As always which books/covers/authors intrigue you? Which have you read? Disliked? Enjoyed?
1. The Heads of Cerberus, Francis Stevens (1919)
Uncredited cover for the 1984 edition
From the back cover: “Francis Stevens’ fast-paced, imaginative novel is probably the first science-fiction work to deal with the concept of parallel worlds. Five young friends inhale the dust of Purgatory, pass through the Gateway of the Moon and enter the marvelous Alternate Earth where time flows at a far faster pace than her own. To their horror and amazement, by stepping over the bank of the unknown, they have left their world of Philadelphia in 1917 and have entered into a mystifying and dangerous “Philadelphia” of 2118. How they attempt to escape from the oblivion that threatens to swallow them is an unforgettable journey into the fantastic.”
Initial Thoughts: Pre-WWII SF and I don’t mix. I’ve tried. I read Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1818), C. S. Lewis’ Cosmic Trilogy (1938-1945), David Lindsay’s A Voyage to Arcturus (1920), and plenty of others…. That said, the historian in me itches to have Continue reading
The erudite and prolific Jesse provides the fourth guest post in my SF Short Stories by Women Writers pre-1969 series (original announcement and list of earlier posts). I recommend investigating the archives over at his blog Speculiction, which covers both vintage and new SF ranging from Aliya Whiteley’s The Beauty (2014) to John Brunner’s The Jagged Orbit (1969).
His post focuses on three stories from different authors including one of the best known from the pre-1969 era: the writing pair of C.L. Moore and Henry Kuttner, Katherine MacLean, and Edna Underwood. As no discussion of women in pre-1969 SF would be complete without C.L. Moore, and it is often impossible to discern which stories she wrote individually and which she wrote with her husband Henry Kuttner, I gave the go ahead for Jesse to review one of their best known co-written short stories.
I hope you’ll track them down!
(Katherine Maclean’s “The Snowball Effect” first appeared in the September 1952 issue of Galaxy, cover: Jack Coggins)
Review of “Vintage Season” (1945) by C.L. Moore and Henry Kuttner, “The Snowball Effect” (1952) by Katherine MacLean, and “The Painter of Dead Women” (1910) by Edna Underwood
Gender in science fiction is surely one of the top three subjects in online genre discussion these days. The objectification of women, the roles of women in story, the lack of award recognition for female writers, the negative Continue reading
(Richard Powers’ cover for the 1952 edition of Rat Race (1950), Jay Franklin)
Part III of my series on Nuclear Explosions + Mushroom Clouds…. Part I + Part II
As always, I’ve included a variety of novel and magazine covers on the theme from the 50s-70s. My favorite is by far Richard Powers’ cover for the 1952 edition of Rat Race (1950) — his occasional less surreal visions from the 1950s are artistically adept and powerful (by the 60s the majority of his covers are surrealist). I found that the uncredited cover for the 1961 edition of Dark December (1960) convincingly depicts the loneliness of the survivors in their new world… J. F. Doeve’s cover for the 1966 Dutch edition of The Crucified City (1962) displays the devastation Continue reading
8/10 (Very Good)
tagline (a remarkably prescient one): “War in the Air! Possibilities of the Future! And actual motion picture prediction of the ideas of Rudyard Kipling, H. G. Wells, Jules Verne, and other powerful writers of imaginative fiction. Shows what might happen in the near future Continue reading