More than 10,000 books and stories rated and reviewed! - About this site

Home A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W Y Z Pen names
reviews of books and stories by author's name
SF&F Timeline 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000-Now Best!
retrospective look at sf&f year-by-year
The Ultimate Guide to New SF&F Writers (from 1990 till now)

James Tiptree, Jr.

Pen-name of Alice B. Sheldon

James Tiptree, Jr.
"And I Awoke and Found Me Here on the Cold Hill's Side"

© F&SF, Mar 1972
Ten Thousand Light-Years From Home, 1973
--short story : 1972 Nebula
--short story : 1973 Hugo
--short story : 1973 Locus
--/ third place space sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ style award
--/ emotion award
--/ shock value

The way how humans get plastered over some aliens, and fall head-over-heals in love (or lust) spells disaster for humanity's self-esteem and erodes its soul... This is a sad, shining, bittersweet, irresistible tale, the true masterpiece of story-within-a-story narration and simply gorgeous alien / spaceship visions. I am in awe of Alice Sheldon - one of the best space adventure / space romance writers ever to grace the face of the Earth.


"And So On, And So On"
© Phantasmicon, Jun 1971
Star Songs of an Old Primate, 1978
--/ cool sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ rare find

"Beam Us Home"
© Galaxy, Apr 1969
10,000 Light Years From Home, 1973
--/ cool sf story
--/ wonder award

"Faithful To Thee, Terra, In Our Fashion"
(also as "Parimutuel Planet")
© Galaxy, Jan 1969
10,000 Light Years From Home, 1973
--/ cool sf story
--/ wonder award

"The Girl Who Was Plugged In"
© New Dimensions # 3, 1973
Warm Worlds And Otherwise, 1975
--novella : 1974 Hugo W
--novelette : 1974 Nebula
--short fiction : 1974 Locus /4
--novelette : 1974 Jupiter
--novelette : 1999 Locus All-Time Poll /24 (tie)

--/ fourth place sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ style award
--/ emotion award


"Houston, Houston, Do You Read?"
© Aurora: Beyond Equality, ed. V. McIntyre, 1976
Star Songs Of An Old Primate, 1978
--novella : 1977 Hugo W (tie)
--novella : 1977 Nebula W
--novella : 1977 Locus /3
--novella : 1977 Jupiter W
--novella : 1999 Locus All-Time Poll /6 (tie)

--/ fourth place sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ style award
--/ emotion award

"The Battle of the Sexes" has a predictable winner in this brilliant novella (predictable, because we know that James Tiptree is the male pseudonym of a woman writer). Surprisingly, the science fiction community did not guess the author's true identity even after this tounge-in-cheek feminist tale. (You can read a great summary on Wikipedia here) The story initially deals with the fate of a crew of three male astronauts falling toward the Sun. Then it develops a familiar feminine domination sub-plot ("I woke up in the future, the only male left in a society of women") I seem to remember there was a popular Polish movie along these lines (IMDB lists is as "Seksmisja" (engl. as "Sexmission"), shown in some countries as "The New Amazons". It was quite an engrossing movie, and I recommended it) The female space-travellers in this story turn out to be wacky clones of a remnant human population from the freshly nuked Earth. They decide to keep the astronauts as male specimens, which could spell a bliss or a curse for them, depending on how you look at it.
review: 26-Oct-06 (read in 1998)


"In Midst Of Life"
© F&SF, Nov 1987
Crown Of Stars, 1988
--short story : 1988 Locus /4
--/ cool sf story
--/ style award

"The Last Flight Of Dr. Ain"
© Galaxy, Mar 1969
Warm Worlds And Otherwise, 1975
--short story : 1970 Nebula
--/ fourth place sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ style award

"Lirios: A Tale Of The Quintana Roo"
© IASFM, Sep 1981
--novelette : 1982 Nebula
--novelette : 1982 Locus /9

--/ cool sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ style award

"The Man Who Walked Home"
© Amazing, May 1972
10,000 Light Years From Home, 1973
--/ cool sf story
--/ wonder award

"The Milk Of Paradise"
© Again, Dangerous Visions, 1972
Warm Worlds And Otherwise, 1975
--short fiction : 1973 Locus /18 (tie)
--/ fourth place sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ style award
--/ emotion award

"Mother in the Sky with Diamonds"
© Galaxy, Mar 1971
Ten Thousand Light-Years From Home, 1973
--novella : 1972 Best SF
--/ second place space sf novella
--/ wonder award
--/ adventure award
--/ emotion award
--/ romance award
--/ style award
--/ shock value
--/ awesome scale
--/ rare find

