To the crew of the Exploratory Ship Canopus, outward bound on the first intergalactic voyage to the flaring suns of mighty Andromeda, the evil whisperings that spilled out from the nebula into deep space came as a warning. This was something far beyond their previous experience. Nor were they the only ones to come under the malignant influence of the alien intelligence.
In the empty, murmuring void, virtually half-way between the two galaxies of stars, a solitary sun streaked away from Andromeda, dragging its lonely, ammonia-laden planet with it. And it was here that the explorers first gained their glimpse of the black horror that lay straddled across the intergalactic darkness. Something that had being. Something that existed where it seemed impossible that anything could.
It fell on Klau-Telph, the only non-Terran on board the Canopus, to finally track down and destroy the inhuman monster that threatened to drive the inhabitants of a trillion planets over the red edge of madness. Not until it was done did he find that the hidden reason behind the insidious whisperings was not what it seemed. In fact, it was something that even he, with his strange double mind, had never thought possible…
The countryside is hundreds of feet deep in snow, and a small community is managing to exist in the bell-tower of a church, just above the snow level. For sustenance they make journeys to the shops of the village far below by tunnels. They also stay alive by hunting the ferocious and telepathic bear-like animals known as Pals.
The individuals in the small group are brilliantly portrayed, in turn defeatist, boastful, querulous, selfish and generous. They are obsessive, they argue; but when danger threatens, as it often does, they immediately band together in their common fight for survival.
After bitter defeat on the Isle of the One Tree, Thomas Covenant, Linden Avery and the Giants of the Search take ship again. Across the frozen oceans they return to the Land, now perilously close to destruction from the ravages of the Sunbane. Drawn inexorably towards the caverns deep below Mount Thunder, Covenant and Linden Avery prepare to meet their bitterest foe. Even the white gold they carry may not serve against Lord Foul’s powers. For once the wild magic is released, the Arch of Times will crack, and Lord Foul’s conquest of the Land will be assured . . .
There was only one way out of Harge: to find a singing jewel, the greatest prize on that world of sand dunes. But the jewels were hidden deep in the burrows of Harge’s most vicious predator.
Earl Dumarest could fight humans, could match wits with the implacable Cyclan. But now, in his galaxy-spanning quest for the lost planet Earth, he must face the WEB OF SAND.
(First published 1979)
Somewhere there was a radioactive fire that could perform miracles of super-science. Somewhere there was a place where cat-people prowled, where time was altered, and incredible mysteries held their secrets of power and fortune for the daring discoverer. Deep in an unexplored jungle, Brian Raft sought the secret of the legendary Valley of the Flame . . .
A missing relative…
Something of value was buried beneath the underwater dome city of Marinia…something that had already cost one man’s life, caused another man’s kidnapping and gravely affected still another man’s future.
Expelled from the Sub-Sea Academy on trumped-up charges, Jim Eden wasn’t about to wait around to prove his innocence. As soon as he leaned that his uncle mysteriously disappeared while mining uranium at the bottom of hazardous Eden Deep, Jim knew what he had to do…and that he had to do it fast.
So he headed for the vast dome city – location of the great mining colony at the bottom of the sea – to pick up any clues to his uncle’s disappearance. But once he had entered the undersea metropolis, the wrong people had his number…and they were determined that Jim would sink forever without a trace.
Everyone at the Academy knew that sea serpents were, without a doubt, silly superstitions. Everyone but David Craken, that is. This young cadet from Marinia had been born and raised four miles beneath the waves, and he knew that more than rich new fuel sources and precious stones lay in wait for the men who dared invade this last frontier.
But when David dived into the depths at thirteen hundred feet and disappeared – only to reappear, drifting offshore months later – his friend Jim Eden learned there was more truth to certain superstitions than he cared to believe. On a strange and hazardous journey, Jim and the men of the Sub-Sea Academy suddenly found themselves up against the dangerous creatures of the deep – and embroiled in a life-against-life adventure they would never forget!
In a Twentieth Century Parallel world, the renegade George Washington has long been decently and quietly liquidated and Britain’s greatest colony, America, is to be connected to the Mother of Parliaments by the strongest of umbilical cords – a Transatlantic Tunnel.
