(1877-1936) US explorer, translator and author of much magazine fiction between 1901 and 1935; of more than 330 published stories so far traced, five were full-length sf novels in serial form, and many individual tales were sf, starting with his first work of genre interest, "The Time-Reflector" for The Monthly Story Magazine in September 1905, about the Invention of a Time Viewer device. His work appeared predominantly in Frank A Munsey's magazines, where he was one of the more popular writers of the pre-1926 period, ranking as the closest rival in sf to Edgar Rice Burroughs. His stories were occasionally derivative: his serial "The House of Transmutation" (September-November 1909 The Scrap Book, often incorrectly given as "The House of Transformation") is reminiscent of H G Wells's The Island of Dr Moreau (1896), and his short story "The Thing from – 'Outside'" (April 1923 Science and Invention) echoes Algernon Blackwood's "The Willows" (in The Listener and Other Stories, coll 1907).
Several themes recur in his writings. Immortality and the elixir of youth (> Rejuvenation) appear in his Lost-World serial "Beyond White Seas" (December 1909-May 1910 All-Story) and in another serial, "The Elixir of Hate" (August-November 1911 Cavalier), which presents more sophisticated characterization and ethical analysis than appears elsewhere in his Pulp-magazine work. Socialist thought, in the mode of Jack London, shapes the anticapitalist stances of The Air Trust (January-October 1915 The National Rip-Saw as "The Story of the Air Trust"; 1915) and The Golden Blight (18 May-22 June 1912 Cavalier; 1916); the first is centred on a cartel's monopoly on oxygen, the second concerns a Ray that temporarily changes gold to ash (> Transmutation). The latter has strong racist overtones, as does his most popular work, a long Post-Holocaust novel, Darkness and Dawn (January 1912-July 1913 Cavalier as three separate serials, "Darkness and Dawn" [January-20 January 1912], "Beyond the Great Oblivion" [4 January-8 February 1913] and "The Afterglow" [14 June-5 July 1913]; fixup 1914; rev 5vols as Darkness and Dawn 1964, Beyond the Great Oblivion 1965, The People of the Abyss 1966, Out of the Abyss 1967, and The Afterglow 1967); much of the racism was purged from the 1960s multi-volume version by Robert A W Lowndes, working for the publisher. The tale begins a millennium or so hence as two survivors of an unspecified Disaster awaken from Suspended Animation to find New York a ruin; even the Statue of Liberty has lost her torch. The male protagonist undertakes a Last Man tour of the shambles; but he and his female partner soon begin to act like Adam and Eve before discovering (and defeating) the sub-human inhabitants of the Ruined Earth (> Devolution).
Other works of interest include The Empire in the Air (14 November-5 December 1914 All-Story Cavalier Weekly; 2006), a serialized novel of Invasion by immaterial beings from the fourth Dimension, who establish a Pax Aeronautica; and "June 6, 2016" (22 April 1916 Collier's), a short story with elaborate future gadgetry and a feminist twist. The Flying Legion (15 November-20 December 1919 All-Story Weekly; 1920) is a heist story of the Near Future involving advanced weaponry and the theft from Mecca of Islam's most sacred relic, in a misguided attempt to reform that religion. "The Fatal Gift" (4-25 September 1915 All-Story Weekly), a serial, deals with the production of an excessively beautiful superwoman by plastic surgery. Lesser works are: "The Lunar Advertising Co, Ltd" (August 1906 The Gray Goose; vt "A Message from the Moon: The Story of a Great Coup", April 1907 Pearson's), in which Advertising matter is reflected from the Moon; "My Time Annihilator" (June 1909 All-Story), ostensibly about Time Travel to the past but really about madness; "He of the Glass Heart" (May 1911 Cavalier; vt "The Man with the Glass Heart" in The Fantastic Pulps, anth 1975, ed Peter Haining), featuring an artificial heart; and "Drops of Death" (January 1922 Munsey's), a scientific detective story. "The Tenth Question" (18 December 1915 All-Story Weekly), a mathematical puzzle story (> Mathematics), was later rewritten by and credited to Stanley G Weinbaum as "The Brink of Infinity" (December 1936 Thrilling Wonder). England remained active as a writer after 1922 or so, but wrote very little further sf. [JE/EFB/JC]
see also: Cities; Dystopias; Evolution; History of SF; Invisibility; Money; Monsters; Politics; Villains.
George Allan England
born Fort McPherson, Nebraska: 9 February 1877
died Concord, New Hampshire: 26 June 1936
works (sf and fantasy only)
- Out of the Real (New York: The Winthrop Press, 1914) [story: chap: first published in Munsey's Magazine, January 1914: pb/]
- Darkness and Dawn (Boston, Massachusetts: Small, Maynard, 1914) [fixup: first appeared January 1912-July 1913 Cavalier as three separate serials, "Darkness and Dawn" (January-20 January 1912), "Beyond the Great Oblivion" (4 January-8 February 1913) and "The Afterglow" (14 June-5 July 1913): hb/P J Monahan]
- Darkness and Dawn (New York: Avalon Books, 1964) [rev of "Darkness and Dawn", part one of above: hb/Gray Morrow]
- Beyond the Great Oblivion (New York: Avalon Books, 1965) [rev vt of first half of "Beyond the Great Oblivion", part two of above: hb/Gray Morrow]
- The People of the Abyss (New York: Avalon Books, 1966) [rev vt of second half of "Beyond the Great Oblivion", part two of above: hb/Gray Morrow]
- Out of the Abyss (New York: Avalon Books, 1967) [rev of first two-thirds of "Out of the Abyss", part three of above: hb/Michael M Peters]
- The Afterglow (New York: Avalon Books, 1967) [rev vt of final third of "Out of the Abyss", part three of above: hb/Michael M Peters]
- The Air Trust (St Louis, Missouri: Phil Wagner 1915) [first published January-October 1915 The National Rip-Saw as "The Story of the Air Trust": illus/hb/John Sloan]
- The Golden Blight (New York: The H K Fly Company Publishers, 1916) [first appeared 18 May-22 June 1912 Cavalier: hb/John Sloan]
- Cursed (Boston, Massachusetts: Small, Maynard, 1919) [hb/]
- Keep Off the Grass (Boston, Massachusetts: Small, Maynard, 1919) [hb/]
- The Flying Legion (Chicago, Illinois: A C McClurg, 1920) [first appeared 15 November-20 December 1919 All-Story Weekly: hb/P J Monahan]
- The Empire in the Air (Normal, Illinois: Black Dog Books, 2006) first appeared 14 November-5 December 1914 All-Story Cavalier Weekly: [pb/Joel Naprstek]
about the author
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