"The Only Neat Thing To Do"
(The Starry Rift series)
© F&SF, Oct 1985
The Starry Rift, 1986
--novella : 1986 Hugo
--novella : 1986 Nebula
--novella : 1986 Locus W
--novella : 1986 SF Chronicle W
--foreign short fiction : 1988 Seiun W

--/ second place space sf novella
--/ wonder award
--/ awesome scale
--/ adventure award
--/ idea award
--/ style award
--/ emotion award

"Parimutuel Planet"
(also as "Faithful To Thee, Terra, In Our Fashion")
© Galaxy, Jan 1969
10,000 Light Years From Home, 1973
--/ cool sf story
--/ wonder award


"The Psychologist Who Would Not
Do Awful Things To Rats"
© New Dimensions # 6, 1976
Star Songs Of An Old Primate, 1978
--novelette : 1977 Locus /6
--/ cool sf story

More than the simple future "animal rights" story. Tiptree is a woman, yes (Alice B. Sheldon's pen-name), but every time fools the audience. She served in the Army Intelligence and Air Corps, in the psych lab she and her colleagues had used rats as subjects, a form of unquestioned power relationship that can be disturbing as seen in this story.
review: 18-Jul-06 (read in 1987)


"The Screwfly Solution"
(as by Racoona Sheldon)
© Analog, Jun 1977
Out of the Everywhere, 1981
--novelette : 1978 Hugo
--novelette : 1978 Nebula W
--short fiction : 1978 Locus /2
--novelette : 1999 Locus All-Time Poll /23

--/ cool sf story
--/ style award

"A Source Of Innocent Merriment"
© Universe # 10, 1980
Out of the Everywhere, 1981
--/ cool sf story

"The Women Men Don't See"
© F&SF, Dec 1973
Warm Worlds And Otherwise, 1975
--short fiction : 1974 Locus /18
--novelette : 1975 Jupiter
--novelette : 1999 Locus All-Time Poll /17 (tie)

--/ cool sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ emotion award


Click to go to "Dark Roasted Blend" site



Post a Comment

<< Home


Collecting Pulp Magazines

Ephemera Interview with Avi Abrams

Enchanting Victorian Fairy Tale Art

"Then world behind and home ahead..."

Exceptional British Scifi Artwork from the 1950s

Space Pulp Art by Ron Turner and other British artists

Pulp Pleasures: Eando Binder

Great space adventure fiction from the 1930s
"Where Eternity Ends" and other rare gems

Epic Fantasy: the Start of the Journey

Part 2 of our "Best Classic Fantasy" series
incl. works by Henry Kuttner, Tolkien, etc.

Strange Shadows: Best Classic Fantasy

Fantasy "glitches in the matrix",
...lovely baroque magical lands, and more

Classic Cyberpunk SF Novels: Reviews

Neal Stephenson, William Gibson, K. W. Jeter, et al
(awesome must-reads)

10 Possible Sources of "Avatar" in Classic Science Fiction

Going beyond the obvious "Dances with Smurfs"...
(many stories worth reading)

"Steampunk" Anthology: Full Review

some truly crazed stories in there...
(plus artwork by John Coulthart)

"Dune", Plus Often-Neglected
Other Novels by Frank Herbert

"Dune", plus some overlooked gems:
"The Santaroga Barrier" and "The Green Brain"

Universe at Play:
Two Must-Read Novels of the Fantastic

"The Yiddish Policemen's Union" by Michael Chabon...
and David Mitchell's "Cloud Atlas"

Two of the Most Entertaining SF Novels from the 1980s

"Vacuum Flowers" by Michael Swanwick...
and Tim Power's "The Anubis Gates", of course!

"The Body Snatchers" and Other Alien Pods

Fiction by Jack Finney, Vance, Simak and Bloch
mind impostors and emotion imitators

Exploring the Noir and the Grotesque

Jack O'Connell "The Resurrectionist"
and other newest examples of the bizarre

Overpopulation, Sex and Sensibility

Robert Silverberg's "The World Inside"
and other classic sf blasts

H. P. Lovecraft "At the Mountains of Madness"

and other masterpieces of terror
including original illustrations

"Constellations", edited by Peter Crowther

original anthology, 2005
full review: mind-bending stories

The Ultimate Guide to New Writers of SF&F

more than 2,000 writers, 1990-2009
Ratings, awards, web links

The Surreal Office

"The Situation", "The Cookie Monster"
Weird fiction by Jeff VanderMeer and Vernor Vinge

Mind-shattering Novels of Philip K. Dick

"UBIK", "Now Wait for Last Year", etc.

Theodore Sturgeon's "More Than Human"

There’s a problem with this new gestalt being: needs a conscience.

