Best–selling books written by very wealthy people are usually along the lines of “The Secrets of My Success” ― but this is a space–travel story!
A Romance of the Future
John Jacob Astor IV (1894)
Continue reading “A Journey in Other Worlds”
- HNtW 092 (2021–08–13) : Author’s Preface, Book I Chapters I―IV
- HNtW 093 (2021–08–17) : Introduction by SM Stirling for a reprint edition (following the main content of the show, which is Chapter II of The Castle of Otranto)
- HNtW 094 (2021–09–02) Book I, Chapters V―VII
Edgar Rice Burroughs
This further sequel to A Princess of Mars and The Gods of Mars has no preface to explain how the author came into possession of Captain Carter’s story. Rather, it picks up directly where the previous book left off.
Continue reading “The Warlord of Mars”
Edgar Rice Burroughs
This is the immediate sequel to A Princess of Mars, relating the further adventures of John Carter after his death on Earth.
Continue reading “The Gods of Mars”
or, Captives of a Strange People
Everett Bleiler, in his monumental Science Fiction : The Early Years suggests that the “Great Marvels Series” of juvenile scientific-adventure novels, in which this was the eighth and next–to–last volume, was the first cloth–bound SF series in any language. The first instalment, Through the Air to the North Pole, or, The Wonderful Cruise of the Electric Monarch, appeared in 1906, and this one dates from 1929.
According to Bleiler, publishing magnate Edward Stratemeyer provided the plots to be fleshed out by writers under the Rockwood pseudonym, and for the first six books, the writer can be identified as Howard R Garis, but for this one it is unknown. Several of the other books in the series are available on Project Gutenberg, but not this one. Copyright is Cupples & Leon Co.
Continue reading “By Air Express to Venus”
- HNtW 073, 2020-06-26 : Chapter I
- HNtW 077, 2020-07-10 : Chapter II
- HNtW 079, 2020-07-17 : Chapters III & IV
- HNtW 080, 2020-07-21 : Chapters V & VI (plus most of VII)
- HNtW 084, 2020-08-04 : Chapter VII
- HNtW 085, 2020-08-07 : Chapters VIII & IX (did not archive, re-run 2020-08-14)
- HNtW 086, 2020-08-11 : Chapter X
- HNtW 087, 2021–05–28 : Chapters XI―XV
- HNtW 088, 2021–06–15 : Chapters XVI―XXI
- HNtW 089, 2021–07–02 : Chapters XXII―XXVIII
- HNtW 090, 2021–07–06 : Chapters XXIX & XXX (end)
First half read 2019-02-03 ; about half of what remained, 2019-02-17, and finished 2019-03-03. (Video livestream recordings are available for two weeks.) This is a long one, for all that it represents an abridged edition. No unabridged version exists in English.
Continue reading “Auf Zwei Planeten”
- 2019-02-05, HNtW 044, chapters 1―4
- 2019-02-08, HNtW 045, chapters 5―8
- 2019-02-12, HNtW 046, chapters 9―11
- 2019-02-15, HNtW 047, chapters 12―15 (rerun 2020-05-05 to restore ending of ch.15)
- 2019-02-19, HNtW 048, chapters 16―19
- 2019-02-22, HNtW 049, chapters 20―23
- 2019-02-26, HNtW 050, chapters 24―27 (rerun 2020-05-15 to restore ending of ch.27)
- 2019-03-01, HNtW 051, chapters 28―32
- 2019-03-05, HNtW 052, chapters 33―36
- 2019-03-08, HNtW 053, chapters 37―41
- 2019-03-12, HNtW 054, chapters 42―45
- 2019-03-15, HNtW 055, chapters 46―51
- 2019-03-22, HNtW 056, chapters 52―55 (show on 03-19 failed due to my error)
- 2019-03-26, HNtW 057, chapter 56 and supplementary matter
Willy Ley encountered this Mars story in a German translation, and, failing to find the English original (possibly hampered by looking for it under the title Beyond the Zodiac, but Percy Greg was apparently a well-known English author), considered that it might be actually German. The confusion was not helped by the fact that author Greg presents himself as translating a found manuscript. Sam Moskowitz considers it the genesis of the Mars romance so characteristic of the early period of modern science fiction.
