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Anderson, Kevin J

Entry updated 4 March 2024. Tagged: Author.

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(1962-    ) US technical author and author, married to Rebecca Moesta; he began publishing sf with "Luck of the Draw" in Space and Time (Winter 1982/1983 #63), and gradually became a prolific contributor of short fiction and articles to various sf journals, over 100 items having been published by 1992. His first novel, Resurrection, Inc. (1988; vt Resurrection, Inc: Tenth Anniversary Edition 1999), combines elements of the usual sf near-future Dystopia with elements of the horror novel, reanimated bodies serving a corrupt society as a worker-class. There followed the Gamearth trilogy – Gamearth (1989), Gameplay (1989) and Game's End (1990) – which treats with some verve a Game-World crisis involved the coming to life of game-bound personas who (or which) refuse to be cancelled. More interestingly, Lifeline (1990) with Doug Beason sets up and solves a technically complex sequence of problems in space after a nuclear Holocaust (the result of a USSR-US Cold War contretemps of the sort which, unluckily for the authors, had in the months before publication abruptly become much less likely) has stripped four habitats of all Earth support; the Filipino station boasts a Genetic-Engineering genius who can feed everyone, a US station has the eponymous monofilament, and so on. Some of the protagonists carrying on the quadripartite storyline are of interest in their own right. If one puts aside the whiplashes of Earth's realtime history, the book stands as a fine example of Hard SF and a gripping portrayal of the complexities of near space. The Trinity Paradox (1991), also with Beason, treats the now-standard sf Time-Paradox tale with overdue seriousness, suggesting that untoward moral consequences attend the sudden capacity of its protagonist – who has undergone an accidental Timeslip back to Los Alamos in 1943 – to stop nuclear testing in its tracks.

After the beginning of the 1990s, Anderson's career bifurcated. While continuing to generate standalone novels, solo or with others, he began as well to participate in Shared-World enterprises, notably Star Wars, contributing at least 30 titles [see Checklist below] to its various sub-universes, but also Star Trek and X-Files and others. Though it is sometimes difficult to detect a personal note in such enterprises, Anderson's contributions are marked by vigour and good sense. Some of his non-tie collaborations are of interest: for the Dune sequels and prequels, see Brian Herbert; Slan Hunter (December 2006-April 2007 Jim Baen's Universe; 2007) completes A E van Vogt's partial draft of a sequel to his Slan (September-December 1940 Astounding; 1946; rev 1951). In 2012 he received the Grandmaster Scribe Award for career achievement in media Ties.

His own work remains various. Climbing Olympus (1994) is an adventure set on a Mars whose surgically-altered inhabitants are estranged by the Terraforming of the planet. A tale like Blindfold (1995) may depend too heavily on its conspiracy thriller roots to convey much of a coherent grasp of the structure of the Telepathy-dominated colony planet which serves as its venue, but the stories assembled in Dogged Persistence (coll 2001), which mix Ties and autonomous works, demonstrate the clean force of his writing at its best. Anderson's clearly long-held interest in The War of the Worlds (April-December 1897 Pearson's; 1898) by H G Wells has generated a theme anthology, War of the Worlds: Global Dispatches (anth 1996), assembling a set of stories directly derived from Wells's narrative; and, with Rebecca Moesta under the joint pseudonym Gabriel Mesta, The Martian War: A Thrilling Eyewitness Account of the Recent Invasion As Reported by Mr. H.G. Wells (2005; vt The Martian War 2012 as by Anderson solo), which continues in the same vein. On a vaster, more broad-gauge scale, the Saga of Seven Suns – a Space Opera sequence comprising The Saga of Seven Suns, Book 1: Hidden Empire (2002), The Saga of Seven Suns, Book 2: A Forest of Stars (2003), The Saga of Seven Suns, Book 3: Horizon Storms (2004), The Saga of Seven Suns, Book 4: Scattered Suns (2005), The Saga of Seven Suns, Book 5: Of Fire and Night (2006), The Saga of Seven Suns, Book 6: Metal Swarm (2007) and The Saga of Seven Suns, Book 7: Ashes of Worlds (2007) – pits human civilizations and their allies against enemies whose motives are initially obscure; the venue is a Spiral Arm of our galaxy; the action is unfailingly constant. A spin-off series, Saga of Shadows set in the Saga of Seven Suns universe starts with The Dark Between the Stars (2015). The Hellhole sequence, comprising Hellhole (2011), Hellhole: Awakening (2013) and Hellhole Inferno (2014), all with Brian Herbert, is also broad-gauge space opera. The Clockwork Angels sequence beginning with Clockwork Angels (2012) is Steampunk, a Tie to the band Rush; the second and third volumes were in collaboration with Canadian fantasy author Neil Peart (1952-2020).

