THE CLASSIC PHILIP JOSE FARMER, 1952-1964 by Philip Jose Farmer


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Farmer, these days best known for his interminable Riverworld series, was instrumental in kicking science fiction out of its late-1940s puritanical rut--and these six iconoclastic, imaginative yarns aptly show how and why. ""Sail On! Sail On!"" is a wry, alternate-history tale in which Columbus, heading hopefully west for the Indies, sails off the edge of the world. In the daring, Freudian ""Mother,"" a gigantic womb-like alien captures an unsuspecting mother's-boy as part of its reproductive cycle. The adroit fantasy ""The God Business"" presents a heavily symbolic journey from self-delusion to enlightenment. In the powerful, tragic ""The Alley Man,"" the last full-blooded Neanderthal, whose odor makes him overpoweringly attractive to women, scavenges a living in back alleys and junk heaps. And ""My Sister's Brother"" is a challenging alien contact story in which a deeply religious man meets advanced aliens whose reproductive arrangements revolt and disgust him. True, most of these stories--sometimes startling and often disturbing--are famous, widely anthologized. But together for the first time they represent Farmer at his provocative best--and seem a fine choice for Crown's new Classics of Modern Science Fiction Series. (See Gunn, Oliver, and Russell, below, for the other first installments of this low-price hardcover project.)

Pub Date: Feb. 14th, 1983
Publisher: Crown