Tag Archives: Novels

Brian Stableford: The Hooded Swan Series

Brian Stableford is a British science fiction and fantasy author, also active as a critic, translator and academic commentator. The Hooded Swan series of six novels, published between 1972 and 1975, is how he first caught my attention. According to the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, (and certainly more importantly for Stableford) it also marks the point at which he significantly penetrated the American science fiction market. Since then, I’ve also enjoyed some of his fantasy alternate histories: The Empire Of Fear (1988), in which vampires are real; the David Lydyard trilogy (1990-1994), ditto werewolves; and the Empire Of The Necromancers trilogy (2008-2010), ditto Frankenstein’s monster.

Angus MacVicar & W.E. Johns: Scottish Spaceflight In The 1950s

Apprehension flickered in his eyes. “The oxygen is escaping faster than it is coming in. I am sorry to put it so bluntly, but unless we can repair the damage there will soon be no oxygen left in the ship.” “How soon?” I said. “Three minutes.” Janet’s face paled, and I didn’t feel too good … Continue reading Angus MacVicar & W.E. Johns: Scottish Spaceflight In The 1950s

Poul Anderson: A Midsummer Tempest

Valeria whirled. Her finger stabbed at Rupert. “You talked about Hamlet and Macbeth—as if they were both real,” she cried. “Contemporaries, even. You said you’d met Oberon and … Titania … yourself. Well, did Romeo and Juliet ever live? King Lear? Falstaff? Othello? You mentioned cannon in Hamlet’s time. How about, by God, how about a University … Continue reading Poul Anderson: A Midsummer Tempest

Edgar Pangborn: The Darkening World Cycle

And still I persist in wondering whether folly must always be our nemesis. Edgar Pangborn, “My Brother Leopold” (1973) Edgar Pangborn had a great name—not enough people mention that, I feel. He’s the latest author to feature in my intermittent project of rereading classic-but-not-now-famous science-fiction stories from my formative years—the sort of stories that some … Continue reading Edgar Pangborn: The Darkening World Cycle

Three Locked Room Mysteries

‘I will now lecture,’ said Dr Fell, inexorably, ‘on the general mechanics and development of the situation which is known in detective fiction as the “hermetically sealed chamber.” Harrumph. All those opposing can skip this chapter. […]’ John Dickson Carr The Hollow Man (1935) “Locked Room” mysteries are stories in which the central puzzle involves … Continue reading Three Locked Room Mysteries