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Welcome to the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Fourth Edition. Some sample entries appear below. Click here for the Introduction; here for the masthead; here for Acknowledgments; here for the FAQ; here for advice on citations. Find entries via the search box above (more details here) or browse the menu categories in the grey bar at the top of this page.

Site updated on 23 May 2022
Sponsor of the day: Andy Richards of Cold Tonnage Books

Christchild, Ravan

(1938-    ) Pseudonymous US teacher and author (later a vicar) resident in the UK from 1971; his only sf book, The Agonies of Time (stories January-March 1977 Vortex; coll of linked stories 1989), comprises three tales, featuring Steve Mitchell, which utilize Time-Travel tropes to examine extreme psychological states. The twentieth century is seen, in terms reminiscent of Michael Moorcock's Multiverse, as a series of loosely adjacent Alternate Histories. [JC]

Packard, Frank L

(1877-1942) Canadian author known almost exclusively for the Jimmy Dale the Gray Seal sequence of thrillers, beginning with "The Gray Seal" (May 1914 People's Magazine), which was later assembled with other stories as The Adventures of Jimmie Dale (coll of linked stories 1917), several further volumes following until 1935. With his secret identity, his "Fortress of Solitude", his hidden wealth, his moral imperatives and his remarkable physical skills, Jimmy Dale combines elements of still ...

Morgan, Edwin

(1920-2010) Scottish poet, active from the mid 1930s; ranked somewhere above George Mackay Brown or Edwin Muir (1887-1959), and just below the pre-eminent Hugh MacDiarmid, in the pantheon of twentieth-century poets in Scotland. Though much of the work of many contemporary poets can be understood as cognate or intimate with Fantastika as a whole, Morgan is unusual among writers of the first rank to have written more than a few poems of direct sf interest, some – like "In Sobieski's ...

Killer Shrews, The

Film (1959; vt Attack of the Killer Shrews). Hollywood Pictures Corporation/McLendon-Radio Pictures Distributing Corporation. Produced by Gordon McLendon and Ken Curtis. Directed by Ray Kellogg. Written by Jay Simms from his original story. Cast includes James Best, Ken Curtis, Alfredo DeSoto, "Judge" Henry Dupree, Ingrid Goulde, Baruch Lumet and Gordon McLendon. 69 minutes. Black and white. / Private cargo sailor Thorne Shipman (Best) and his first mate (Griswold) deliver supplies to an ...

Core, The

Film (2003). Paramount Pictures in association with MFO Munich Film Partners. Directed by Jon Amiel. Written by Cooper Layne, John Rogers. Cast includes Aaron Eckhart, Delroy Lindo, Hilary Swank and Stanley Tucci. 135 minutes. Colour. / Although it might seem like an update of Journey to the Center of the Earth (1959), The Core owes its plot and style to 1990s Disaster movies like Armageddon (1998). A motley crew of Scientists and astronauts must burrow their Underground vessel into the ...

Robinson, Roger

(1943-    ) UK computer programmer, bibliographer and publisher, active in UK Fandom for many years. The Writings of Henry Kenneth Bulmer (1983 chap; rev 1984 chap) is an exhaustive Bibliography of one of the most prolific sf writers, and Who's Hugh?: An SF Reader's Guide to Pseudonyms (1987) is similarly exhaustive in its listing of Pseudonyms. Criticized at first for its failure to annotate its findings – so that, for instance, pseudonyms used for sf could not be ...

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