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Clarke at 100: Earthlight

by Paul

Arthur C. Clarke would have turned 100 this year. To celebrate one of the greats of science fiction, I’m going to spend the year revisiting some of his books, and writing about them here. I’m not going to be reading them in any specific order, more a matter of which one I happen to take […]

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Peter Weston

by Paul

The death has been announced of Peter Weston, who played a central role in British science fiction and fandom for decades. He was 73, and died of complications from cancer, from which he had been suffering for some time. In the 1960s, his fanzine, variously called Zenith, Zenith Speculation and Speculation, was the venue for […]

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Discovering Margaret Cavendish

by Paul

Let’s face it, there aren’t that many science fiction writers who have appeared in novels. H.G. Wells, of course, in a whole variety of books from Christopher Priest’s The Space Machine to David Lodge’s A Man of Parts, and Philip K. Dick in Philip K. Dick is Dead, Alas by Michael Bishop. Well, now there’s a new and […]

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Discover Ted Chiang before everyone else does

by Paul

It looks like Ted Chiang is going to be the new Philip K. Dick. That is, his work is going to be the source for first rate intelligent science fiction films. The new film, Arrival, based on his short story, “Story of Your Life”, is already a big hit at cinemas around the world. But it […]

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Sheri S. Tepper

by Paul

Tags: Categories: People

In haste, I’m afraid, but I’ve just heard of the death of Sheri S. Tepper, and I can’t let that pass. Tepper was born in 1929, and only began writing novels in her late 50s, but she then wrote steadily a mixture of science fiction, fantasy and horror, right up until her death on October […]

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5 of the best by George Turner

by Paul

My passing reference to George Turner a couple of days ago reminded me that he would have turned 100 this month. So that’s as good a reason as any to look at some of his best books. Turner was an oddity. He started his career as a mainstream novelist, won awards and was highly regarded […]

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4 must-read sf biographies (and 1 brilliant autobiography)

by Paul

News that there is a new biography of Angela Carter, The Invention of Angela Carter by Edmund Gordon, reminds me how few really good biographies there have been of science fiction writers. Partly, I suppose, that is because writers spend their lives hammering on a keyboard, which doesn’t necessarily make for an exciting narrative. But there […]

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Jack Vance at 100

by Paul

1916 was a good year. There seem to have been several major writers to have been born that year, among them Jack Vance, whose 100th birthday was yesterday. To be honest, I’ve never been a great fan of his sometimes florid writing style, though his brilliant many-worlds novella, “Rumfuddle”, (collected in Terry Carr’s Best Science […]

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5 Brian Aldiss novels you must read

by Paul

As Brian Aldiss celebrates his 91st birthday, it’s a good time to remember the amazing contribution he has made to science fiction. From his first sf story (“Criminal Record”, 1954) to recent novels like Finches of Mars (2013), he has been one of the central figures in the genre. Together with J.G. Ballard, he virtually created […]

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6 Must-Read Books by Karen Joy Fowler

by Paul

Karen Joy Fowler is one of the key figures in science fiction. She is one of the founders of the James Tiptree Jr. Award, and has edited some of the Tiptree Award anthologies. Her first short story, “Recalling Cinderella”, didn’t win the Writers of the Future Contest, but ended up attracting far more attention than […]

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