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Hugo Gernsback

SF from Benelux you should be reading

by Paul

Our leisurely tour around the world of science fiction brings us to the Low Countries, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands (though, apart from being the birthplace of Hugo Gernsback, Luxembourg doesn’t really feature in this story). The old name for the region, “The Low Countries”, and the more recent name, “Benelux”, both suggest that this […]

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How to build your SF Reference Library: Essays

by Paul

If you start getting into the more academic areas of science fiction criticism, then you’re going to have to get used to dealing with essays. Much academic criticism comes in the form of essays (come to think of it, many books are really compilations of essays). Some of these are heavy going (there are always […]

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Discovering the Award Winners: Birth of the Hugos

by Paul

The organizers of the 1953 Worldcon, known as PhilCon II, were looking for a centrepiece event for their convention. They decided on an award ceremony. The awards would be known as the Science Fiction Achievement Awards, and would be voted on by members of the convention. At the time there was no plan to continue […]

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How to Build Your SF Reference Library 2, Histories

by Paul

If you want to build up a reference library on science fiction, the first thing you need is context. In other words, there are certain very basic things you need to be able to find out. When did A happen? Did B occur before C, or after it? How does D relate to E? What […]

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10 Essential SF Books of the 1920s

by Paul

Our peripatetic journey through the history of science fiction takes us back to that curious decade, the 1920s, back by some reckonings, to the very beginning of science fiction itself. In retrospect, the 1920s was a transitional age. It emerged from the end of the First World War, whose horrors and with them the decimation […]

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