Microcosmic God: The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon

Microcosmic God: The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon

by Theodore Sturgeon
     
 

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The second of thirteen volumes that reprint all Sturgeon's short fiction covers his prolific output during 1940 and 1941, after which he suffered five years of writer's block. Showcasing Sturgeon's early penchant for fantasy, the first six selections include whimsical ghost stories, such as “Cargo,” in which a World War II munitions freighter is

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Overview

The second of thirteen volumes that reprint all Sturgeon's short fiction covers his prolific output during 1940 and 1941, after which he suffered five years of writer's block. Showcasing Sturgeon's early penchant for fantasy, the first six selections include whimsical ghost stories, such as “Cargo,” in which a World War II munitions freighter is commandeered by invisible, peace-loving fairies. With the publication of his enduring science fiction classic, “Microcosmic God,” Sturgeon finally found his voice, combining literate, sharp-edged prose with fascinating speculative science while recounting the power struggle between a brilliant scientist, who creates his own miniature race of gadget makers, and his greedy banker. Every one of the stories here is entertaining today because of Sturgeon's singular gifts for clever turns of phrase and compelling narrative. As Samuel R. Delaney emphasizes in an insightful introduction, Sturgeon was the single most influential science fiction writer from the 1940s through the 1960s.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
 “Historically, the Complete Sturgeon is one of the most important reissues in years. In terms of reading, this is a gold mine both for those already familiar with Sturgeon's work and for a new generation of readers ready for something real.”
Strange Worlds Magazine

 “Theodore Sturgeon has become a kind of patron saint of SF short story writers. His fiction demonstrated a love of humanity and an understanding of human emotion unparalleled in the field. At the time of his death in 1985, no short story writer was held in such high regard.”
—David Brin, author of Heaven's Reach

Publisher's Weekly
Samuel R. Delany notes in his excellent foreword here that Theodore Sturgeon (1918-1985) is the master of near-future science fiction-a contention backed by the stories in this second volume (following The Ultimate Egoist) of a projected 10-volume series presenting all of Sturgeon's short fiction. There are some dated references in these tales, written in 1940 and 1941-a ``twelve-dollar French meal,'' ``an automobile mechanic [who makes] $23 a week''-but only a few of the stories (such as ``Two Percent Inspiration'' in which the planet Mercury has a breathable atmosphere) seem merely quaint. The title tale, which reveals the symbiosis between an inventor and the community of microscopic beings he creates, is perhaps Sturgeon's best remembered. But it is stories such as ``The Golden Egg,'' ``The Anonymous'' and ``Shottle Bop'' that reveal the author's attention to the finer nuances of being human. Even the weakest entries here display Sturgeon's curiosity and refusal to write stock entertainment. The range of this volume-which ends at Sturgeon's first major writing block-is prodigious, and that the author produced such epiphaniac work as ``The Golden Egg'' and the title tale before his 24th birthday is cause for amazement. Everyone interested in SF's potential as abiding literature should cherish this volume. (Jan.)
Carl Hays
The second of a planned 10 volumes that will reprint all Sturgeon's short fiction covers his prolific output during 1940 and 1941, after which he suffered five years of writer's block. Showcasing Sturgeon's early penchant for fantasy, the first six selections include whimsical ghost stories, such as "Cargo," in which a World War II munitions freighter is commandeered by invisible, peace-loving fairies. With the publication of his enduring sf classic, "Microcosmic God," Sturgeon finally found his voice, combining literate, sharp-edged prose with fascinating speculative science while recounting the power struggle between a brilliant scientist, who creates his own miniature race of gadget makers, and his greedy banker. Voice found or not, every one of the stories here is readable and entertaining today because of Sturgeon's singular gifts for clever turns of phrase and compelling narrative. As Samuel R. Delaney emphasizes in an insightful introduction, Sturgeon was the single most influential sf writer from the 1940s through the 1960s. No sf collection is complete without his works.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781556436598
Publisher:
North Atlantic Books
Publication date:
11/09/2010
Series:
Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon Series, #2
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
408
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.70(d)

Meet the Author

Theodore Sturgeon was born on February 26, 1918, in Staten Island, New York. He died in Eugene, Oregon, on May 8, 1985. A resident of New York City, upstate New York, and Los Angeles, he is the author of more than thirty novels and short story collections.

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