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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.

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Westward, Elton

House Name for the UK publisher Brown, Watson, several nonfantastic titles under this name being written by John Russell Fearn. Return to Mars (1954) – in which Mars is found abandoned by its native inhabitants, but conspiracies and Monsters breed all the same – was not. [JC]

Ross, Olin J

(1858-1941) US author of The Sky Blue: A Tale of the Iron Horse and of the Coming Civilization (1904), in which, by virtue of railroads (see Transportation), a new civilization is created in the Near Future. [JC]

Wright, Helen S

(1958-    ) UK author whose A Matter of Oaths (1988) engagingly presents a familiar sf character – the Amnesiac protagonist who experiences flashback hints of a destiny larger than any of those around him dare contemplate – within a cogently described post-Cyberpunk frame dominated by The Guild of Webbers, Starship pilots who link two corrupt Galactic Empires, each ruled by an immortal emperor (see Immortality). The protagonist is Black; the covers for both ...

Higginson, Thomas Wentworth

(1823-1911) US minister, soldier, Feminist, poet and author, now best remembered for his friendship with and mentoring of Emily Dickinson (1830-1886), and for his partial recognition of her genius. He is also remembered as an abolitionist who served as colonel of the 1st South Carolina Volunteers (1862-1864), a Black regiment that (because of the racist code then legally enforced) could not be commanded by a Black man; his Army Life in a Black Regiment (1870; rev 1890) is an important and ...

Magriska, Countess Hélène

Pseudonym of UK romantic novelist Enid Florence Brockies (1911-1943), a singer and actress who turned to writing as Countess Hélène Magriska. Her Ten Poplars (1937) has a science-fictional McGuffin, a mysterious Ray that can be used to restore the health and appearance of those advancing in age (see Rejuvenation). The main thrust of the story is the romantic triangle created by an ageing Hollywood actor who comes seeking treatment, the doctor who has discovered the ray and her ...

Nicholls, Peter

(1939-2018) Australian editor and author, primarily a critic and historian of sf through his creation and editing of The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction [see below]; resident in the UK 1970-1988, in Australia from 1988; worked as an academic in English literature (1962-1968, 1971-1977), scripted television documentaries, was a Harkness Fellow in Film-making (1968-1970) in the USA, worked as a publisher's editor (1982-1983), often broadcast film and book reviews on BBC Radio from 1974 and ...



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