As is evident from his many thrilling novels, Alan Dean Foster is a master at creating other worlds in an array of genres. Now he turns his imagination to the short story in these spectacular tales of outer space, cyberspace, ancient gods, modern demons and mortal horror, including:
The Panhandler – A predatory lawyer encounters a fabled boyhood hero and falls victim to the less innocent intrigues of eternal youth.
Growth – Not even his minidrag Pip can save Flinx from the overly intimate advances of an intruder who goes entirely too far.
Basted – A lowly, hen-pecked Egyptian discovers that the Pharaoh’s tomb holds exactly what he needs for a whole new life.
The Killing of Bad Bull – A man with a knack for getting gambling’s one-armed bandits to give it up finds himself at the top – of several hit lists.
At Sea – A poor Scandinavian captain forced into running drugs is shown a way out of his desperate straits with the help of five beautiful blondes who are simply out-of-this-world.
One morning in 1995, Jonah Ransom, clothier, is going about his everyday business when he meets a beautiful demon in his storecupboard. At around the same time, the King of England with his entire court, vanishes abruptly before the astonished eyes of his public as he prepares to attend Mass. Even in an England where the Reformation failed, and magic has become a commonplace tool of the all-powerful Catholic Church, such events could be described as unusual.
Before long, it is apparent that something very different is abroad – magic ceases to work in its accustomed way, instability and political unrest threaten to disrupt a society used to order and rigid social obedience. Eventually the Pope is sufficiently perturbed to send one of his beloved (by him) and dreaded (by the public in general) Sicarii to investigate the disturbance. Arriving late on the scene, Adam (he has no other name), Sicarii extraordinaire, sometime spy, sometime security officer, sometime assassin, discovers a mystifying, malicious power at work, a power that can twist not only souls, but his entire world inside out.
Amongst the gorse and the heathers of his native highlands, Skelter the mountain hare enjoyed an idyllic life: browsing and gambolling; taking in the superb scenery and making female friends, including the beautiful Rushie. Then one day Skelter’s life of ease came to an abrupt end. Netted and captured, he and several other hares are transported hundreds of miles, to the strange lands of the south, destined for the cruel sport of hare coursing. Amidst a hell of shouting men and howling greyhounds, Skelter witnesses a nightmare, before making a miraculous escape.
Alone, stranded in a landscape he does not understand, Skelter must learn to survive, despite the hostility and distrust of the local hares and other natural hazards.
By far the most horrifying peril that faces Skelter is the florge: a vast, flying monster which is terrorising the countryside, killing indiscriminately.
Raised in isolation by a man, thousands of miles from his native habitat, Bubba is a killer more terrifying than any natural creature: for he believes himself human. Can one small mountain hare survive against such a monster?
The planet Arcadia was on the verge of economic collapse. Its human colony had been decimated by the strange Relay Effect; in the aftermath, still more colonists were leaving for other worlds. The Hetherington Organisation promised to change that. If the remaining colonists put themselves entirely in their hands for a five-year period, they would transform Arcadia into the most prosperous planet settled by mankind, while preserving its great natural beauty.
It was an offer the Arcadians could not possibly refuse, for the alternative, after all, was an accelerating slide into poverty and, eventually, savagery. Only when the Hetherington Organisation’s first cargo ships arrived, unloading a huge stream of brontomeks – huge robot agricultural machines, heavily armoured – and an army of amorphs, aliens who were capable of moulding themselves into human form, did the colony begin to realise what it had committed itself to.
Brontomek! is a sequel to two earlier books, Syzygy and Mirror Image. Like it’s predecessors it is an ingenious, adventurous tale of the type which has rapidly made Coney one of SF’s foremost entertainers.
Brontomek! won the 1977 BSFA award for best novel.
The beautiful Dedo Nyneve’s innocent tales of a land called Camelot have spawned a real-life cast determined to choose their own fates, yet each move draws them closer to catastrophe. And as the many happentracks of the universe narrow to a dangerous few, the actions of every sorcerer, man, and living creature will determine whether the great god Starquin lives or dies.
