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Published over 100 years ago, this is one of Wells's greatest novels, and the only one of his scientific romances to embrace space travel.
Thanks to the discovery of an anti-gravity metal, Cavorite, two Victorian Englishmen travel to the Moon, where they encounter the extraordinary underground world of the Selenites, insect-like aliens living in a rigidly organised hive society.
The commander of the Earthpeople's Alliance journeyed into the bizarre depths of Transport Town to seek Rydra Wong, the cosmic poetess whose words reached across space and whose mind could perceive the meaning of all the world's tongues. And his request placed her into the heart of the vile interstellar war between the Alliance and the Invaders.
The new weapon of the Invaders was Babel-17, a menacing hum clogging up Alliance space communications. Rydra had to decipher the communications power of Babel-17 before it could lead to intergalactic defeat. And to do that, she would have to be the target of the next outer-space attack.
H. G. Wells' terrifying classic tale of science run amok
Edward Prendick is shipwrecked and finds himself stranded on an island in the Pacific. Here he meets the sinister Dr. Moreau, a vivisectionist driven out of Britain in disgrace. Strange events soon cause Prendick to uncover the full horror of Dr Moreau's activities on the island. This science fiction classic mixes discussion on the divide between humans and the animal kingdom and chilling macabre horror in an unrivaled fashion. Its questions about how far science should go will ring as true today as they did when it was first published in 1896.
The only book ever to win both the British Science Fiction Association Award and the Arthur C. Clarke Award—now back in print
A fast-moving space adventure featuring mysterious aliens, a journey to a depopulated planet, a mad run from space cops, a ship captain in trouble, and her AI (Artificially Intelligent) companion/ship's computer. It is carnival time on Mars, but Tabitha Jute isn't partying. She is in hiding from the law, penniless, and about to lose her livelihood and her best friend, the space barge "Alice Liddell." Then the intriguing Marco Metz offers her some money to take him to Plenty, and the adventure begins.
Cover Artist: Karel Thole
From Connie Willis, winner of multiple Hugo and Nebula Awards, comes a comedic romp through an unpredictable world of mystery, love, and time travel...
Ned Henry is badly in need of a rest. He's been shuttling between the 21st century and the 1940s searching for a Victorian atrocity called the bishop's bird stump. It's part of a project to restore the famed Coventry Cathedral, destroyed in a Nazi air raid over a hundred years earlier.
But then Verity Kindle, a fellow time traveler, inadvertently brings back something from the past. Now Ned must jump back to the Victorian era to help Verity put things right--not only to save the project but to prevent altering history itself.
Originally published in 1955, Jack Finney's sinister SF tale has outgrown the initial debate about whether it satirized Communism or the conformity of US society at the time, to become a classic of paranoia; an examination of our fear of 'the other'. Most people know the story from seeing THE INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, the classic 1978 remake (one of the few Hollywood remakes said to better than the original, made in 1956) starring Donald Sutherland. Here's your chance to read the original source; a story that has resonated with readers and viewers for more than 50 years.
The city is winched along tracks thru a devastated land full of hostile tribes. Rails must be freshly laid ahead of the city & carefully removed in its wake. Rivers & mountains present nearly insurmountable challenges to the ingenuity of the city's engineers. But if the city does not move, it will fall farther & farther behind the optimum & into the crushing gravitational field that has transformed life on Earth. The only alternative to progress is death. The secret directorate that governs the city makes sure that its inhabitants know nothing of this. Raised in common in creches, nurtured on synthetic food, prevented above all from venturing outside the closed circuit of the city, they're carefully sheltered from the dire necessities that have come to define human existence. Yet the city is in crisis. People are growing restive. The population is dwindling. The rulers know that, for all their efforts, slowly but surely the city is slipping ever farther behind the optimum. Helward Mann is a member of the city's elite. Better than anyone, he knows how tenuous is the city's continued existence. But the world he's about to discover is infinitely stranger than the strange world he believes he knows so well.
