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Garnett, David S

(1947-    ) UK author, author of a large number of books, many of them novels, in various genres and under various names. To differentiate himself from the elder David Garnett he created a middle initial to add to his own name, and in the US signed his early books Dav Garnett, for the same reason; he has published novels also as David Lee and David Ferring. His sf has always been action-oriented and dominated by Space-Opera conventions, which he has never been able to take entirely seriously (nor has he often attempted to write sf in other categories); his first book, Mirror in the Sky (1969), guys those traditions with disillusioned but moderate spite. The later Stargonauts sequence, comprising Stargonauts (1994), Bikini Planet (2000) and Space Wasters (2001), continues the assault and ineffably broadens the slapstick. But Garnett's third novel, Time in Eclipse (1974) – written like its 1970s successors for Robert Hale Limited – is a comparatively ambitious effort set on a war-torn Earth whose guardian is an Amnesiac obscurely bound to a vast Computer. Much of this author's work has been marked by haste and, occasionally, indifference, so that the anarchic subtexts pervading his most routine tales can seem unintended, which is almost certainly unfair to the author's subversive bent of mind.

As editor, Garnett was responsible for an original story anthology series, Zenith: The Best in New British Science Fiction (anth 1989) and Zenith 2: The Best in New British Science Fiction (anth 1990); during the same period, he also edited The Orbit Science Fiction Yearbook 1 (anth 1988), The Orbit Science Fiction Yearbook 2 (anth 1989) and The Orbit Science Fiction Yearbook 3 (anth 1990), a series distinguished from other year's-best anthologies by its smaller size and greater concentration on critical material, each volume including essays on the sf scene by Brian W Aldiss, John Clute and Garnett himself. The ambitiousness of the critical work in this sequence was centrally due to his encouragement. When both Zenith and Orbit were terminated, he initiated – with the approval of Michael Moorcock – a new incarnation of New Worlds, this time in anthology form – comprising New Worlds (anth 1991), New Worlds 2 (anth 1992), New Worlds 3 (anth 1993) and New Worlds 4 (anth 1994), plus an unnumbered final volume, New Worlds (anth 1997) – and combining features of both earlier sequences: original fictions, plus further critical work. Further instalments of New Worlds were mooted but did not appear. [JC]

see also: Anthologies; Game-Worlds.

David Stanley Garnett

born Cheshire: 15 June 1947




Warhammer: Konrad

individual titles


works as editor



New Worlds


Entry from The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction (2011-current) edited by John Clute and David Langford.
Accessed 14:39 pm on 6 June 2023.