Sunday, 15 April 2018

The Saint And Tomorrow

Please bear with me while I read one or two Saint stories to find out whether any interesting comparisons are to be made with David Falkayn, Dominic Flandry or anyone else. Leslie Charteris' Introductions are humorous, sometimes hilarious, reflections on life, literature, publishing and change.

Tomorrow I will be with my good Buddhist friend from Birmingham, all day, morning, afternoon and evening, so the number of blog posts is very likely to be zero, like when I have a day trip to London.

Meanwhile, we are - or at least I am - still rereading Anderson's Technic History while awaiting his The Complete Psychotechnic History, Volume III, and Volume I of a new alternative history trilogy by SM Stirling.

So we continue to move backwards, forwards and sideways in time.

12 comments:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Your first paragraph made me regret not having read some of Leslie Charteris' stories long ago!

You have been commenting lately on all but one of the four post-Imperial stories in the Technic History, "A Tragedy of Errors." That happens to be the one I'm rereading. Am I right to think you will be soon discussing that story.

And I too look forward to reading Stirling's new novel, BLACK CHAMBER, due out at the beginning of July.

Sean

Paul Shackley said...

Sean,
Yes. I expect to reread "Starfog," then "A Tragedy of Errors," but also to follow any unexpected digressions.
Paul.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Good! I appreciate your digressions!

Sean

S.M. Stirling said...

I'll be interested to see what you think of BLACK CHAMBER, since it's an alternate history that's heavily espionage/mystery in orientation.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Dear Mr. Stirling,

And I'm VERY keen on reading BLACK CHAMBER! Too bad I have to wait till July! (Smiles)

I have recently reread your A TAINT IN THE BLOOD. Gruesomely, grimly fascinating! And I took special note of how the Shadowspawn were behind the Black and hence the assassination of Francis Ferdinand in 1914. WW I and its awful consequences seems to have been when your Shadowspawn first started controlling the world.

Sean

S.M. Stirling said...

Sean: I'd always wondered why, if there were secretly people with superpowers around, they didn't control the world. In that series I solved the problem simply: they -did- control the world.

Not very well, but then, they're malevolent, often lazy, and not necessarily smarter than other people. When you can read minds and predict the future and walk through walls and make people drop dead by thinking about it, you don't -have- to be very efficient.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Dear Mr. Stirling,

Even your Draka were better than the Shadowspawn! The Draka at least put a premium on intelligence and being competent, even if they used that intelligence and competence in often hideous ways.

I've thought of your Shadowspawn books as the true, LITERALIZED fears of paranoid conspiracy theorists. Science fiction for the kind of people who look for plots under every bed.

Sean

S.M. Stirling said...

Sean: Science fiction ofthe "literalizes the metaphor". Here I was doing that with traditional fantasy tropes; I took the 'scientific' explanation from Jack Williamson's classic DARKER THAN YOU THINK (heavily recommended, by the way) and extrapolated.

For example, the genetics of reproduction -- the way genes match or don't -- is heavily probabilistic, so if you had mental control of probabilities, you could manipulate breeding well.

And if the Shadowspawn are the source of legends of vampires, werewolves, evil magicians and so forth... well... that's logical i there's a subspecies that evolved to be predators on humans.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Dear Mr. Stirling,

Cool! And I would like to have known more about the first Empire of the Shadowspawn and how it was eventually overthrown by humans at merely a Stone Age level of technology.

If I wanted to be paranoid, I would start wondering if there actually are people like the Shadowspawn NOW, in our real history.

Sean

S.M. Stirling said...

The paranoia is part of the point... 8-).

S.M. Stirling said...

By the way, for those who can take it, sample chapters of BLACK CHAMBER are available at smstirling.com

Sean M. Brooks said...

Dear Mr. Stirling,

Careful, or you will have me becoming paranoid! (Smiles)

I've been to your website many times and I noticed that. But I prefer not to read sample chapters from your books till I can get copies of the complete books. I do occasionally leave comments in the various comboxes.

Sean