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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
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Secret 6, The

Pulp Magazine. Four issues, October 1934 to April 1935, from Popular Publications. Editor: Rogers Terrill. / Written by prolific pulp author Robert J Hogan, The Secret 6 dealt with the adventures of King (no first name ever given) and his five associates, who fight crime after King has been framed for a murder. After breaking him out of Prison, the team strives to prove King's innocence while battling bizarre criminals including Mad Scientists. Among the threats they face are dogs enlarged ...

De Mendelssohn, Peter

(1908-1982) German author of Jewish birth, born Peter von Mendelssohn, whose publishing career, which began in 1930, was interrupted by exile after 1933; by World War Two he was a UK citizen, though he returned to Munich in 1970. His sf novel, Fortress in the Skies: A Tale (1943; vt The Hours and the Centuries: A Tale 1944) as by Peter Mendelssohn, which was written in English, sets a Utopia in a deserted mountain village, a redoubt-like Zone seemingly detached from historical time, though by ...


Item of sf Terminology coined in Robert A Heinlein's Stranger in a Strange Land (1961; text restored 1991), which was rapidly adopted in Fan Language and by late-1960s counterculture writers, and became sufficiently widespread to be regarded as having entered the English language – as recorded in The Oxford English Dictionary (1989). In Heinlein's novel it is a verb imported from the language of Mars (see Linguistics), whose literal meaning "to drink" is almost invariably a metaphor for ...

Cunningham, Michael

(1952-    ) US author, most prominently of The Hours (1998), a novel about Virginia Woolf which won the Pulitzer Prize and other awards; of sf interest is Specimen Days (2005), which like its famous predecessor has a tripartite structure, in this case three thematically intertwined stories, each set in an almost animate New York, each featuring versions of the same three primal characters. The first, set in the mid-nineteenth century, is a Ghost Story [see The Encyclopedia ...

Front Mission

Videogame series (from 1999). Initially Square (SQ), later Square Enix (SE). Designed by Toshiro Tsuchida. / Front Mission is a series of Console Role Playing Games (see Computer Role Playing Games) which emphasize turn-based tactical combat and strong, often multilinear, plots (see Interactive Narrative). To date, only three members of the main series have been released outside Japan: Front Mission (1995 SQ, SNES, 2002 rev vt Front Mission 1st SE, WS; 2003 PS1; 2007 NDS, vt Front Mission ...

Langford, David

(1953-    ) UK author, critic, editor, publisher and sf fan, in the latter capacity recipient of 21 Hugo awards for fan writing – some of the best of his several hundred pieces are assembled as Let's Hear It for the Deaf Man (coll 1992 chap US; much exp vt The Silence of the Langford 1996; exp 2015 ebook) as Dave Langford, edited by Ben Yalow – plus five Best Fanzine Hugos and one Semiprozine Hugo for his self-produced news magazine, Ansible (which see). His one ...

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