In Hellstrom's Hive, winner of the 1978 Prix Apollo, Frank Herberts vivid imagination & brilliant view of natural ecology has never been more evident.
America is a police state & it's about to be threatened by the most hellish enemy in the world: insects.
When the Agency discovered that Dr. Hellstrom's Project 40 was a cover for a secret laboratory, a special team of agents was immediately dispatched to discover its true purpose & its weaknesses.
What they discovered was a nightmare more horrific & hideous than even their paranoid government minds could devise.
A mysterious disaster has stricken the midwestern American city of Bellona, and its aftereffects are disturbing: a city block burns down and is intact a week later; clouds cover the sky for weeks, then part to reveal two moons; a week passes for one person when only a day passes for another. The catastrophe is confined to Bellona, and most of the inhabitants have fled. But others are drawn to the devastated city, among them the Kid, a white/American Indian man who can't remember his own name. The Kid is emblematic of those who live in the new Bellona, who are the young, the poor, the mad, the violent, the outcast--the marginalized.
Dhalgren is many things, but instantly accessible isn't one of them. While most of this big, ambitious, deeply detailed novel is beautifully pellucid, the opening pages will be difficult for some: the novel starts with the second half of an incomplete sentence, in the viewpoint of a man who doesn't know who he is. If you find the early pages rough going, push on; the story soon becomes clear and fascinating. But - fair warning - the central nature of the disaster, of its strange devastations and disruptions, remains a puzzle for many readers, sometimes after several readings.
Written against the background of the rise of Nazism, War With the Newts concerns the discovery in the South Pacific of a sea-dwelling race, which is enslaved and exploited by mankind. In time they rebel, laying siege to the strongholds of their former masters in a global war for supremacy. R.U.R., or Rossum's Universal Robots, seen by many as a modern interpretation of the 'golem' myth, is regarded as the most important play in the history of SF. It introduced the word 'robot' and gave the genre one of its most enduring tropes.
Rogue Moon is a short sf novel by Algis Budrys, published in 1960. It was a 1961 Hugo Award nominee, losing to Walter M. Miller's A Canticle for Leibowitz. A novella-length version of the story was included in the anthology The Science Fiction Hall of Fame, Volume 2, edited by Ben Bova.
Before 1969, every science fiction writer wrote his or her own version of the first Moon landing. Few carry the horror of Budrys' unsettling story.
During all recorded history, the Moon has hovered above our heads, a timeless symbol for lovers' ecstasy. Goddesses & Gibson Girls have tripped the light fantastic of her beams while sonneteers & scientists have scanned her changing phases.
Now humans had actually reached the Moon, & on it the explorers found a structure, a formation so terrible & incomprehensible that it couldn't even be described in human terms. It was a thing that devoured people; that killed them again & again in torturous, unfathomable ways.
Earthbound are the only two men who could probe the thing: Al Barker, a homicidal maniac, whose loving mistress was death, & Dr. Edward Hawks, a scientific murderer, whose greatest mission was rebirth.
The war had been going on for nearly a year and the Sirian Empire had a huge advantage in personnel and equipment. Earth needed an edge. Which was where James Mowry came in.
If a small insect buzzing around in a car could so distract the driver as to cause that vehicle to crash, think what havoc one properly trained operative could wreak on an unsuspecting enemy. Intensively trained, his appearance surgically altered, James Mowry is landed on Jaimec, the 94th planet of the Sirian Empire. His mission is simple: sap morale, cause mayhem, tie up resources, wage a one-man war on a planet of eighty million.
In short, be a wasp.
First published in 1957, WASP is generally regarded as Eric Frank Russell's finest novel, a witty and exciting account of a covert war in the heart of enemy territory.