For the first time in remembered history, humans and gnomes find themselves sharing the same Earth happentrack. But King Arthur has larger concerns as he watches the society he rules spiralling toward ultimate destruction. Little does he know that the evil Mogan Le Fay has been working her treacherous magic to split the happentracks wide open – a deadly betrayal that could spell the end of Camelot.
With the ma possible futures swiftly shrinking to one last destiny too awful to contemplate, courageous Fang the gnome joins forces with Arthur and Nyneve to manipulate history in a final confrontation of wills and worlds. The last move is Fang’s, as he unravels the strands of time to keep his clan from the brutal vision of Starquin’s end.
Catherine Wilder was a strange girl, lovely but lonely. Sir Henry Wilder, her father, was the kind of eccentric, medical researcher who preferred to work in complete isolation. Catherine withdrew deeper into herself as the oppressing loneliness of her father’s remote mansion weighed upon her mind.
When she first heard the voice she wondered whether the mansion was haunted, then she feared for her sanity. But it was neither madness nor the supernatural which threatened her.
Mezak appeared to her suddenly in the twilight of the mansion’s gloomy corridors. He was more romantic than her wildest dreams. Although some of his language was beyond her understanding at first, it gradually became possible for them to communicate. Mezak was from the future, the remote future, but Catherine slowly realised that she was in love with him! Her father’s strange research into super-freezing and suspended animation gave her only a remote chance of reaching him, but she was prepared to take that chance. As Catherine placed herself in the freezing chamber, numbness and darkness crept over her…. Would she ever open those beautiful eyes again?
‘The mouth was redder than ever, for on the lips were gouts of fresh blood, which trickled from the corners of the mouth and ran over the chin and neck – It seemed as if the whole awful creature were simply gorged with blood; he lay like a filthy leech, exhausted with his repletion.’
When Jonathan Harker visits Transylvania to help Count Dracula purchase a London house he is disturbed by the horrifying discoveries he makes in his client’s castle. But worse, Harker’s actions introduce Dracula to London. Soon afterwards, the Count embarks on a reign of seduction and terror. And all, it seems, who encounter the charismatic Eastern European aristocrat – a succession of madmen, physicians and beautiful women – are never seen in daylight again…
Bram Stoker’s DRACULA has inspired countless movies, books, and plays since it’s first publication in 1897. Few, if any, have been fully faithful to Stoker’s original, best-selling novel of mystery and horror, love and death, sin and redemption. But in DRACULA, Stoker created a new word for terror, a new myth to feed our nightmares, and a character who will outlive us all.
In another sparkling and slightly askew adventure in the mode of Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams and Jack Vance, Fools Errant’s Filidor Vesh sashays once more through the penultimate age, finding that love is a many splintered thing.
The dandified Archon’s apprentice is literally bowled over by beautiful Emmlyn Podarke — she knocks him flat and steals his credentials, daring him to pursue her to a remote and mostly forgotten corner of Old Earth. Now Filidor must cope with philosophical pirates, prophet-seeking aliens, light-fingered mummers, and a tiny, bothersome voice in his left ear. Meanwhile, the Archon may or may not have been kidnaped, and somebody’s digging up a mysterious ancient artefact buried on the Podarke family farm.
Praise for Matthew Hughes:
“Matthew Hughes does Jack Vance better than anyone except Jack himself” – George R.R. Martin
“Heir apparent to Jack Vance” – Booklist
“Hughes’s boldness is admirable”- New York Review of Science Fiction
“Hughes effortlessly renders fantastic worlds and beings believable”- Publishers Weekly
“A towering talent”- Robert J. Sawyer
“A treasure” – David Gerrold
Killed by the power of the god Zezeth, his true father, Lionwolf has been cast into a bleak and icy hell lit just by a cold blue sun. Here he and others of the living dead must wage endless combat and war, to appease the whim of a deathly King whose face is made of stone. But when Lionwolf encounters the King’s wife, she is none other than the beautiful, god-fashioned Chillel, his own former lover – and nemesis.
