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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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Fowler, George

(?   -?   ) US author – his identity is uncertain – of an early American example of Proto SF, A Flight to the Moon; or, The Vision of Randalthus (1813); though it is an angel which transports the protagonist to the Moon in what turns out to be a dream. Randalthus's observations are rationalist within that frame, and include speculations on Evolution and the death of the Sun, which he also visits. [JC]

Sand, George

Pseudonym of French author Amantine Lucille Aurore Dupin (1804-1876), a figure of cultural importance in France from the 1830s until her death; she published widely, an oeuvre which included about forty novels alone. Of sf interest is Laura: Voyage dans le cristal (1864; trans Pauline Pearson-Stamps as Journey Within the Crystal 1992; new trans Sue Dyson as Laura: Journey into the Crystal 2004). This is both an anticipation of Virtual Reality, in which narrator Alexis finds his cousin Laura ...

Starr, Bill

(1933-2021) US author primarily known for the Farstar and Son sequence of Space Opera adventures featuring a slightly rascally entrepreneur and his son: The Way to Dawnworld (1975) and The Treasure of Wonderwhat (1977). The books have something of the quaintness of their titles. Starr's other known sf consists of a single short story, "The People Who Could Not Kill" (in Stellar #3, anth 1977, ed Judy-Lynn del Rey). [JC]

Wolff, Veronica

(?   -    ) US author of some sf interest for her Highlands sequence of romantic Time Travel tales beginning with Master of the Highlands (2008), whose jaded twentieth-century protagonist discovers a fuller life when she solves the secret of a mysterious Labyrinth which conveys her to the seventeenth century, her true love, and numerous tempests of the spirit and the flesh. None of Wolff's other series [not listed below] are of sf interest. [JC]

Deadly Mantis, The

Film (1957). Universal-International Pictures. Produced by William Alland. Directed by Nathan Juran. Written by Martin Berkeley and Alland (uncredited). Cast includes William Hopper, Craig Stevens and Alix Talton. 79 minutes. Black and white. / A volcano erupts in the Southern Pacific, somehow causing a break-up of ice near the North Pole which frees a 200-foot-long prehistoric praying mantis (see Great and Small) from a state of Suspended Animation within the ice. Soon the insect makes its ...

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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