'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...' So begins H. G. Wells' classic novel in which Martian lifeforms take over planet Earth. As the Martians emerge, they construct giant killing machines - armed with heatrays - that are impervious to attack. Advancing upon London they destroy everything in their path. Everything, except the few humans they collect in metal traps. Victorian England is a place in which the steam engine is state-of-the-art technology and powered flight is just a dream. Mankind is helpless against the killing machines from Mars, and soon the survivors are left living in a new stone age.
Sirius is Thomas Trelone's great experiment - a huge, handsome dog with the brain and intelligence of a human being. Raised and educated in Trelone's own family alongside Plaxy, his youngest daughter, Sirius is a truly remarkable and gifted creature. His relationship with the Trelones, particularly with Plaxy, is deep and close, and his inquiring mind ranges across the spectrum of human knowledge and experience. But Sirius isn't human and the conflicts and inner turmoil that torture him cannot be resolved.
In the twenty-second century Earth obtains limitless, free energy from a source science little understands: an exchange between Earth and a parallel universe, using a process devised by the aliens. But even free energy has a price. The transference process itself will eventually lead to the destruction of Earth's Sun—and of Earth itself.
Only a few know the terrifying truth—an outcast Earth scientist, a rebellious alien inhabitant who senses the imminent annihilation of the Sun. They know the truth—but who will listen? They have foreseen the cost of abundant energy—but who will believe? These few beings, human and alien, hold the key to Earth's survival.
Change or die. The only options available on the Durallium Company -owned planet GP. The planet's deadly virus had killed most of the original colonists-- and changed the rest irrevocably. Centuries after the colony had lost touch with the rest of humanity, the Company returned to exploit GP, and its forces found themselves fighting for their lives. Afraid of spreading the virus, the Company had left its remaining employees in place, afraid and isolated from the natives.
Then anthropologist Marghe Taishan arrived on GP, sent to test a new vaccine against the virus. As she risked death to uncover the natives' biological secret, she found that she, too, was changing, and realized that not ony had she found a home on GP -- she herself carried the seeds of its destruction.
With his face swaddled in bandages, his eyes hidden behind dark glasses and his hands covered even indoors, Griffin the new guest at The Coach and Horses is at first assumed to be a shy accident-victim. But the true reason for his disguise is far more chilling: he has developed a process that has made him invisible, and is locked in a struggle to discover the antidote. Forced from the village, and driven to murder, he seeks the aid of an old friend, Kemp. The horror of his fate has affected his mind, however and when Kemp refuse to help, he resolves to wreak his revenge.
When tombstone engraver George Paxman is offered a bargain, he doesn't hesitate. His beloved daughter gets an otherwise unaffordable survival suit to protect her from radioactive fall-out and all George has to do is sign a document admitting that, as a passive citizen who did nothing to stop it, he has a degree of guilt for any nuclear war that breaks out. George signs on the dotted line. And then the unthinkable happens.
The world and everyone in it (survival suit or not) is destroyed in a nuclear Armageddon - except for George and five others who must now face prosecution from the great mass of humanity who will now never be born. And George Paxman stands accused in the name of all the people who stood by and never raised a finger to stop the horror of nuclear war...
Philip K. Dick's classic SF novel, which was adapted as the film BLADE RUNNER.
World War Terminus had left the Earth devastated. Through its ruins, bounty hunter Rick Deckard stalked, in search of the renegade replicants who were his prey. When he wasn't 'retiring' them with his laser weapon, he dreamed of owning a live animal -- the ultimate status symbol in a world all but bereft of animal life.
Then Rick got his chance: the assignment to kill six Nexus-6 targets, for a huge reward. But in Deckard's world things were never that simple, and his assignment quickly turned into a nightmare kaleidoscope of subterfuge and deceit -and the threat of death for the hunter rather than the hunted...
A vast world where the seasons last tens of thousands of years - the classic SF epic of worldbuilding.
Childhood's End is an sf novel by Sir Arthur C. Clarke, which narrates a fictional evolution of the human species. It was originally published in 1953 but 1st appeared as a 1950 short story titled "Guardian Angel" in Famous Fantastic Mysteries magazine. The original publication is the novel after the prologue, Earth & the Overlords, with some different text in certain places. A new 1st chapter was substituted in 1990 when the Cold War ended, making the original version anachronistic. Editions since have appeared with the original opening or including both alternatives.