As Lionwolf struggles in the toils of Hell, elsewhere in the hell-cold ice-age of the mortal earth, men and women work out their own destinies. An empire has fallen. Ru Karismi, Capital of the Kings, has been abandoned to the poisons of the White Death. Reivers cross the lands of the Jafn and the Ruk, preying wherever they wish.
Against this unsettled backdrop, Jemhara the sorceress determines to save the Magician Thryfe from a dire self-inflicted punishment, and Saphay, now a goddess of the far north, seeks to lead her people to a new world.
Yet Seseth’s violent hadred shadows all – and from the depths of an ice-locked sea his other terrifying son, the mountainous whale-leviathan Brightshade, is once more rising for vengeance…
‘You will be a King, and Great King, and then you will Die, and you may not avoid that destiny, try as you may¿’
Two-thirds god, one-third human, Gilgamesh is a giant among men and a formidable warrior, even as a boy. When his father the king of Rurk dies, Gilgamesh is forced into exile by the newly crowned Dumuzi, jealous of his prowess and fearful of his intentions.
In neighbouring Kis his fighting skills are honed to perfection, and when in time Dumuzi dies, Gilgamesh returns to be proclaimed king by the wily priestess Inanna, goddess of beauty. Together they rule Uruk, and prosperity descends upon the land.
However, the kingship is not enough to satisfy Gilgamesh’s gargantuan appetite for adventure, and his boredom is only relieved by the coming of Enkidu, a strange wild man who proves the king’s equal in combat. The two become closer than brothers, but when Gilgamesh incurs the wrath of Inanna, the gods conspire to tear them apart, and for Gilgamesh all that remains is his search for immortality.
In retelling the legend of the great Sumerian monarch, Robert Silverberg brings all his superb storytelling powers to a mesmerising tale of ambition, power and obsession, against the background of an ancient and fearsome world.
THE MINDSTONES were the only reason anyone lived on – or more accurately, in – the planet Styx. An unthinkable ice world, Styx only survived as an underground mining colony because of the discovery of the beautiful jewel called Cyrilite, a crystalline stone with unique mind-altering properties.
But to Kayla John Reed, Styx was all the home she’d ever knownuntil her parents were killed in a tragic mining accident. Claiming her father’s Guild seat, the extraordinarily gifted young empathy was forced to flee the planet when she tangled with the Kellers, the wealthiest and most important psi family in the colony.
On the run in a galaxy wary of anyone with mind powers and all too willing to turn her in for the bounty on her head, Kayla found an unexpected haven aboard Falstaff, a “merchant” spaceship that stretched the limits of legal shipping beyond the breaking point. But there were those among the crew with a far more treacherous agenda than simple privateering, and Kayla was soon caught in a planets-spanning struggle between two deadly forces ready to sacrifice anyone who got in their way and determined to use any weapon – even the power of Kayla’s mind – to secure total victory…
Kirk Hammond was a man alone.
He had been chosen to ride in the first manned satellite to go out around the Moon and back to Earth. But when the satellite failed to orbit properly, it went on past the Moon into the vastness of outer space, and a whole world watched helplessly as he was borne toward an unthinkably lonely death.
Yet destiny decreed that Kirk Hammond should suffer, not death but a pseudo-death. And he awoke from it to find that a hundred centuries had passed and that the space age which had begun in the 20th Century had now grown into a vast galactic civilization that had carried the sons of Earth to countless stars and worlds. But, unexpectedly, the conquest of space had changed Man himself, and the human race had become not one but several species.
Hammond was plunged into the climactic struggle between the new races. And in his quest with a desperate band for the mysterious Star of Life that was the key to the struggle, in his relations with the strange and beautiful Thayn Marden who was not a human woman, in his odyssey through the mighty suns and earthly worlds of the galaxy, a man of the 20th Century found himself facing the dangers of the great space age which he himself helped pioneer.
Thomas Jerome Newton is an extraterrestrial from the planet Anthea, which has been devastated by a series of nuclear wars, and whose inhabitants are twice as intelligent as human beings.
