Strieber, Whitley

Tagged: Author

(1945-    ) US author, much better known for horror novels – like The Wolfen (1978) (> Horror in SF; Werewolves) and the Hunger sequence beginning with The Hunger (1981) (> Vampires) – than for his sf, though he has continued to produce the latter intermittently throughout his career, with an emphasis on the Near Future seen through a perspective that sometimes attempts to justify Paranoia about government conspiracies against the American people. War Day: And the Journey Onward (1984) with James Kunetka is a remarkably detailed Post-Holocaust tour of America after a 1988 nuclear conflict. Wolf of Shadows (1985) is a Young Adult tale set in a post-holocaust Nuclear Winter. Nature's End (1986), again with Kunetka, is set in a Near-Future world devastated by Overpopulation, with a focus on Los Angeles (> California; Ecology). Communion: A True Story (1987), filmed as Communion (1989), and Transformation: The Breakthrough (1988) are represented as nonfictional accounts of Strieber's encounters with visiting Alien intelligences (> UFOs), but are listed here as fiction. Also centred on ufology is his sf novel Majestic (1989; rev 1990), whose subject is the so-called Roswell Incident of 1947 when, those who call it an "incident" claim, a UFO crashed in the New Mexico desert and the US Government created the Majestic 12 group (> Majestic), whose role was to create and maintain an extraordinary cover-up that, according to this version of reality, persists to this day. Putatively based on meticulously researched background detail, the novel incorporates – in the first edition without acknowledgement or permission – a summary derived from David Langford's spoof novel, An Account of a Meeting with Denizens of Another World, 1871 (1979) as by William Robert Loosley, edited by Langford (> Pseudoscience).

Later novels include The Grays (2006), in which Aliens control a small town, whose inhabitants they subject to experiments in Genetic Engineering; 2012: The War for Souls (2007), in which aliens threaten to bring about the End of the World on the title date; The Omega Point (2010), set slightly further into the Near Future, in a 2020 world so direly afflicted by the effects of a supernova (> Disaster) that the rich no longer safe in their Underground Keeps; and Hybrids (2011), in which Homo sapiens is threatened by aliens who have secretly interbred with us. It is not to deprecate these tales to indicate that they are sf of a very peculiar variety, consisting of sf tales whose fictionality is a mask over the truth: for the overt burden of Strieber's fiction is that it is literally true. [JC]

Louis Whitley Strieber

born San Antonio, Texas: 13 June 1945

died

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Hunger

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