Saturday, 6 August 2016

Confessional And Veldt

In Island in The Sea Of Time, SM Stirling does not give us an easy ride to a happy ending:

first we think that Walker will survive to be a continuing villain in the trilogy;

then we think that he will die in combat with Alston;

then we think that Alston and Swindapa might die as well;

then we find out what happens.


first we think that Alston and Swindapa will return to Nantucket;

then we think that Swindapa will remain in the White Isle;

then we wonder if both will remain;

then we find out what happens.

Now I await Volume II, to arrive by post.

The following passage, written about The Sandman, is equally applicable to blogging about Poul Anderson and related writers:

"...Neil Gaiman's stories in The Sandman descend concentrically through a narrative maze to a room at the center, where you expect to find a confessional and instead step into a veldt that stretches as far as the eye can see."
-Steve Erickson, Introduction IN Neil Gaiman, The Sandman: Dream Country (New York, 1995), pp. 7-9 AT p. 8.

Next, let's have an overview of time travel fiction written by, at least, HG Wells, CS Lewis, Robert Heinlein, Poul Anderson and SM Stirling.


Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

I agree, about Stirling's use of complex and ingenious twists and turns of plot.

I have not read many of Jules Verne's proto-SF works, just TWENTY THOUSAND LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA and FROM THE EARTH TO THE MOON, but he too is considered one of the founders of SF (alongside Mary Shelley and H.G. Wells). And his novel JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH belongs more to the lost world/lost race subgenre of "science/fantasy." Moreover, I would classify Verne's SF as directly ancestral to the Hard SF form of that genre.


Paul Shackley said...

However, Verne did not write any time travel.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

True! That was one of the advances, innovations, and contributions made by H.G. Wells.