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Staton, Mary

Entry updated 12 September 2022. Tagged: Author.

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(circa 1944-    ) US author in whose first novel, From the Legend of Biel (1975), a team of explorers from Earth awakens from Suspended Animation and attempts to solve the mysteries presented by a previously inhabited planet, now abandoned except for an array of enigmatic structures. Once the code they embed has been solved by the tale's protagonist, the story of Biel – a female inhabitant of the earlier civilization whose nature has been transformed by prenatal Drugs – is conveyed to him by Telepathy. Unfortunately her narrative, which incorporates an invitation to join a galactic Federation, kills the protagonist, and the rest of the team destroys the planet. A brief epilogue suggests that the planet, and its inhabitants, will soon be resuscitated. Staton's second novel, Wilderness of the Heart – Seven Gates (2007), is set in a moderately Far Future Ruined Earth whose surface is dominated by a Dystopian Keep; but the protagonist escapes to find humane cultures Underground, though a ruthless corporation attempts to run them down. Meanwhile, the Space States – comprising four World Ships whose mission is to discover new life in the galaxy – enjoy a post-scarcity life evocative of Iain M Banks's Culture series. Staton's ample ambition is sometimes ill-served by a prose which has a tendency to stumble. [JC]

Mary Staton

born circa 1944



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