Monday, 17 November 2014


The 24 works collected in Baen Books' The Technic Civilization Saga, Volumes I-III, comprise:

12 from The Earth Book Of Stormgate;
3 each from Trader To The Stars and The Trouble Twisters;
3 other novels;
3 other short stories -

- extremely comprehensive and also systematic, although the systematic numerical sequence, 12 + (4x3) = 24, is entirely fortuitous. Volumes I-III are just under half of the seven volumes of the series but collect more than half of the 43 installments of the Technic History because there are more full length novels in Volumes IV-VII.

I suggest that Volumes I-III are an Extended Earth Book Of Stormgate because, although the Earth Book ends at the mid-point of Vol III, the concluding work in Vol III, The People Of The Wind, provides the background for the Earth Book.

Most installments of the Technic History were originally published in science fiction magazines, 16 in Analog Science Fiction. Publication in anthologies or in a different kind of magazine generated other kinds of stories, presenting alternative perspectives on the History:

"How To Be Ethnic In One Easy Lesson" (Future Quest, ed. Roger Elwood, Avon, 1974);
"The Season of Forgiveness" (Boy's Life, December, 1973);
"Wingless" (Boy's Life, July, 1973);
"Rescue on Avalon" (Children Of Infinity, ed. Roger Elwood, Franklin Watts, 1973).

Thank you, Roger Elwood and Boy's Life. David Falkayn led a trader team consisting of himself, Adzel and Chee Lan and later led the colonization of Avalon. However, these four stories do not present any further adventures of Fakayn or his team. Instead, we get:

Adzel's student days;
a later incident on a planet where Falkayn had been as an apprentice;
Falkayn's grandson on Avalon;
a later incident on Avalon.

The first trader team story had mentioned some of Adzel's activities as a student on Earth. "How To Be Ethnic..." describes these activities but introduces a one-off character, James Ching, to narrate them. Although Ching, who also goes into space, is a potential series character, we do not see him again, although Hloch's introduction in the Earth Book does summarize his later career. The History becomes richer at each stage of its development.

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