Welcome to the Tomorrow Factory.
On your left, post-human hedonists on a distant space station bring diseases back in fashion, two scavengers find a super-powered parasite under the waves of Sunk Seattle, and a terminally-ill chemist orchestrates an asteroid prison break.
On your right, an alien optometrist spins illusions for irradiated survivors of the apocalypse, a high-tech grifter meets his match in near-future Thailand, and two teens use a blackmarket personality mod to get into the year’s wickedest, wildest party.
This collection of published and original fiction by award-winning writer Rich Larson will bring you from a Bujumbura cyberpunk junkyard to the icy depths of Europa, from the slick streets of future-noir Chicago to a tropical island of sapient robots. You’ll explore a mysterious ghost ship in deep space, meet an android learning to dream, and fend off predatory alien fungi on a combat mission gone wrong.
Twenty-three futures, ranging from grimy cyberpunk to far-flung space opera, are waiting to blow you away.
So step inside the Tomorrow Factory, and mind your head.
Beneath the surface of To Walk the Night lies something strange and exciting that lends the tale a tense and troubling quality. There is the baffling and beautiful woman who complicates the lives of four men. Who is she whose past is a mystery so deep, so inexplicable that those who penetrate it die?
Were the blue-robed worshippers of the atom, symbolised by the Cobalt-60 reactors that glowed blindingly on every alter in their fast-growing churches.
Were the green-robed heretics, a breakaway faction condemned as icon-adorers, who believed that their creed was truer to the code of Vorst, the Founder.
At the beginning of the 22nd century, Earth colonies were established on Mars and Venus. But the ultimate dream – to travel to the stars – was still an impossibility. A few enlightened men believed that the Vorsters and the Harmonists could solve this seemingly insurmountable problem, if they could only forget their differences and work together. But the hatred between the two factions was too deep to be reconciled – until a conflict on Venus between a Vorster priest and his Harmonist opponent resulted in some totally unexpected developments . . .
CONSPIRACY OF GENIUS
His height barely reached five feet, his spindly legs supported a bulging chest, and his eyes protruded grotesquely from a gnome-like head – but within that absurd-looking man lay the mind of a genius.
It was a genius that had carried mankind deep into the secrets of creation and was now on the verge of producing living organisms from test tubes filled with inert chemicals. The world, however, ridiculed the theories of Professor Cheslin Randolph and the government refused to advance the millions needed for the final series of experiments.
But Professor Randolph was determined to get the money – even if it meant turning his powerful brain to robbing a spaceship in mid-flight, using trained viruses as his accomplices.
The Westminster Disaster is based on the present world shortage of high-grade uranium and the action turns on a Soviet threat to use nuclear blackmail against London.
When the British Ambassador to the U.N. seeks to veto a Soviet demand for sanctions against South Africa, the threat becomes a hideous reality.
Writing from a position of intimate knowledge of advanced trends in research and science administration, in this novel the Hoyles give vivid expression to their deep fears about the present world situation and about carefully laid plans for Soviet domination…
Little did Zarkon dream that on a tiny south sea paradise loomed an evil force that would challenge even his mighty powers and the courage and skills of the Omega men.
Then with shattering suddenness Zarkon and his team were thrown into the path of the hideous flaming figure that rose from the mouth of a living volcano to bring scorching death and boiling terror to mankind!
There was only one way for Zarkon to combat this satanic spectre from inner space. He had to descend into the monster’s lair, and in that fiery inferno deep in the bowels of the Earth, Zarkon and his followers plunged into their most hair-raising adventure!
A STAR RISES IN THE SOUTH
When the foreigners confronted Sterren in Ethshar of the Spices he was uneasy; when they all but abducted him, taking him to an obscure kingdom in the south, he knew he was in a terrible predicament.
A predicament some might actually find appealing – he was by heredity the Ninth Warlord of Semma, least of the small kingdoms; he was a noble, and his rank afforded him material privileges, even in a place as insignificant and obscure as Semma.
But the office also carried certain terrible responsibilities: he was to win the war the stupid King had stirred up by his arrogance. Two larger and stronger Kingdoms were preparing to invade Semma.
