Spinrad examines one of his most compelling obsessions – the possible “futures” of America. Street Meat: In New York City, streeties, zonies and subway cannibals are locked in a nighmarish scrabble for rat meat, sex – and survival. The Lost Continent: group of African tourists visit the ruins of Space Age America – a surreal landscape of abandoned skyscrapers, empty streets and dead, rusted machinery. World War Last: The hashish-smoking Sheik of Koram has a plan to trick America and Russia into war. La Vie Continue: In Paris exiled science-fiction author Norman Spinrad ignores a lucrative – but dangerous – bidding war between the KGB and the CIA for the film rights to his story “Riding the Torch”.
Capturing a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the world of science fiction, this unique autobiography by Robert Silverberg shows how famous stories in this genre were conceived and written. Chronicling his career as one of the most important American science fiction writers of the 20th century, this account reveals how he rose to prominence as the pulp era was ending-and the genre was beginning to take on a more sophisticated tone-to eventually be named a Grand Master by the Science Fiction Writers of America.
Justin’s having the worst trip ever. He and his mother are Time Traders, traveling undercover to different alternate realities of Earth so they can take valuable resources back to their own timeline. In some of these worlds, Germany won World War I or the world has been destroyed by nuclear warfare. Justin and his mother are in an America that never became the United States: each state is like a country, and many of them are at war with one another. Their mission takes them to Virginia, which is on the verge of bloody violence with Ohio. Beckie is from California and, like the rest of her world, is unaware that Time Traders exist. The only reason she’s in small-town Virginia is because her grandmother dragged her there to visit old relatives. Beckie is just as horrified by the violence and racism of the alternate Virginia as Justin is, and the two are drawn to each other. But when full-fledged war breaks out between Ohio and Virginia, including a biologically designed plague, will either of them manage to get back home? Forget about home: will they make it out alive?
This collection by Lucius Shepard, one of the most exciting new writers to emerge in the 1980s, includes the eponymous story ¿Barnacle Bill the Spacer¿, about an attempted mutiny on a space station, which won the Hugo Award, as well as ¿Sports in America¿, about a man who finds out just how far he is willing to go when he is hired by a local crime boss to kill a man. In ¿All the Perfumes of Araby¿ a small-time smuggler is granted a vision of the future that compels him to change his life, while ¿Human History¿ is a post-apocalyptic adventure story with a hint of decadence. ¿The Sun Spider¿ is a romance of sorts, with a decidedly gothic twist, while in ¿Beast of the Heartland¿, a boxer at the end of his career is lured back into the ring with the promise of one last big payoff. And anyone who has ever completely lost themselves in a piece of music will recognise the inspiration for ¿A Little Night Music¿. Shepard’s stories are not just wonderfully three-dimensional characters dealing with life-changing events; they are filled with colours, textures, sounds and smells, as he describes his backgrounds with as much care as a master painter.
A short story collection from one of SF’s greatest authors, featuring her most successful character in the title piece. The other stories include ‘Woe, Blight and, in Heaven, Laughs’, ‘Gordon’s Women’, ‘The Message’, ‘Heads Africa, Tails America’ and ‘The Pollyanna Enzyme’.
America, 1984 – not our version of America, but an America that calls itself the Real, an America in which the invention of Turing Gates has allowed it access to sheaves of alternate histories. For ten years, in the name of democracy, the Real has been waging clandestine wars and fomenting revolution, freeing versions of America from communist or fascist rule, and extending its influence across a wide variety of alternate realities. But the human and political costs have proven too high, and new President Jimmy Carter has called an end to war, and is bringing troops and secret agents home. Adam Stone is called out of retirement when his former comrade, Tom Waverly, begins to murder different versions of the same person, mathematician Eileen Barrie. Aided by Waverly’s daughter, Linda, Adam hunts for his old friend across different sheaves, but when they finally catch up with Waverly, they discover that they have stumbled into the middle of an audacious conspiracy that plans to exploit a new property of the Turing Gates: it will change not only the history of the Real, but that of every other sheaf, including our own. Cowboy Angels combines the high-octane action and convoluted plots of the TV series 24 in a satirical, multi-layered alternate reality thriller.
A runaway planet hurtles toward the earth. As it draws near, massive tidal waves, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions wrack our planet, devastating continents, drowning cities, and wiping out millions. In central North America a team of scientists race to build a spacecraft powerful enough to escaped the doomed earth. Their greatest threat, they soon discover, comes not from the skies but from other humans.
Meet Qua, the quantum computer with the immense power capabilities that tunes into pathways in parallel universes to operate at lightning speed. But with such power comes the threat of catastrophe, and as government agents, cult disciples, and computer criminals learn what this computer is capable of, Cambridge researcher Clare Conway makes every attempt to safeguard herself and society from the realities she discovers about Qua. For all of the power this computer offers, it threatens to spark a civil war in America, a danger unlike any other that history has ever known.
Without setting foot on another planet, people like Shep Blaine were reaching out to the stars with their minds, telepathically contacting strange beings on other worlds. But even Blaine was unprepared for what happened when he communed with the soul of an utterly alien being light years from Earth. After recovering from his experience, he becomes a dangerous man: not only has he gained startling new powers – but he now understands that humankind must share the stars. Hunted through time and space by those who he used to trust, Blaine undergoes a unique odyssey that takes him through a nightmarish version of small-town America as he seeks to find others who share his vision of a humane future. Blaine has mastered death and time. Now he must master the fear and ignorance that threatened to destroy him!
The 22nd century, 150 years after the Dust War destroyed America’s Mid-West, and much else besides. California is a last outpost for survival and reclamation during a long epidemic of all-purpose despair. The extraordinary cult of ‘Tumbonde,’ a former taxi driver its prophet and leader, predicts the imminent arrival on earth of ‘Gods’ from the stars. The movement grows daily. Tom O’Bedlam, an apparent madman, prey since childhood to visions which seem to confirm ‘Tumbonde,’ goes even further. He can, he will, help others to make the Crossing. If the world doesn’t go too man too soon. If well-meaning ‘rationalists’ don’t lock him away . . .