The audio CD is superb. The story, Tah, which was Mr Hubbard’s first published is the story of a 12 year old Chinese boy stuck in a war he really doesn’t wish to be in, caught up in a war machine which crushes his individuality and true wishes.
All Is Quiet on the Western Front conveyed this type of message in a different, larger, and more complex way on western wars while Tah is a simpler short work set in China that is quite poignant.
Wind-Gone-Mad, the lead story, is about an American pilot the pre-WWII era who comes to the aid of Cheng-Wang who is threatened buy a warlord called The Butcher. The quote below provides a taste of the story:
(Wind-Gone-Mad): “I see. But you happen to be perfectly willing to see an entire province ruined by three of your big ships. It doesn’t jibe, Blakely. Did you ever meet Cheng-Wang?”
(Blakely): “Once or twice.”
(Wind-Gone-Mad): “And you know that he runs a fair government. His taxes are not high. Rather than crush his people he had kept his army at actual policing strength. He did not want to burden his merchants by making them subscribe to a plane fund….”
“Jim Dahlgren is always certain that his planes will not be used for civil war. He’s trying to shoot square with the Chinese. Jim knows a friend when he sees one.”