Stay gathers together 100,000 words of reviews, plus short fiction by John Clute, and was originally published to coincide with Loncon3 (the 2014 World Science Fiction Convention) at which he was one of the Guests of Honour.
Also included is a complete reprint of the text of The Darkening Garden.
In the huge termite-hills of cities that dotted the dead world of Killibol it seemed that nothing could ever change. Each city was enclosed and self-sustaining, in a stasis fixed by the one reality of power: the protein tanks in which organic nutrients could be processed to provide food.
But gang-leader Becmath was a man with a vision: to build an empire for himself without breaking this stasis. His lieutenant Klein recognised Becmath’s genius and stayed faithful to him even when they were forced to travel Killibol’s arid surface in a desperate search for the lost gateway to Earth. He stayed faithful through murder, treachery and countless adventures. Only when Becmath’s schemes reached incredible fulfilment was he able to realise that he had been serving an egomaniac and a monster . . .
There is only one Jenna Starborn . . .
A baby harvested from the gen-tanks on the planet Baldus.
A girl scorned by the only family she has ever known.
A woman bold enough to seek her own way, strong enough to stay true to herself, and brave enough to follow her heart – wherever in the universe it may lead her . . .
Life on Earth was intolerable – and yet Man had stayed there, his dreams and potential suffocating under the dead weight of bureaucracy.
The stars were attainable – thanks to the Infall Drive – but only a few heard the call of deep space. Some had already gone to colonise a new world. The second ship was ready at last. Ready to escape the Earth’s prison; ready to seek refuge in deepest space. But it wasn’t only freedom that awaited it…
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.
Is the story of 21st Century Earth – a world where work is forgotten, where the masses fight boredom with trank pills and telly, and where it is almost impossible to leave the social class you were born in. You could break the class barrier only by hiring yourself out as a mercenary to fight in the prime-time wars that are fought to keep the telly-viewing public satisfied. That is the only way to move up the ladder – if you could stay alive long enough.
Carson Napier, first Earthman to reach Venus, had to keep alert every instant of his stay on that world of mist and mystery. For its lands were unmapped, its inhabitants many, varied, and strange, and he had taken an obligation to restore a native princess to her lost homeland. On terrible oceans where dreaded sea-monsters dwelled, in deep forests where terror haunted every branch, and behind the walls of eerie cities where power-mad chieftains plotted uncanny schemes, “Carson of Venus” is fast-paced science fiction adventure.
An urgent message from Pellucidar, that world of primitive men and primeval jungles that lies inside the crust of the Earth, called on Tarzan of the Apes for assistance.
Tarzan, used to the dangers of darkest Africa, heeded the call to Pellucidar, where all his skill in the jungle, all his talents with beasts and primitive men, would be put to the extreme test. For in that land at the Earth’s core, under the eternal day of the Central Sun, his terrific talents were needed just to stay alive – let alone to fulfil the mission that had called him there!
GUNS WERE ILLEGAL
Unless you were a member of Category Military, no one on Earth could own a gun. So who was shooting at Joe Mauser? And why?
He’d been a mercenary, but he’d been thrown out when he saved Field Marshal Cogswell’s life. Whose enemies were after him now – his own, or Cogswell’s?
In a world where the computers kept track of you, Mauser had to disappear – and stay alive long enough to reach the Field Marshal!
Fenris isn’t a hell planet, but it’s nobody’s bargain. With 2,000-hour days and an 8,000-hour year, it alternates blazing heat with killing cold. A planet like that tends to breed a special kind of person: tough enough to stay alive and smart enough to make the best of it. When that kind of person discovers he’s being cheated of wealth he’s risked his life for, that kind of planet is ripe for revolution.