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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 27 June 2022
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King, Stephen

(1947-    ) US author, in the context of this encyclopedia of greatest interest as a central creator of Horror in SF, though he is perhaps most famous for his supernatural horror. With over 300 million books in print in a career that only effectively began in 1974, the example of his success, along with that of Dean Koontz, revolutionized the horror-fiction business, though the feverish over-expansion of horror as a market up to around 1990, and its subsequent deflation, ...

Mystery of the Third Planet

Russian animated film (1982; vt The Secret of the Third Planet; vt Alice and the Mystery of the Third Planet). Original title Tayna tretyey planety. Based on the novel Puteshestviye Alisy ["Alice's Travels"] (in Devotchka S Zemli omni 1974; vt Alisa's Travels) by Kir Bulychev. Soyuzmultfilm. Directed by Roman Kachanov. Written by Kir Bulychev. Voice cast includes Vladimir Druzhnikov, Nikolai Grabbe, Olga Gromova, Vsevolod Larionov, Vasily Livanov, Pyotr Vishnyakov and Yuri Volyntsev. 48 ...

Buckner, M M

(?   -    ) US author and environmental activist (she has done work for the World Wildlife Fund) whose first three sf novels are set on an exceedingly grim but realistic planet Earth, though her excessively intricate plotting tends to divert attention from the harshness of the Near Future/moderately distant future she posits. HyperThought (2001) and War Surf (2005) – the latter won the Philip K Dick Award for 2006 – are closely linked. An ...

Vance, Steve

Working name of US author Steven Edward Vance (1952-    ), who has since the late 1980s focused largely on horror novels, though he began writing with some unremarkable but competently conceived sf adventures, including Planet of the Gawfs (1977), a Planetary Romance intended to be comic; All the Shattered Worlds (1980), a Space Opera; and The Hybrid (1981), an Apes as Human/Mutant tale. Later novels include The Hyde Effect (1986); The Asgard Run (1990), about a shipwrecked ...

Smith, E E

(1890-1965) US food chemist specializing in doughnut mixes, and author, often called the "Father of Space Opera"; because Hugo Gernsback appended "PhD" to Smith's name for his contributions to Amazing from 1928, he also became known as "Doc" Smith. Greatly influential in US Pulp-magazine sf between 1928 and about 1945, he found his reputation fading somewhat after the end of World War Two, when it seemed the dream-like simplicities of his world-view could no longer attract the modern reader of ...

Clute, John

(1940-    ) Canadian critic, editor and author, in the UK from 1969; married to Judith Clute from 1964, partner of Elizabeth Hand since 1996. His first professional publication was the long sf-tinged poem "Carcajou Lament" (Winter 1960 [ie Autumn 1959] Triquarterly), though he only began publishing sf reviews in 1964 and sf proper with "A Man Must Die" in New Worlds for November 1966, where much of his earlier criticism also appeared. This criticism, despite some studiously ...

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