Way Up High
Cover of first edition (hardcover)
|Cover artist||Vaughn Bodē|
|Publisher||D. M. Grant|
Way Up High is a children's book by Hugo- and Nebula-award winning author, Roger Zelazny. It is one of two stories he wrote for children, the other being Here There Be Dragons, and one of three books without heroic protagonists. One thousand copies of each of the two books signed by Zelazny were published in 1992 with illustrations by Vaughn Bodē.
Zelazny wrote Here There Be Dragons and Way Up High for his children in 1968-69. He admired the work of underground comics artist Vaughn Bodē and commissioned him to illustrate the two books. The drawings were exhibited at the 1969 World Science Fiction Convention in St. Louis, but before the books could be published Bodē informed Zelazny that although Zelazny owned the pictures he did not have the reproduction rights. Christopher S. Kovacs in his literary biography of Zelazny explains the issue: “Zelazny saw the book as two of his tales illustrated by Bodē, but Bodē viewed it as a showcase of his art illuminated by Zelazny’s text.” The publication of the books foundered when Zelazny and Bodē insisted on equal royalties. Bodē died in 1975 and his estate agreed to the publication of the books with Bodē’s illustrations in 1992.
A girl makes friends with a pterodactyl.
- Susi – A little girl meets Herman, a pterodactyl.
- Herman – A pterodactyl takes Susi on flights way up high.
- Susi’s father – A kindly parent explains to Susi why pterodactyls are extinct.
Susi comes across Herman, a young, lonesome pterodactyl, sunning himself on a rock on her way home from school during the last week of the spring semester. They become fast friends. Susi rides on the back of the pterodactyl during the days of summer. She is astonished by the great height of their flights that makes things on the ground seem so tiny.
|In the way that the sun making you feel warm and good is magic, in the way that the wind blowing past you when you spread your wings and soar is magic, in the way that flying high and seeing everything and going through clouds and seeing that they are only wandering fog is magic. That’s all. The kind of magic everyone’s got, probably even snakes: Your own way of seeing things. Mine is the pterodactyl way.|
|— Way Up High |
Susi asks if pterodactyls are magic. He replies that he has magic—pterodactyl magic. Susi asks if she has magic. Herman says that she has human magic, but she has to learn it for herself. (See box.)
One day Herman takes Susi for one last flight, the first time at night. The lights below are as tiny and bright and numerous as the stars above. She sees beauty in the lights of the city. Herman says that pterodactyls do not build cities and he can not feel about the cities as she does. She says she has never felt this way about cities before. Herman says he thinks she is beginning to find her magic.
When they land Herman explains that the weather is too cold for him, and he must follow the birds south to a warmer climate. Promising to come the next summer, Herman says good-bye. That night Susi dreams she finds her magic.
Carolyn Cushman in Locus calls Way Up High “cute” and “interesting.” She goes on to write that “the story is quite acceptably educational – a little too much so for most adults.”  Darrell Schweitzer in Aboriginal Science Fiction writes that Way Up High and its companion piece, Here There Be Dragons, “are charming, and worthy of widespread circulation.”
- Zelazny, Roger (1992). Way Up High. D.M. Grant. pp. 45. Hardcover. ISBN 1-880418-00-2.
- Zelazny, Roger (2009). This Mortal Mountain – Volume 3: The Collected Stories of Roger Zelazny, eds. David G Grubbs, Christopher S. Kovacs, Ann Crimmins. NESF Press. pp. 576. Hardcover. ISBN 978-1-886778-78-8.
- "Roger Zelazny". Worlds without End. Retrieved 16 October 2011.
- Lindskold 1993, p. 118
- Lindskold 1993, p. 113
- Kovacs 2009, p. 269
- Zelazny 1992, p. 34
- Cushman 1992, p. 31
- Schweitzer 1993, p. 57
- Cushman, Carolyn (1992). "Reviews by Carolyn Cushman". Locus 29 (6).
- Kovacs, Christopher S. (2009). ". . .And Call Me Roger: The Literary Life of Roger Zelazny". In David G. Grubbs, Christopher S. Kovacs, Ann Crimmins. The Collected Stories of Roger Zelazny, Vol. 3: This Mortal Mountain. Framingham, MA: NESFA. ISBN 978-1-886778-78-8.
- Lindskold, Jane M. (1993). Roger Zelazny. New York: Twayne Publishers. ISBN 0-8057-3953-X.
- Schweitzer, Darrell (1993). "Books". Aboriginal Science Fiction (43 and 44): 57.
- Zelazny, Roger (1992). Way Up High. Hampton Falls, N.H: D.M. Grant. ISBN 1-880418-00-2.
- D'Ammassa, Don (2005). "Roger Zelazny". The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction. New York: Facts On File, Inc. pp. 432–434. ISBN 0-8160-5924-1.
- Grant, John, ed. (1997). "Roger Zelazny". The Encyclopedia of Fantasy. New York: St. Martin's Press. ISBN 0-312-19869-8.
- Kovacs, Christopher S. The Ides of Octember: A Pictorial Bibliography of Roger Zelazny. Boston: NESFA Press, 2010. ISBN 978-1-886778-92-4
- Krulik, Theodore (1986). Roger Zelazny. New York: Ungar Publishing. ISBN 0-8044-2490-X.
- Levack, Daniel J. H. (1983). Amber Dreams: A Roger Zelazny Bibliography. San Francisco: Underwood/Miller. pp. 34–35. ISBN 0-934438-39-0.
- Sanders, Joseph (1980). Roger Zelazny: A Primary and Secondary Bibliography. Boston: G. K. Hall and Co. ISBN 9780816180813.
- Stephens, Christopher P. (1991). A Checklist of Roger Zelazny. New York: Ultramarine Press. ISBN 9780893661663.
- Yoke, Carl (1979). Roger Zelazny: Starmont Reader’s Guide 2. West Linn, Oregon: Starmont House. ISBN 9780916732042.
- Yoke, Carl (1979). Roger Zelazny and Andre Norton: Proponents of Individualism. Columbus, Ohio: State University of Ohio.
- "Author Information: Roger Zelazny". Internet Book List. 2008. Retrieved 20 February 2013.
- "Bibliography: Way Up High". Internet Speculative Fiction Database. Retrieved 20 February 2013.
- "Exhibitions/Science Fiction Hall of Fame: Roger Zelazny". EMP Museum. Retrieved 28 April 2013.
- "Publication Listing: Way Up High". Internet Speculative Fiction Data Base. Retrieved 2 February 2013.
- "Way Up High". Open Library. Retrieved 20 February 2013.
- "Way Up High". Worldcat. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
- "Roger Zelazny". Locus Index to SF Awards. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
- "Roger Zelazny – Summary Bibliography". Internet Speculative Fiction Data Base. Retrieved 26 February 2013.