And if the country lost, the first thing likely to be forfeit was the life of the Warlord.
And if it won . . . if it won, the fate and shape of Ethshar would change forever.
For deep in the south there are secrets of magic not even Sterren can imagine.
A LEGEND OF ETHSHAR
They called him the Survivor – a 20th Century man ‘reborn’ in 2113.
After a devastating atomic holocaust, mankind had now turned to the machine to solve his problems. Which led to the androids – descended from the robot, they were hardly distinguishable from real humans. By the year 2113 they ran society – leaving man to a life of leisure.
It was into this world that John Markham emerged after spending 146 years of suspended animation in an underground deep-freeze unit. But his new lease of life was likely to be a short one. A man with his outdated ideas could be very dangerous – a fact the androids realized only too well.
A company-controlled oil town becomes the scene of a layoff and a subsequent boycott led by Rafael Garay, whose wife is killed alongside 17 others in the protest.
Mat Darlow, a gentle mining engineer, is sent to the Latin American community to handle the situation. Each man is fighting for control of the Three Sentinels: three, deep, surging oil wells perched on a barren ridge of the Andes.
Despite the deadlock, the opponents are instinctively drawn to each other – and one thing links them: Garay’s son, Chepe, who attaches himself to both men at war.
‘Household is a story-teller in direct line of descent from Daniel Defoe and Robert Louis Stevenson’ New Yorker
In a basement in New Mexico, four poker buddies and amateur adventurers who have discovered a dark mystery buried beneath the sands of the Sahara desert decide to do something about it.
In the deep Sahara, they find an ancient artifact that will change their lives and the world, forever . . . a gateway between planets that links Earth to distant worlds where they discover wonders and terrors beyond their wildest imagination.
Gully Foyle, Mechanic’s Mate 3rd Class.
That’s the official verdict on Gully Foyle, unskilled space crewman.
But right now he is the only survivor on his drifting, wrecked spaceship, and when another space vessel – the Vorga – ignores his distress flares and sails by, Gully becomes obsessed with revenge. He endures 170 days alone in deep space before finding refuge on the Sargasso Asteroid and returning to Earth to track down the crew and owners of the Vorga. But, as he works out his murderous grudge, Gully Foyle also uncovers a secret of momentous proportions …
These are the heroes of the Starry Rift, a dark river of night that flows between the arms of our galaxy: a headstrong teenaged runaway who makes first contact with a strange alien race; a young officer on a deep-space salvage mission who discovers an exact double of a woman he thought he’d lost; and the crew of an exploration ship who must plead for the human race to avert an interstellar war.
From the opening reared a head, wide, flat, huge. Below it stretched a body beautiful with iridescent scales of gold edged with ruby. Nictitating membranes lifted over enormous eyes, deep, limpid pools of ancient wisdom, catching and reflecting the light of the miniature sun, turning the glowing orb into a scatter of stars shimmering in an ebon sea. From open jaws a forked tongue flickered with a soft susurration. Its scent was dry, acrid, tinged with that of living fur on a summer’s day. The head rose higher, swaying over the three men on the ledge, the sinuous length of the body almost filling the passage through which it had come. From it radiated an impression of incredible age.
“A serpent,” whispered Thagamista. “A creature from the beginning of time. Somehow surviving to find this place and feast on those who well here. It was inevitable they should think it a god.”
THE SLEEPING CITY continues the dynamic saga of the Chronicles of Malkar, E.C. Tubb’s newest fantasy hero!
A deep and meaningful masterpiece of science fiction, full of heart and mind-bending ideas. A true classic, Vonnegut will make you laugh and have you contemplating the meaning of life
When Winston Niles Rumfoord flies his spaceship into a chrono-synclastic infundibulum he is converted into pure energy and only materializes when his waveforms intercept Earth or some other planet. As a result, he only gets home to Newport, Rhode Island, once every fifty-nine days and then only for an hour.
