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Greenleaf, William

Entry updated 12 September 2022. Tagged: Author.

(1948-    ) US author, not to be confused with the William Greenleaf (1917-1975) whose works are in the field of economics; Greenleaf began publishing sf with his first novel, Timejumper (1980), an adventure incorporating an unusually subtle presentation of the rite of passage – the empowering journey of the protagonist towards a culture-redeeming Conceptual Breakthrough – central to the sf genre. His further novels share a common galactic background, though it is clear he is interested in that background not to challenge it with cosmogonies and alarums but in order to add verisimilitude to tales of humans caught off-balance in the vast Universe, and attempting to cope. The Tartarus Incident (1983) lovingly describes an accident which dumps an untrained group of humans on the planet of the title. The Pandora Stone (1984) is a tale of detection involving an AI and a return to an almost deserted Earth, where wisdom still resides. Starjacked! (1987) covers similar ground, perhaps rather hurriedly, though Clarion (1988) pits charismatic Aliens against a similarly endowed human, with morally complex implications, on a well-described colony planet. Unfortunately, before fully establishing a name, he fell silent. [JC]

William Greenleaf

born Illinois: 9 August 1948



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