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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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Compton, D G

(1930-2023) UK author, born of parents who were both in the theatre; he increasingly lived in the USA after 1981. As Guy Compton, he published some unremarkable detective novels, beginning with Too Many Murderers (1962), and as by Frances Lynch produced some nonfantastic Gothics throughout his career; but soon turned to sf with tales almost always set in the Near Future, and anatomizing moral dilemmas within that arena: the future is very clearly ...

Konkevič, Alexsandr

(1842-?1917) Russian author whose Future War tale, Krejsev "Russkaja Nadežda" (1886 Russkoje Sudohodstvo; 1887; trans Charles James Cooke as The "Russia's Hope"; Or, Britannia No Longer Rules the Waves: Showing How the Muscovite Bear Got at the British Whale 1888) as A K, shows the Russian navy rapidly wiping out the British navy, aided by an advanced Weapon in the form of a fast and accurate ...

Elison, Meg

(1982-    ) US author whose first novel was The Book of the Unnamed Midwife (2014), a particularly grim Dystopia whose precipitating Disaster is the rapid onslaught of an autoimmune disease that kills most men and almost all women and children. The Post-Holocaust USA into which the title character awakens (after surviving her own illness) has all the worst excesses ...

Babcock, Margaret A

(?   -    ) US Episcopal priest and author of several nonfiction books on religious matters [not listed below], and an sf novel, Eden.2 (2021), whose protagonists – a priest and his male exobiologist husband – head the settling of an unexplored planet, which may be inhabited, perhaps in a Gaian manner, by an entity. Their aspirations are high, but a second Starship arrives from ...

Soldati, Mario

(1906-1999) Italian film director and author, well known in both capacities from the 1930s, his writing career extending from 1925 until his death; of sf interest is Lo Smeraldo (1974; trans William Weaver as The Emerald 1977), set in a fragmented Near Future Italy: nuclear explosions have turned the north into a Ruined Earth; the south remains full of chthonic promise, as demonstrated by the eponymous ...

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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