When he lands on Earth – in Kentucky, disguised as a human – it’s with the intention of saving his own people from extinction. Newton patents some very advanced Anthean technology, which he uses to amass a fortune. He begins to build a spaceship to help the last 300 Antheans migrate to Earth.
Meanwhile, Nathan Bryce, a chemistry professor in Iowa, is intrigued by some of the new products Newton’s company brings to the market, and already suspects Newton of being an alien.
As Bryce and the FBI close in, Newton finds his own clarity and sense of purpose diminishing.
Inspiring adaptations starring David Bowie and Chiwetel Ejiofor, The Man Who Fell To Earth brought Walter Tevis wide recognition and critical acclaim. It was nominated for the Hugo award, and the 1976 film was nominated for the Nebula, Saturn and Hugo awards.
‘Beautiful science fiction’ – New York Times
‘This is one of the finest science fiction novels of its period’ – J.R. Dunn
‘Tevis writes . . . with power and poetry and tension’ – Washington Post
Welcome to The Best Of The Masterworks: a selection of the finest in science fiction
Cora Caley – A woman of fantastic beauty and wealth. A woman who had been denied nothing. Now her most incredible enterprise had been completed. She had transformed acres of Australia’ hot and arid desert into lush greenery and in its midst had built The House – a house of unequalled grandeur. And to crown her latest and most splendid achievement she was going to be hostess for the perfect party. She had spared nothing to ensure absolute elegance and lavishness for her guests.
Yet, as the party began Cora felt a tremendous sense of failure (she knew Plan X would most assuredly have to be instituted). The party was failing, but only because it somehow seemed to culminated the terrible vacuum of Cora’s own life. She was doomed to emptiness and she was terrified.
As the party progresses she is confronted by ex-husbands, former lovers, her sister, her daughters, servants and to all she seems on the verge of madness. Maybe she is, but then again maybe her own realization of the sterility of her life is her one sane thought – maybe it is her lifeboat.
Weaving through reality and fantasy, Cora reveals herself as Everywoman struggling not only for happiness and love, but for the certainty of her own definite and meaningful character.
Where the moon washed the deck, something sat, its huge head raised, more like the visage of a bear than a wolf, yet long-snouted, the jaws open. Cold eyes that had no soul in them mirrored the moon…
After the killing of his brutal father, golden and handsome Daniel Vehmund has sought refuge in an exotic faraway land. But his contentment is shattered when a fabulous diamond is pressed on him by a sinister graverobber. From that first fatal contact, Daniel is doomed each night of the fill moon to become something else…something dark and powerful and savage. And nothing that originates on this earth can destroy him.
Laura, a beautiful redhaired farm-girl, lives with her two awful sisters and her selfish grasping parents in the remote English countryside. Apparently condemned to a life of drudgery, all is transformed when she is wooed and wed by a wealthy local squire. But this gilded existence is threatened when a travelling magician persuades her besotted husband to buy from her a very unusual diamond. For this gem is “The Wolf”, the diamond that had transformed Daniel Vehmund’s destiny. And when he himself returns at last to England, his fate and Laura’s are devastatingly intertwined…
Meanwhile some dark, malignant presence continues to prowl the woodlands and hedgerows…and seemingly nothing can curb its unquenchable bloodlust.
Set in Sagramanda, a city of one hundred million, this is the story of Taneer, a scientist who has absconded with his multinational corporation’s secret project code and who is now on the run from both the company and his father. Depahli, the fabulously beautiful woman from the “untouchable” class, would die for him, just as surely as his father would like to kill him for shaming his very traditional family with such a relationship. Chalcedony “Chal” Schneemann doesn’t want to kill Taneer, if he doesn’t have to, but it wouldn’t upset him terribly much if it came to that, and he’ll stop at nothing to recover the stolen property from the company that pays him very, very well to solve big problems discreetly and quickly. Sanjay Ghosh, a poor farmer-turned-merchant in the big city of Sagramanda, would like to help Taneer unload his stolen items for the thirty million dollars his 3 percent fee is worth. Jena Chalmette – the crazy French woman pledged to Kali – simply wants to kill for the glory of her god, and she’s very good at it. Chief inspector Keshu Singh would like to put this sword wielding serial killer away as quickly as possible before the media gets ahold of the story.
