Friday, 25 November 2016

An Ultimate Novel

In an ultimate novel, one character would in each chapter travel to a different part of the megamultiverse and somehow intervene in events although without compromising the integrity of each narrative as historical fiction, fantasy, sf etc. Trygve Yamamura, the hero of three detective novels, touches on fantasy in one short story.

Who are the mysterious characters of literature? Why did the Time Traveler's dinner guests include the Silent Man? Who was the man in grey that bought the Crystal Egg? Who was the young man that followed Jesus when he was arrested but ran away naked leaving his linen cloth behind?

DC Comics has a sort of supernatural Lone Ranger called the Phantom Stranger (see here) who appears when needed but disappears as quickly. He is an immortal, a neutral angel, the Wandering Jew, an immortal time traveler...speculative origins. The Stranger, if no one else, would be able to access Poul Anderson's immutable timelines.

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

The Yamamura short story touching on fantasy is "Dead Phone." And I can't help wondering if Anderson's "The Corpse In A Suit Of Armor" is another Yamamura story. It's one of the uncollected, and at risk of being lost, stories of Poul Anderson.

An even more mysterious text in Scripture would be John 21.20-23, quoted by Poul Anderson in Chapter XXV of OPERATION CHAOS. The narrator, Steven Matuchek, said he did not understand that text and doubted any commentator truly did. It was, of course, used by the diabolically founded Johannine Church to falsely justify its claim to supplanting the Petrine Christians.