Continue reading “Across the Zodiac : The Story of a Wrecked Record”
Philip Francis Nowlan
This novel was edited together from two novelettes (one with the same title, the other entitled The Airlords of Han) which appeared in 1928—29. The first part, in fact, was published in the same issue of Amazing Stories as the first part of The Skylark of Space. And that’s why I’ve chosen to read it now, rather than later.
There is also a 1978 version available, “specially revised and updated for the modern reader” (or rather, heavily rewritten) by of all people “noted science fiction critic and Hugo Award winning author Spider Robinson”. I missed my chance to ask him about this at the Kansas City Worldcon, where he was Guest of Honor.
- Front matter, Prologue, Chapters 1 & 2 — HNtW 29, 5 May 2017
- Chapters 3—5, HNtW 30, 9 May
- Chapters 6—8, HNtW 31, 16 May
- Chapters 9—11, HNtW 32, 19 May
- Chapters 12—16 (and a bit of 17), HNtW 33, 23 May
- Chapters 17 & 18, and Epilogue, HNtW 34, 26 May
Money is the sincerest form of flattery.
Edward Elmer Smith, PhD
and Lee Hawkins Garby
There is a sense in which Skylark is the science fiction novel. Its influence on the whole genre cannot be overstated. It launched the writing career of “Doc” Smith, and pioneered any number of things which became cliche later. As a result, I’m really pleased to have read it for you — and not at all pleased by the technical problems which left the recording sounding as though I was at the bottom of a well the whole time!
- Chapters 1—3, HNtW 21, 2017–04–04
- Chapters 4—6, HNtW 22, 2017–04–07
- Chapters 7 & 8, HNtW 23, 2017–04–11 (9 was just that much longer it wouldn’t fit!)
- Chapters 9 & 10, HNtW 24, 2017–04–18 (no show Good Friday ― rerun 2020-05-01 as archived version was corrupt)
- Chapters 11 & 12, HNtW 25, 2017–04–21
- Chapters 13 & 14, HNtW 26, 2017–04–24
- Chapters 15 & 16, HNtW 27, 2017–04–28
- Chapters 17—19 (conclusion), HNtW 28, 2017-05-02
- Chapters 1 & 2 (re–read version), HNtW 090, 2021–07–06 — teaser for a bonus which will be available to Patreon supporters
Continue reading “The Skylark of Space”
In 1933—34, a “round robin” novel, with each successive chapter by a different author, was published in the fanzines Science Fiction Digest & Fantasy Magazine. I first encountered the chapters by A. Merritt and Doc Smith in anthologies of their respective works. It so happens that Doc’s chapter is a direct sequel to Merritt’s, which made it obvious to see what was going on, & led me to suspect the existence of more stories. Continue reading “Cosmos”
I have now recorded The Moon Pool, by Abraham Merritt. It was a gruelling effort, requiring more than 10 hours. But that means plenty of shows!
- 2017-02-17, HNtW 008, Foreword, Chapters 1—4 (no show on the 14th owing to my error)
- 2017-02-21, HNtW 009, Chapters 5—8
- 2017-02-24, HNtW 010, Chapters 9—11
- 2017-02-28, HNtW 011, Chapters 12—15
- 2017-03-03, HNtW 012, Chapters 16—18, plus introduction by Silverberg to U. of Nebraska Press edition
- 2017-03-07, HNtW 013, Chapters 19 & 20, plus New York Times book review
- 2017-03-10, HNtW 014, Chapters 21—23, plus beginning of Part 3 of Citadel of Lost Ships by Leigh Brackett
- 2017-03-14, HNtW 015, Chapters 24—26, and remainder of Citadel of Lost Ships Part 3.
- 2017-03-17, HNtW 016, Chapters 27—29, and a brief discussion of Auf Zwei Planeten by Kurd Lasswitz, courtesy of Willy Ley.
- 2017-03-21, HNtW 017, Chapters 30—33, and a brief discussion of the powers of two.
- 2017-03-24, HNtW 018, Chapters 34 & 35, concluding The Moon Pool, and Parts 4 & 5 of Citadel of Lost Ships, which thus also concludes.
- 2019-04-02, HNtW 058, Chapters 1—3 of the novelette The Moon Pool, as published in All–Story Weekly, 22 June 1918 (rebroadcast 2020-04-21 to correct order of segments)
- 2019-04-05, HNtW 059, Chapters 4—7, completing the novelette
Continue reading “The Moon Pool”