Then there’s a man-eating tiger that’s come in from the nearby jungle reserve, just looking for his next meal.
The Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Greece and Rome had returned to Earth – with all their awesome powers intact. Overnight, Earth was transformed. War on any scale was outlawed, along with boom-and-bust economic cycles, and prudery. No change was more startling than the face of New York, where the Empire State Building became the Tower of Zeus.
In this totally altered world, William Forrester is an acolyte of Athena, Goddess of Wisdom, and a teacher of history. Only Maya Wilson, one of his students and a worshipper of Venus, Goddess of Love, had a different sort of grading in mind. Maya is the first of the many Trials of Forrester, every bit as mighty and perilous as the Labors of Hercules. In love with Gerda Symes (like him, a devotee of Athena and a frequenter of the great Temple of Pallas Athena – formerly known as the 42nd Street Library) and dedicated to the pleasures of the mind – Forrester falls under the soft, compelling pressure of soft, compelling devotees of Venus and Bacchus. He’s going to be in need of all the strength that he and his Goddess, the beautiful and intellectual Athena, can muster!
Into this sensuous strife stride the Temple Myrmidons – religious cops sworn to obey orders without question or hesitation – with a pickup order for William Forrester. Where he is taken, what happens to him, and the truly fantastic discoveries he makes about himself and the Gods and Goddesses … here are the ingredients that make up this science fiction novel of suspense, intrigue, mystery and danger!
Seven billion years from now, long after the Sun has died and human life itself has become extinct, alien beings reincarnate humanity from our fossilized DNA drifting as debris in the void of deep space. We are reborn to serve as bait in a battle to the death between the Rimstalker, humankind’s reanimator, and the zotl, horrific creatures who feed vampire-like on the suffering of intelligent lifeforms.
The reborn children of Earth are told: “You owe no debt to the being that roused you to this second life. Neither must you expect it to guide you or benefit you in any way.” Yet humans choose sides, as humans will, participating in the titanic struggle between Rimstalker and zotl in ways strange and momentous.
Author’s Note: The volumes of this series can each be read independently of the others. The feature that unifies them is their individual observations of science fiction’s sub-genre: “space opera,” which the editors David G. Hartwell and Kathryn Cramer define as “colorful, dramatic, large-scale science fiction adventure, competently and sometimes beautifully written, usually focused on a sympathetic, heroic central character and plot action, and usually set in the relatively distant future, and in space or on other worlds, characteristically optimistic in tone. It often deals with war, piracy, military virtues, and very large-scale action, large stakes.”
Tarra Khash is a Hrossak, a barbarian from the steppes beyond the River Luhr. A fearless adventurer, Tarra roves Theem-hdra in search of his next fortune, his next drink, and warm, willing females to share his bed. The Hrossak is a most fortunate man, for he has faced more than one god during his travels and – so far – has escaped unscathed.
Seeking to avenge the murder of a beautiful young woman of the half-mystical Suhm-yi race, Tarra joins forces with her husband, now the last of his kind. Each worships a moon-god, and together their faith and Tarra’s weapons wreak a terrible vengeance on those who stole the treasure of the Suhm-yi.
Eager for wealth, Tarra is trapped by a wily old man who has lured him into plumbing the depths of a treasure-filled cavern guarded by golden statues of the Great God Cthulhu. But Cthulhu’s treasure is not easily plundered, and Tarra nearly loses his life to the monstrous forces of the Elder God.
Many men have met the lamia Orbiquita, but none have lived to tell of her extraordinary powers of love-making – until Tarra Khash, who treats her as a woman wants to be treated and thus earns her forgiveness and his life. Alas, others who assume her to be weakened by her love for Tarra Khash are not so lucky!
