Which books/covers/authors intrigue you? Which have you read? Disliked? Enjoyed?
1. The Day of the Triffids, John Wyndham (1951)
From the back cover: “WHAT WERE THEY–
THESE HIDEOUS TRIFFIDS ROAMING THE RUINS OF THE EARTH?
Until a few short hours ago–before the sky exploded into a shower of flaming green hell–triffids had been regarded as merely a curious and profitable form of plant life. Now these shadowy vegetable creatures became crawling, killing nightmare of pain and horror.
Madness hung in the air, fear lurked in every side street, death hovered in every doorway. Stripped of civilized veneer by terror and desperation, the handful of surviving humans began to turn on each other.
And all the while the triffids watched and waited…”
Initial Thoughts: Yes, I don’t yet own a copy. I’ve only read The Chrysalids (variant title: Re-Birth) (1955) so far.
2. The Furies, Keith Roberts (1966)
From the back cover: “THE RULE OF THE WASPS
It all started with a nuclear test that went wrong. The test cracked the bed of the sea, raised a volcano the height of Vesuvius where before there had been a five-mile Deep…
Then the Furies struck–monstrous and deadly wasps nearly the size of man.
Their nests sprang up all over the world. They descended and slaughtered humanity at will. Breeding in their nests by the billions, they began enslaving the earth…
Not since H. G. Wells’ THE WAR OF THE WORLDS has there been such a chilling authentic story of an invasion from another world.“
Initial Thoughts: I thoroughly enjoyed Keith Roberts’ SF so far. I’ve reviewed thirteen of his short fictions over the years. I’d rank my four favorites so far as follows: “Weihnachtsabend” (1972, “The White Boat” (1966), “Sub-Lim” (1965), and “Molly Zero” (1977). Note: I’ve read but never got around to reviewing the rest of the stories in the remarkable Pavane (1968).
3. Solution Three, Naomi Mitchison (1975)
From the back cover: “HE is perfect: brown, beautiful, bright, brace. SHE is perfect: blonde, beautiful, bright, brave.
All the HEs are just like one another.
All the SHEs are identical–to their fingertips.
ALL the HEs love HEs. All the SHEs love SHEs.
They are CLONES… asexually reproduced from cells from the most perfect mand and the most perfect woman who ever lived. In this society there is no need for man to love woman. There is no need to mate.
This is the future world designed by SOLUTION THREE
Peace is here. Perfection too. Maybe…”
Initial Thoughts: Back in 2014, I read and adored Mitchison’s novel Memoirs of a Spacewoman (1962). I’d place it on my favorite SF reads of the 1960s. I’ve been meaning to get to her two other SF novels…. The premise of this one seems bland at best unfortunately.
4. Star Shine (variant title: Angels and Spaceships), Fredric Brown (1954)
From the inside flap: “WARNING! You are now entering the domain of Frederic Brown–the wonderful, weird world where the unreal is made real, the fantastic made possible, the unusual made commonplace. You will visit the only planet that can eclipse itself, meet the linotype machine to fall in love. You will be shocked, amused and amazed by this master of science fiction.”
Contents: “Pattern” (1954), “Placet Is a Crazy Place” (1946), “Answer” (1954), “Etaoin Shrdlu” (1942), “Preposterous” (1954), “Armageddon” (1941), “Politeness” (1954), “The Waveries” (1945), “Reconciliation” (1954), “The Hat Trick” (1943), “Search” (1954), “Letter to a Phoenix” (1949), “Daisies” (1954), “The Angelic Angleworm” (1943), “Sentence” (1954), “The Yehudi Principle” (1944), “Solipsist” (1954).
Initial Thoughts: I can’t remember exactly why this Brown collection was on my radar. I must have come across one of the stories in a monograph I’ve been reading. I’ve only read his solid novel The Light in the Sky Are Stars (1953).
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