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MacLean, Alistair

Entry updated 17 January 2023. Tagged: Author.

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(1922-1987) Scottish author whose novels are mostly – like The Guns of Navarone (1957) – well-crafted action adventures, usually set at least in part at sea. The Dark Crusader (1961; vt The Black Shrike 1961) and The Satan Bug (1962), both as by Ian Stuart, are Cold War thrillers which make use of sf McGuffins, though in the latter the eponymous manufactured virus threatens to instigate a universally fatal Pandemic. This novel was filmed as The Satan Bug (1965) directed by John Sturges.

The Golden Gate (1976) features the abduction of a US President. Goodbye California (1977) deals with a Yellow Peril menace: terrorists from Mindanao who Torture American physicists into building a stash of H-bombs, one of which is detonated under Los Angeles (see California) as a dreadful warning of things to come – a Disaster that would sink much of the eponymous state beneath the Pacific. [JC]

Alistair Stuart MacLean

born Glasgow, Scotland: 28 April 1922

died Munich, Germany: 2 February 1987



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