It was the End of Summer of the year 2035. The Global Village that was the World was ruled by a Kangaroo Court of Compassionate Aldermen who ordered assassinations when it was deemed to be for the common good. As a sign of their openness, they were always experimenting to find new ways of looking at the World. Most of these experiments would would fail; some of them would succeed to an extent; and others would succeed only too well, and so would have to be crushed in the shell for the good of the World.
The Lynn-Randal Experiment raised three children together almost from infancy. Of these three, Lord Randal was human (though somewhat enhanced and tampered with). Axel belonged to the gargoyle-faced ‘Golden People’ (‘God believes they are the most beautiful creatures he ever made,’ a theologian said, ‘and there will be hell to pay when he founds out that we don’t agree.’). And the third child was Inneal who often elicited the comment ‘she’s really something different, isn’t she!’ Yes, she was. All of these were super-mega-persons, which meant that they might be able to change the world itself. But why did they begin to change the Ocean first?
When these three were just short of ten years old, they were merged with children of three other experiments, and formed with them a Magic Dozen. Immediately they began to have an astonishing effect on the World. And the fave of the children themselves hung in the balance.
Was the experiment too successful? Was their effect on the World too dangerous? Would their group be, as other groups had been, adjudged to be a ‘Serpent’s Egg‘ that had to be crushed in the shell for the good of the world?
The Three Days of Summerset, the End of Summer, would give the answer.
When Meg Frazer’s actress mother is killed in a Hollywood accident, nineteen-year-old Meg finds it hard to adapt to life in Britain with her cold, distant father . . . and at night she is haunted by a strange dream of a face which she is sure has something to do with her past.
Meg follows a clue from the past to a remote Cornish Village. There she becomes involved in a nightmare web of terror and suspense . . . She meets a young man called Toby, who is different from her staid fiancé, but how is he wrapped up in the secrets she is unravelling?
First written as a short suspense story in the 1960’s, this YA romantic thriller went on to win an Edgar Allan Poe Award from the Mystery Writers of America for Joan Aiken in 1972
“A cunning thriller romance, with the ever popular suspense and terror… good holiday reading for the not so bookish” Elaine Moss, Times
“Young, beautiful, talented, engaged to a handsome and successful stockbroker, she should have been content to stay in London. But irresistibly Meg was drawn back to Penlaggen…back into a forgotten past… And waiting for her was a man who exercised a strange and fearful power over her…and a secret that led her ever closer to danger” Fiction Database
“The suspense is wonderfully sustained and leads to a terrifying climax, and there is even a satisfying love story” Publisher’s Weekly
“A dream has haunted nineteen-year-old Meg for ten years, ever since her mother’s death. Now engaged and determined to exorcise the dream before her marriage, Meg drives to the remote Cornwall village of Penleggen where the author’s gift for direful scene and gripping incident takes control…the physical danger mounts as Meg’s psychological mystery is solved and a literate thriller gathers momentum” Kirkus review
The son of a Civil War veteran, Edgar Rice Burroughs was a prolific writer for the early pulp magazines. Famous the world over as the creator of Tarzan – and in SF circles for his Martian tales featuring John Carter – Burroughs is a household name. But John Carter wasn’t the only Earthman to champion another world. This omnibus collects PIRATES OF VENUS, LOST ON VENUS and CARSON OF VENUS – the first three of Burroughs’ classic pulp tales of Carson Napier on the waterworld of Amtor – better known to us as Venus.
PIRATES OF VENUS: The shimmering, cloud-covered planet of Venus conceals a wondrous secret: the strikingly beautiful yet deadly world of Amtor. In Amtor, cities of immortal beings flourish in giant trees reaching thousands of feet into the sky; ferocious beasts stalk the wilderness below; rare flashes of sunlight precipitate devastating storms; and the inhabitants believe their world is saucer-shaped with a fiery center and icy rim. Stranded on Amtor after his spaceship crashes, astronaut Carson Napier is swept into a world where revolution is ripe, the love of a princess comes at a dear price, and death can come as easily from the blade of a sword as from the ray of a futuristic gun.
