“Day at the Beach,” Carol Emshwiller, 1959 — In a post-apocalyptic world, a couple with a very hirsute, very violent son, Littleboy, struggles to reenact a normal “day at the beach.” When they’re attacked by thieves after their gasoline, Littleboy’s aggressive nature, usually somewhat frightening, provides an advantage.
Comments: Read in Best of the Best, ed. Merril. For a review of her collected works and brief commentary on this story, see L. Timmel Duchamp’s review at Strange Horizons.
Author: Wikipedia: “Carol Emshwiller (born April 12, 1921) is an American writer of avant garde short stories and science fiction who has won prizes ranging from the Nebula Award to the Philip K. Dick Award. Ursula K. Le Guin has called her ‘a major fabulist, a marvelous magical realist, one of the strongest, most complex, most consistently feminist voices in fiction.'”