Giant silver ships appear above every major city in the world. The Overlords have arrived. They eliminate ignorance, disease, poverty & fear. After fifty years they also start eliminating humans.
Told with deadpan humour and bitter irony, Kurt Vonnegut's cult tale of global destruction preys on our deepest fears of witnessing Armageddon and, worse still, surviving it ...
Dr Felix Hoenikker, one of the founding 'fathers' of the atomic bomb, has left a deadly legacy to the world. For he is the inventor of 'ice-nine', a lethal chemical capable of freezing the entire planet. The search for its whereabouts leads to Hoenikker's three ecentric children, to a crazed dictator in the Caribbean, to madness. Felix Hoenikker's Death Wish comes true when his last, fatal gift to mankind brings about the end, that for all of us, is nigh ...
In this pulse-quickening novel, Alfred Bester imagines a future in which people "jaunte" a thousand miles with a single thought, where the rich barricade themselves in labyrinths and protect themselves with radioactive hit men - and where an inarticulate outcast is the most valuable and dangerous man alive. The Stars My Destination is a classic of technological prophecy and timeless narrative enchantment by an acknowledged master of science fiction.
Odd John is the story of a mutated superman - a young man who must accept that he is different, and decide what to do with his gifts.
The classic tale of the devastating consequences of playing God.
Brilliant, driven Victor Frankenstein has at last realized his greatest ambition. The scientist has succeeded in creating intelligent life. But when his creature first stirs, Frankenstein realizes he has made a monster. And, abandoned by its maker and shunned by everyone who sees it, the Doctor's creation sets out to destroy him and all that he holds dear.
Mary Shelley's FRANKENSTEIN remains one of the greatest horror stories ever written, a book that chillingly captures the unforeseen terror of playing God. And the heart-stopping fear of being pursued by a powerful, relentless killer.
Robert Neville has witnessed the end of the world. The world's population has been obliterated by a vampire virus, though Neville has somehow survived. As he toils to make sense of it all and protect himself against the hounding vampires who seek out his life force, Neville embarks on a series of projects to discover the source of the plague and hopefully put an end to the vampires.
In 1878, two young stage magicians clash in the dark during the course of a fraudulent seance. From this moment on, their lives become webs of deceit and revelation as they vie to outwit and expose one another.
Their rivalry will take them to the peaks of their careers, but with terrible consequences. In the course of pursuing each other's ruin, they will deploy all the deception their magicians' craft can command--the highest misdirection and the darkest science.
Blood will be spilled, but it will not be enough. In the end, their legacy will pass on for generations...to descendants who must, for their sanity's sake, untangle the puzzle left to them.
First published in 1991, this cyberpunk classic won the Arthur C. Clarke Award and was shortlisted for the Nebula Award Synners are synthesizers—not machines, but people. They take images from the brains of performers, and turn them into a form which can be packaged, sold, and consumed. This book is set in a world where new technology spawns new crime before it hits the streets. The line between technology and humanity is hopelessly slim; the human mind and the external landscape have fused to the point where any encounter with reality is incidental. This classic novel from one of the founders and mainstays of the cyberpunk movement.
For Kivrin, preparing an on-site study of one of the deadliest eras in humanity's history was as simple as receiving inoculations against the diseases of the fourteenth century and inventing an alibi for a woman traveling alone. For her instructors in the twenty-first century, it meant painstaking calculations and careful monitoring of the rendezvous location where Kivrin would be received.
But a crisis strangely linking past and future strands Kivrin in a bygone age as her fellows try desperately to rescue her. In a time of superstition and fear, Kivrin -- barely of age herself -- finds she has become an unlikely angel of hope during one of history's darkest hours.
