In The Goblin Reservation, Simak included them all - goblins, ghosts, trolls, banshees, ghosts, and even a dragon. For good measure, Simak also tossed in the pot a Neanderthal named Alley Oop working on his doctorate, Shakespeare's ghost and the Bard himself, a saber-tooth tiger named Sylvester, a "doppelgänger" college professor, and a mysterious artifact levitated right out of Clarke's 2001. All of the action is set at a college in Wisconsin, and the protagonist is a professor of supernatural phenomena who has just returned from the stars (in the type of matter transmitter used in Way Station) to find that a duplicate of himself, returned before him, has been murdered. From this point on, the plot is a mixture of fantasy and comic opera as the professor tries to solve his own murder, unravel the mystery of the artifact, rescue a painter lost in time, and thwart some nasty aliens, all with the magical help of the assorted company of folklore aliens.

Ewald, Robert J.: When the Fires Burn High and the Wind is from the North, p.92