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Ferguson, Neil

Entry updated 25 October 2021. Tagged: Author.

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(1947-    ) UK author who began publishing sf with "The Monroe Doctrine" for Interzone, Winter 1983/1984, and through the 1980s released several sharply conceived tales, revealing more than once a deep interest in US life.

His first book, Bars of America (coll 1986), not sf, is a collection of tales and musings set in the heart of that country. His first sf novel, Putting Out (1988), presents a Near-Future US political race in terms of the semiotics of dressing, with all the sensitivity to signs so often found in exiles, voluntary or forced. Double Helix Fall (1990), also linguistically inventive and darkly obsessed with the USA's visions of its own demise, presents – in the guise of a homage to the world and style of Philip K Dick – an original rendering of that sense of demise, for in the USA of this novel it has become a matter of political and religious orthodoxy that to be born is to die, and that the world into which one dies is a stratified Hell, predetermined (in a very Dickian fashion) by one's prenatal "behaviour". A Robot detective helps, in the nick of time, to loosen the death-grip; but not necessarily for good. [JC]

Neil Ferguson

born UK: 1947

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