Five years in the writing by one of science fiction's most honored authors, Doomsday Book is a storytelling triumph. Connie Willis draws upon her understanding of the universalities of human nature to explore the ageless issues of evil, suffering and the indomitable will of the human spirit.
From the Paperback edition.
In a distant world gods walk as men, but wield vast and hidden powers. Here they have made the stage on which they build a subtle pattern of alliance, love, and deadly enmity. Are they truly immortal? Who are these gods who rule the destiny of a teeming world?
Their names include Brahma, Kali, Krishna and also he who was called Buddha, the Lord of Light, but who now prefers to be known simply as Sam. The gradual unfolding of the story shows how the colonization of another planet became a re-enactment of Eastern mythology.
A collaborative novel from the premier cyberpunk authors, William Gibson and Bruce Sterling. Part detective story, part historical thriller, The Difference Engine takes us not forward but back, to an imagined 1885: the Industrial Revolution is in full and inexorable swing, powered by steam-driven, cybernetic engines. Charles Babbage perfects his Analytical Engine, and the computer age arrives a century ahead of its time.
Professor Redwood and Mr Bensington were unprepossessing men, leading lives of eminent and studious obscurity, scientists working away from the public gaze. Then they discovered Herakleophorbia, a substance that could nourish a possible Hercules. And became responsible for the most important development in the evolution of man. For they had found the Food of the Gods, and a new kind of human, intellectually and physically superior, became a wonderful and terrifying possibility.
The classic time travel novella that remains one of the cornerstones of science fiction literature
A Victorian scientist develops a time machine and travels to the year 802,171 AD. There he finds the meek, child-like Eloi who live in fear of the underground-dwelling Morlocks. When his time machine goes missing, the Traveler faces a fight to enter the Morlocks' domain and return to his own time. The first novel by the father of modern science fiction, this classic story has proved hugely influential.
Gateway opened on all the wealth of the Universe... and on reaches of unimaginable horror. When prospector Bob Broadhead went out to Gateway on the Heechee spacecraft, he decided he would know which was the right mission to make him his fortune. Three missions later, now famous and permanently rich, Robinette Broadhead has to face what happened to him and what he is...in a journey into himself as perilous and even more horrifying than the nightmare trip through the interstellar void that he drove himself to take.
2000 years in the future, runaway pollution has made the Earth uninhabitable except in giant biodomes. The society is an anarchy, with disputes mediated through the Machiavellian Committee for the Revolution. Mars, Venus and the Moon support flourishing colonies of various political stripes. On the fringes of the solar system, in the Gas Planets, a strange, new, violent kind of human has evolved. In this unstable system the anarchist Paula Mendoza, an agent of the Committee, works to make peace, and ultimately protect her people, in a catastrophic clash of worlds that destroys the order she knows.
Hyperion is the tale of seven people who make a pilgrimage to a terrifying creature called the Shrike in an attempt to save mankind. Stunningly written and beautifully crafted, Simmons's Hyperion resonates with technical achievement and the excitement and wonder found only in the best SF.
Walter M. Miller's acclaimed SF classic A Canticle for Leibowitz opens with the accidental excavation of a holy artifact: a creased, brittle memo scrawled by the hand of the blessed St Leibowitz, that reads: "Pound pastrami, can kraut, six bagels--bring home for Emma." To the Brothers of St Leibowitz, this sacred shopping list penned by an obscure, 20th-century engineer is a symbol of hope from the distant past, from before the Simplification, the fiery atomic holocaust that plunged the earth into darkness & ignorance. As 1984 cautioned against Stalinism, so 1959's A Canticle for Leibowitz warns of the threat & implications of nuclear annihilation. Following a cloister of monks in their Utah abbey over some six or seven hundred years, the funny but bleak Canticle tackles the sociological & religious implications of the cyclical rise & fall of civilization, questioning whether humanity can hope for more than repeating its own history. Divided into three sections--Fiat Homo (Let There Be Man), Fiat Lux (Let There Be Light) & Fiat Voluntas Tua (Thy Will Be Done)--Canticle is steeped in Catholicism & Latin, exploring the fascinating, seemingly capricious process of how & why a person is canonized.--Paul Hughes
Cover Artists: Tyler Stalman & Julyan Bayes
Contains introduction essay by Graham Sleight
Peter Sinclair is tormented by bereavement and failure. In an attempt to conjure some meaning from his life, he embarks on an autobiography, but he finds himself writing the story of another man in another, imagines, world whose insidious attraction draws him even further in...
