Sunday, 10 March 2013


Brian Aldiss and Harry Harrison edited Farewell, Fantastic Venus, containing "The Big Rain," from the Psychotechnic future history, and "Sister Planet," a non-series story, by Poul Anderson. Logically, this anthology should also have contained "Logic of Empire" by Robert Heinlein but Aldiss, in a bar conversation at an sf con forty three years ago, quoted Heinlein as saying, "You can't have 'Logic of Empire.' It's part of my Future History!'"

There could be a similar, though perhaps shorter, anthology for Jupiter, containing at least:

"Bridge" by James Blish, part of the Cities In Flight future history;
"Desertion" by Clifford Simak, part of the City future history;
"Skeleton Men of Jupiter" by Edgar Rice Burroughs, part of the John Carter series;
"Call Me Joe" by Poul Anderson, non-series.

Arthur C Clarke wrote a short story about a cyborg exploring a gas giant but I cannot remember what it was called, where it was published or which gas giant it was.

Anderson also touched on Jupiter in:

"Hunters of the Sky Cave," part of the Technic Civilization future history;
"Que Donn'rez Vous?," part of the Flying Mountains future history;
Three Worlds To Conquer, non-series -

- so an Anderson Jupiter collection could be compiled from these works.

It is on my agenda to reread "Call Me Joe." "Desertion" is similar but lacks Anderson's grasp of science. Simak's characters can transform a human body into a Jovian body and back again, which can only mean destroying a human body, creating a Jovian body with the human body's memories, then reversing the process. If they command that much knowledge and energy, then surely they do not need to send transformed beings to explore the Jovian environment?

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