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Octavia Butler

A Brief History of Time Travel: 6 Key Books

by Paul

So far this year, we’ve looked forward in time to consider the books that will be coming out this month, then travelled back in time to the very beginnings of science fiction. Since we’re still recovering from this literary jetlag, it seems only appropriate to look at the history of this literary device. We’ve picked […]

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The greatest sf authors?

by Paul

There’s a post I’ve just come across (it seems to be a year old, but you know how these things disappear and resurface on the web) that claims to list “The Greatest Sci-Fi Authors of All Time“. It’s an interesting, if largely predictable list: Isaac Asimov, Philip K. Dick, Ursula K. Le Guin, Frank Herbert, […]

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How to Build Your SF Reference Library: Modern Masters of Science Fiction

by Paul

There’s an academic term: monograph. Basically it means a study of one particular subject. Where that subject is a science fiction writer, we’ve been pretty poorly served up to now. There have been occasional biographies, though these have usually been restricted to the very best known authors and haven’t always been that good. And let’s […]

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Locus Award shortlists

by Paul

Awards Categories: Awards

Locus has announced the top ten finalists in each category of the Locus Awards. The winners will be announced at the Locus Award Weekend in Seattle in June. The full list of finalists is here, but these are the main science fiction categories: Science Fiction Novel                         […]

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Women SF Writers you should be reading, part 1

by Paul

To coincide with International Women’s Day, we’ve put together an A-Z of women sf writers you should be reading. The list doesn’t even pretend to be exhaustive, for a start we’re keeping to just one writer per letter so the list could be many many many times longer than it actually is (on the plus […]

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14 more Afrofuturists you should be reading

by Paul

For the last month we’ve celebrated Black History Month by looking at some of the great black science fiction writers (Afrofuturist is now the vogue term for black sf writer). So far we’ve considered Samuel R. Delany, Octavia E. Butler, Steven Barnes, Nnedi Okorafor, Nalo Hopkinson and Tobias Buckell, but that barely skims the surface […]

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Nnedi Okorafor

by Paul

So, last week in our survey of black science fiction writers, we looked at some of the long-established black writers. This week, it’s time to turn to some of the writers who have emerged in the last decade or so. We begin with Nnedi Okorafor, an American writer of Nigerian extraction who has, throughout her […]

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Octavia E. Butler

by Paul

Okay, choosing Samuel R. Delany to kick off our survey of black sf writers was maybe a little obvious. But then, so is Octavia E. Butler. Yet you can’t really talk about modern science fiction without mentioning either of them. And because they are essential, sometimes you have to be obvious. The differences between them […]

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Black History Month

by Paul

It’s Black History Month (and why pick the shortest month of the year for such a momentous subject), and that seems like a good excuse to look at the black contribution to science fiction. Black writers have made a pretty big contribution to the history of science fiction, but as in so many things (the […]

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10 Essential SF Books of the 1990s

by Paul

This was the decade in which some right-wing commentators proclaimed the end of history, and to be fair that’s how it felt. The fall of the Berlin Wall had been the trigger that ended the Cold War, and throughout the early years of the decade we saw the gradual but inevitable disintegration of the Soviet […]

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