One of the most influential anthologies of all time returns to print, as relevant now as when it
was first published Anthologies seldom make history, but Harlan Ellison's 1967 collection of science fiction stories is a grand exception. Along with Moorcock's New Worlds, it defined the New Wave movement. Dangerous Visions set an almost impossibly high standard, as more than a half dozen of its stories won major awards—not surprsing with a contributors list that reads like a who's who of 20th-century SF.
*Not to be confused with "The Rediscovery of Man: The Complete Short Science Fiction of Cordwainer Smith" — this is a collection of selected, not complete, short science fiction by Cordwainer Smith*
Welcome to the strangest, most distinctive future ever imagined by a science fiction writer. An insterstellar empire ruled by the mysterious Lords of the Instrumentality, whose access to the drug stroon from the planet Norstrilia confers on them virtual immortality. A world in which wealthy and leisured humanity is served by the underpeople, genetically engineered animals turned into the semblance of people. A world in which the great ships which sail between the stars are eventually supplanted by the mysterious, instantaneous technique of planoforming. A world of wonder and myth, and extraordinary imagination.
In consequence of a number of stunning catastrophes, Arthur Dent is surprised to find himself living in a hideously miserable cave on prehistoric Earth. And then, just as he thinks things cannot possibly get any worse, they suddenly do. Discover the origins of life on Earth - and don't be shocked if it's not what they taught you at school!
Set in a post-apocalyptic England, RIDDLEY WALKER tells the tale of one twelve year old boy and his journey through the ruins of civilisation. After the death of his father in an accident, Riddley must become a man. But his inquiring mind and strange ways set him apart from his people, and when he discovers a relic of the old time, he sets in motion a chain of events that may well lead to the end of the world (again). Written in a remarkable and rewarding language, RIDDLEY WALKER is a tour-de-force of imagination, history and psychology. Challenging and rewarding, this is a book that repays rereading again and again. There's a reason why the reviews were so good, and why so many authors cite it as an inspiration. It is, quite frankly, a masterpiece.
This is the first part of the "Forever War" series, however it can be read as a standalone.
The Forever War, winner of both Hugo and Nebula awards, is a fine choice to launch Millennium's "SF Masterworks" series of classic reissues. Future soldier William Mandella's service in the interstellar "Forever War" chillingly echoes Vietnam, where Joe Haldeman was severely wounded and won the Purple Heart. Afterwards, many real-life veterans found themselves distanced and alienated from US society: thanks to starflight's time dislocations, Mandella returns from weeks or months of combat duty to an Earth which after centuries of change is no longer his home. Though armed with increasingly futuristic weaponry--laser fingers, nova bombs, stasis fields--the infantry still suffers the long agonising waits, the sudden flurry and horror of battle, the shock of loss in a futile war without glory or glamour. But there's still room for tenderness, and for a satisfying ending as the cruel equations of relativistic time finally work in Mandella's favour. Incidentally, this is the first full British edition. When The Forever War was serialised, the magazine editor vetoed one section; it was omitted from the 1974 novel and is now restored. Highly recommended. --David Langford
Charlie Gordon, IQ 68, is a floor sweeper, and the gentle butt of everyone's jokes, until an experiment in the enhancement of human intelligence turns him into a genius. But then Algernon, the mouse whose triumphal experimental tranformation preceded his, fades and dies, and Charlie has to face the possibility that his salvation was only temporary.