SF Masterworks

Happy Birthday, Maureen F. McHugh!

Today is Maureen F. McHugh’s birthday. Nominated for an impressive sixty-one awards, she’s best-known for the extraordinary debut novel, China Mountain Zhang, which was shortlisted  for the Hugo and Nebula Awards and wonof the James Tiptree Memorial Award, the Locus Award for best first novel, the Gaylactic Spectrum Award and the Lambda Award. It is a […]

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On This Day: Jerry Yulsman

Writer and photographer Jerome (Jerry) Yulsman was born on this day in 1924. Beginning his career as a military photographer, Yulsman served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during the Second World War, earning a Distinguished Flying Cross. He returned to New York as a freelance photographer, chronicling the cultural rebellion and renaissance of post-war […]

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Happy Birthday, Karen Joy Fowler!

The list of authors who are equally acclaimed from within the genre and by the mainstream literary establishment is a short one (an oversight that is almost – but not entirely – a one-sided affair). There’s J.G. Ballard, of course, and his friend Michael Moorcock; there’s Ursula K. Le Guin and Doris Lessing; Iain (M.) […]

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Happy Birthday, Gregory Benford!

Gregory Albert Benford was born on this day in Mobile, Alabama, in 1941. A leading writer of Hard SF, he received a BSc in physics from the University of Oklahoma, followed by an MSc and PhD from the University of California, San Diego. His breakthrough novel, Timescape, won both the Nebula and John W. Campbell […]

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Masterworks Spotlight: The War of the Worlds

No one would have believed, in the last years of the nineteenth century, that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man’s and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinized and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man […]

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Gateway Essentials: Robert A. Heinlein

So where, one might ask, does one start with Robert A. Heinlein? Well, frankly, you could start just about anywhere! Heinlein won the Hugo Award four times for best novel (for Double Star, Starship Troopers, Stranger in a Strange Land and The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, since you ask) during his lifetime and added […]

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Gateway Essentials: Greg Bear

It could be argued that, if you are the recipient of five Nebula Awards, and two Hugos, and have been nominated for, or won, SF awards a staggering eighty-seven times, that all of your works are essential, but as that argument would rather undercut the subject of this post, we’re going to ignore it like […]

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Masterworks Spotlight: The Invisible Man

The stranger came early in February, one wintry day, through a biting wind and a driving snow, the last snowfall of the year, over the down, walking from Bramblehurst railway station and carrying a little black portmanteau in his thickly gloved hand. He was wrapped up from head to foot, and the brim of his […]

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On This Day: Walter M. Miller, Jr. Died

On this day, in 1996, the body of Walter M. Miller, Jr was discovered, at his home in Florida (according to The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction; other sources place the date earlier). He took his own life, shortly after the death of his wife, Anna. Miller was never prolific, publishing only about  three dozen stories […]

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From the Archives: SF Masterwork of the Week: Doomsday Book

Connie Willis has accumulated an extraordinary 11 Hugo and 7 Nebula Awards during her glittering career. She has twice won the Hugo and Nebula with the same book – in 2010 with Blackout/All Clear, and before that in 1992 with our SF Masterwork of the Week, Doomsday Book. For Kivrin Engle, preparing an on-site study […]

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From the Archives: SF Masterwork of the Week: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral Arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun. Orbiting this at a distance of roughly ninety-two million miles is an utterly insignificant little blue-green planet whose ape-descended life forms are so amazingly primitive that they still think digital watches […]

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From the Archives: Greg Bear’s EON: A Review by Stephen Baxter

President of the BSFA and multi-award-winning author, Stephen Baxter, offers his thoughts on Greg Bear’s 1985 Big Dumb Object novel, Eon . . . In 2005, after the observation of a supernova-like burst of energy, an asteroid shows up in Earth orbit. Humanity is locked in a continuing Cold War between US and USSR, and […]

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From the Archives: Joe Abercrombie on Fritz Leiber

So, you may have noticed a certain amount of Joe Abercrombie-ish activity over at our sister imprint, Gollancz. Quite understandable given that Joe’s destined-to-be-bestselling new novel, Red Country is published tomorrow (original post 17/10/2012). But while our colleagues are proclaiming (quite rightly) the muscular virtues of his new book, we thought we’d take a moment […]

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From the Archives: Six Degrees of Separation: The Beatles to SF Gateway

It comes to our attention that 50 years ago today (originally published 5/10/2012), musical legends The Beatles released their first single, Love Me Do. Now, we at SF Gateway are as ardent fans of The Fab Four as the next sentient carbon-based lifeform, but it didn’t strike us as particularly relevant to classic science fiction […]

Related Categories: Commentary, Whimsy

Masterworks Spotlight: Limbo

To my mind, Bernard Wolfe remains one of the most remarkable, original writers of the twentieth century When no less a judge than Harlan Ellison – himself certainly one of the most remarkable, original writers of the twentieth century – offers such heady praise, it would be wise to listen. So listern we did, and […]

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