LOST ON VENUS: Napier’s adventures continue in this pulse-pounding sequel to PIRATES OF VENUS. Here the intrepid and wry explorer takes on a savage world in order to rescue the princess from her sworn enemies. Napier’s epic quest for Duare takes him through the streets of the City of the Dead, into the terrifying Room of the Seven Doors, and face to face with fantastic and perilous creatures. LOST ON VENUS brims with the action, suspense and wit unique to the Master of Adventure.
CARSON OF VENUS: 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.
The Strugatsky brothers’ poignant and introspective novel of first contact that inspired the classic film Stalker
Red Schuhart is a stalker, one of those strange misfits who are compelled by some unknown force to venture illegally into the Zone and, in spite of the extreme danger, collect the mysterious artefacts that the alien visitors left scattered around. His life is dominated by the Zone and the thriving black market in the alien products. Even the nature of his daughter has been determined by the Zone. And it is for her that Red makes his last, tragic foray into the hazardous and hostile depths.
Readers can’t stop thinking about Roadside Picnic:
‘A story of a horrific yet fascinating place, a story of an ordinary and unlikable man just trying to get by, a philosophical interlude on humanity and its significance or lack thereof, of greed and wonder, and the fever dream of the soul scream. It still speaks to me‘ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘Such an intriguing setting for me, such an unusual take on alien interaction‘ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘It is a thought-provoking, hard-to-put down masterpiece, most probably the best introduction to Soviet science fiction. A must read for any sci-fi fan’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘A fantastic and creative exploration of what first contact might be like’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘The tone of the book is akin to that of some noir works, dark, gritty, getting darker and grittier as the tale wears on . . . Like many great books, the meaning of the ending is left up to the reader’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘A beautifully depressive and wonderfully atmospheric science fiction novel about life on Earth after an alien “Visitation” that leaves humans with more questions than answers . . . Once I started reading it today, I couldn’t stop. The story captured my heart and held my attention’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘This is the sort of book that you read and then immediately feel the need to lend it to someone you know so that they can experience and enjoy it themselves . . . I was truly astonished-by both the poignancy and the deceptive(?) simplicity of this relatively short novel’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
The book that reinvented Space Opera. The Canterbury Tales in space – from the Hugo and World Fantasy Award-winning author of The Terror, which is now a chilling TV show.
It is the 29th century and the universe of the Human Hegemony is under threat. Invasion by the warlike Ousters looms, and the mysterious schemes of the secessionist AI TechnoCore bring chaos ever closer.
On the eve of disaster, with the entire galaxy at war, seven pilgrims set fourth on a final voyage to the legendary Time Tombs on Hyperion, home to the Shrike, a lethal creature, part god and part killing machine, whose powers transcend the limits of time and space. The pilgrims have resolved to die before discovering anything less than the secrets of the universe itself.
Readers are hooked on Hyperion:
‘His narrative is beautifully written . . . I couldn’t stop reading. The payoff is totally worth it, as each story unfolds another facet of this incredible universe Simmons has created’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘One of the best epic, old mythology, and literature inspired, mindblowing, amazingly ingeniously written space operas‘ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘The scope of imagination, wordplay, and critical analysis of humankind is astounding . . . this is a story-driven narrative, and the stories that we’re given are well worth the entry into a brave, new, unfamiliar world‘ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘Hyperion has that indescribable, almost lovecraftian terror, dread and brooding present throughout’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘The superb use of the pilgrim’s story telling device, that not only pushes the main story on, but seamlessly provides the depth and vibrancy to lay out this reality to the reader in such a simple, yet compelling way’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘Imagine a universe where the Earth has been destroyed and humanity is spread out across hundreds of planets. Combine the artful poetry of John Keats with a science fiction retelling of the Canterbury Tales . . . what you have is Hyperion. A masterpiece of literature‘ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
‘A science fiction classic . . . If you count yourself an sf fan you need to read this. If you just want to read a damn good book this is also for you‘ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