But at least, as a consolation, he now knows everything that has ever happened and everything that ever will be. He knows, for instance, that his wife is going to Mars to mate with Malachi Constant, the richest man in the world. He also knows that on Titan – one of Saturn’s moons – is an alien from the planet Tralfamadore, who has been waiting 200,000 years for a spare part for his grounded spacecraft . . .
Readers love The Sirens of Titan:
‘A truly exceptional work by a truly exceptional author expressing some exceptionally powerful ideas’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘Vonnegut uses the absurd to explore what makes us human . . . I recommend this book for any fan of Vonnegut or [Douglas] Adams’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘The Sirens of Titan is primarily a parody of trashy pulp science fiction novels, a boisterous, chucklesome book . . . In this sense, The Sirens of Titan, twenty years early, precedes and foreshadows (and, I would say, is superior to) Douglas Adams’s The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘There are plenty of space travels in The Sirens of Titan but it isn’t a space opera . . . It is a spaced out satire, a cosmic comedy of manners‘ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘I went into this expecting a science fiction/satire but instead I got an emotionally moving story about the meaning of life by none other than one of the greatest writers that ever lived. Period’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘Funny until it suddenly becomes creepy, to tell you why would be a spoiler though . . . Vonnegut is only using sci-fi as a platform to tell an allegorical story about life, together with an anti-war and anti-religion themes’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘This is not just one of Vonnegut’s best books. It’s one of the best books I’ve ever read’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
So begins one of the most celebrated stories in fantasy literature . . . packed full of mystery, deep themes and incredible prose, meet Severian the Torturer and follow him on his journey across the great world of Urth
Severian is a torturer, born to the guild and with an exceptionally promising career ahead of him . . . until he falls in love with one of his victims, a beautiful young noblewoman.
Her excruciations are delayed for some months and, out of love, Severian helps her commit suicide and escape her fate. For a torturer, there is no more unforgivable act. In punishment he is exiled from the guild and his home city to the distant metropolis of Thrax with little more than Terminus Est, a fabled sword, to his name.
Along the way he has to learn to survive in a wider world without the guild – a world in which he has already made both allies and enemies. And a strange gem is about to fall into his possession, which will only make his enemies pursue him with ever-more determination . . .
Winner of the World Fantasy Award for best novel, 1981
Winner of the BSFA Award for best novel, 1982
Readers can’t stop reading The Shadow of the Torturer:
‘Full of rich characters and great imagination’ Mark Lawrence, author of Red Sister
‘A dark jewel . . . He has a mastery of language not often seen in fantasy writing . . . Couple this with an original and unique, highly imaginative and complex worldbuilding and the high praise is warranted‘ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘This is a picaresque fantasy with a difference, for our hero Severian is no wide-eyed country boy from the shire, but an apprentice torturer, thoroughly schooled in his trade’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘There are certain books that can be considered life-changing experiences. Gene Wolfe is an author who has written one of those for me’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘The Book of the New Sun Tetralogy is one of the great achievements in science fiction and is a MUST READ for fans of the genre. HIGHEST POSSIBLE RECOMMENDATION!!!’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘In addition to being unique in style, The Shadow of the Torturer is a gorgeous piece of work: passionate storytelling (heart-wrenching in places), fascinating insights into nature and the human condition, beautiful prose’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘Genre fiction at its finest. Original, difficult and well-crafted, it is easy to see how Wolfe is regarded as a writer’s writer’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
2026: Something is growing in the Pacific Ocean.
“The Slick” appears to be a strange, fungus-like organism, but its DNA is unlike anything else on the planet.
Rumours start to fly. Was life discovered deep beneath the Martian icecaps on a recent Chinese space mission? If it was, no-one is confirming it, but could that same life now be spreading through the ocean and threatening Earth’s entire food chain?
Brilliant scientist Dr. Mariella Anders is recruited to join an urgent NASA mission to Mars to see if she can uncover the truth of this organism, but this is no straightforward investigation. Corporate powers are committed to exploiting the secrets of the Slick for profit; radical eco-terrorists strike out against rampant genetic engineering; and a second Chinese mission to Mars at the same time has its goals shrouded in mystery.
The secret of life on Earth and Mars might be found on the red planet, but who can Mariella trust with the truth once it’s found? And what price will she have to pay for it?