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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
After years of being out of print, two of Samuel R. Delany's masterworks are finally available again. Delany, who is described in The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction as "one of the most influential and most discussed within the genre," published Babel-17 and Empire Star in 1966. The former went on to win the Nebula Award for Best Novel.
Babel-17 is all about the power of language. Humanity, which has spread throughout the universe, is involved in a war with the Invaders, who have been covertly assassinating officials and sabotaging spaceships. The only clues humanity has to go on are strange alien messages that have been intercepted in space. Poet and linguist Rydra Wong is determined to understand the language and stop the alien threat.
While I love reading classic science fiction, many times I'm disappointed because the stories have become so dated. Not so with these Delany gems. After almost four decades, these stories are just as fresh as they were back in 1966 -- true classics. (Paul Goat Allen)