Anderson may be an author whose ambitions seem more extensive than intensive; but the glad energy of many of his enterprises is quite possibly reward enough. [JC]

see also: Grey Goo; Medicine; Nuclear Energy; Reincarnation; Telekinesis.

Kevin James Anderson

born Oregon, Wisconsin: 27 March 1962



Gamearth Trilogy

  • Gamearth (New York: New American Library, 1989) [Gamearth Trilogy: pb/Dean W Morrissey]
  • Gameplay (New York: New American Library, 1989) [Gamearth Trilogy: pb/Dean W Morrissey]
  • Game's End (New York: New American Library, 1990) [Gamearth Trilogy: pb/Dean W Morrissey]


  • Afterimage (New York: Penguin Books, 1992) with Kristine Kathryn Rusch [pb/Richard Hescox]
    • Afterimage/Aftershock (Stone Mountain, Georgia: Meisha Merlin Publishing, 1998) with Kristine Kathryn Rusch [expansion of above plus the book-length "Aftershock": pb/Kevin Murphy]

Craig Kreident, Special Agent

Dune series

Dune: Prelude to Dune

Dune: Legends of Dune

Dune: Frank Herbert's Original Dune Chronicles

Dune Stories

  • Tales of Dune (Monument, Colorado: WordFire Press, 2011) with Brian Herbert [coll: ebook: Dune Stories: na/]
    • Tales of Dune (Monument, Colorado: WordFire Press, 2017) with Brian Herbert [coll: exp of the above: one story added: Dune Stories: hb/Stephen Youll]
  • Sands of Dune (New York: Tor, 2022) with Brian Herbert [coll: Dune Stories: hb/]

Dune: Origins Trilogy

Dune: Caladan Trilogy

Dune Prequels

Saga of Seven Suns

Saga of Seven Suns: Saga of Shadows

Crystal Doors

Terra Incognita

Hellhole Trilogy

Dan Shamble, Zombie P.I.

Arcane America

  • Uncharted (New York: Baen Books, 2012) with Sarah A Hoyt [Arcane America: pb/Dave Seeley]

Wake the Dragon

  • Spine of the Dragon (New York: Tor, 2019) [Wake the Dragon: hb/Lars Grant-West]
  • Vengewar (New York: Tor, 2021) [Wake the Dragon: hb/Lars Grant-West]
  • Gods and Dragons (New York: Tor, 2022) [Wake the Dragon: hb/Lars Grant-West]


  • Roll (Fort Worth, Texas: Aethon Books, 2021) [Hexworld: hb/]
  • Play (Fort Worth, Texas: Aethon Books, 2021) [Hexworld: hb/]
  • End (Fort Worth, Texas: Aethon Books, 2021) [Hexworld: hb/]

individual titles



Star Wars ties

Star Wars: Jedi Academy

Star Wars: Young Jedi Knights

Star Wars

Star Wars ties as editor

other ties



Star Trek

Titan A.E.

Clockwork Angels

  • Clockwork Angels (Toronto: ECW Press, 2012) [tie to the band Rush's eponymous album: Clockwork Angels: hb/Hugh Syme]
  • Clockwork Lives (Toronto: ECW Press, 2015) with Neil Peart [coll of linked stories: tie to the band Rush's album as above: Clockwork Angels: hb/Nick Robles]
  • Clockwork Destiny (Toronto: ECW Press, 2022) with Neil Peart [coll of linked stories: tie to the band Rush's album as above: Clockwork Angels: hb/]

Arcane America

  • Uncharted (New York: Baen Books, 2018) with Sarah A Hoyt [Arcane America: hb/Dave Seeley]

Selected Stories

individual titles

works as editor


Blood Lite

individual titles

nonfiction works as editor


previous versions of this entry

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