Jack Williamson's "Legion of Space" Series

Classic Space Opera
The ultimate weapon, controlled by a gorgeous woman

Astounding Stories, August 1934

Jack Williamson, Nat Schachner, "Doc" Smith
Epic space opera gems and horror surprises

Rare Pulp SF&F, Issue 3

Leigh Brackett, Fritz Leiber, Vic Phillips
Rediscovered gems of wonder & adventure

William Gibson's Novels

"Pattern Recognition", "Neuromancer"
A Fractured Delight...

Alfred Bester "The Computer Connection"

"Bester was the mountain, all the rest of us..."
Pyrokinetic writing in one neat package

Two Novels by Samuel R. Delany

"Nova" and "Babel-17"
New Wave Milestones, and then some.

Theodore Sturgeon's "The Cosmic Rape"

(and more reviews of his fiction)
Classic SF at its best and most humane

Travel Distant Worlds!

Vintage Space Travel Posters, and more.
Part 3 of Pulp Sf art series...

Alastair Reynolds' Epic Novels

"Chasm City" and "Revelation Space"
And it's only the beginning...

Rare Fantasy Gems by C. L. Moore and Henry Kuttner

Hidden Gems of Pulp Fiction
When two star writers become husband and wife

Grand Old Times... in the Future

Overview of Pulp Art
A Loudly Lurid Universe of Sci-Fi Illustration

Exclusive: Interview with Nancy Kress

From High Fantasy to Hard Science Fiction
A Spectrum of Wonder

Jack Vance

"To Live Forever"
and other Vance extravaganzas

Alastair Reynolds

"Pushing Ice"
Cosmological "noir" chase across space

Charles Stross

"Missile Gap"
Mind-bending Cold War world-building

Hidden Gems of Pulp SF, Part 2

Rare stories from the "Age of Wonder"
incl. David Keller, Horace Gold etc.

Ultra-Rare Serials from "Fantasy Magazine"

"Cosmos" + "Challenge From Beyond"
incredible line-up of writers

Hidden Gems of Pulp SF, Part 1

Neat & Rare Stories
incl. the mad rally story "The Racer"

Astounding Stories, June 1935

Full Issue Review
incl. Gallun, Schachner, Campbell

Astounding Stories, May 1941

Full Issue Review
incl. Heinlein, Asimov, Eric Frank Russell

Horace Gold; P. Schuyler Miller

"Apocalyptic Blockbusters"
"Inflexure" and "Spawn": guilty pleasure

Interview with John C. Wright

Plus his advice to new writers
Adventures in Space & Magic

Frank Belknap Long

"The Horror from the Hills"
Great Lovecraftian Weird Novella

Interview with Jeff VanderMeer

Plus his Recommended Reading List
A Triumph of the Bizarre

Alastair Reynolds, Part 2

More "Galactic North" Stories
A Mixture of Hard Sf, James Bond & Jaws...

Alastair Reynolds Review

"Galactic North"
staring down infinity...

Most Shocking Article

"Holey Fools" by M. Christian
Warning: Gross Subject Matter

Alfred Bester Review

"The Stars My Destination"
"...nail it to the Retro Hugo voting board..."

Larry Niven Review

"Neutron Star"
"better get GP alien ship hull"

Poul Anderson Review

"Ensign Flandry"
"or how to start a sub-genre..."

Thomas M. Disch Review

"The Squirrel Cage"
"...seriously mind-bending stuff..."

Henry Kuttner Review

"Mimsy Were the Borogoves" (The Last Mimzy)
"...great storyline for a pretty average movie..."

Robert A. Heinlein Review

"The Moon is the Harsh Mistress"
" caused a tooth ache, and put my brain on freeze..."

Frank Herbert Review

"Destination: Void"
"...a layered cake of ideas and a scientific extrapolation on a genius level..."

Harlan Ellison Review

"The Abnormals"
"...editors slapped the most outrageous titles on his stories..."

James White Review

"All Judgement Fled"
"...the tension is palpable, soon to grow almost unbearable..."

Grand Adventure Strikes Again

Space Opera Article, by Avi Abrams
Based on Arthur Clarke's "Against the Fall of Night"

William Gibson Review

"Burning Chrome"
"...sheer pyrotechnics and exuberance of style..."

Ace Double: Murray Leinster

"The Pirates of Ersatz /The Mutant Weapon"
"...the characters might as well be cats or hamsters..."

Astounding Stories, May 1935

Pulp SF Magazine Review
with many original illustrations

Also read recent posts:
Author's Pen Names - Most Complete List Ever
The Wonder Timeline: SF&F Restrospective
Space Adventure Article



"SF&F Reading Experience" is part of "Dark Roasted Blend / Thrilling Wonder" family of sites. We try to highlight the most entertaining and rewarding science fiction and fantasy, with emphasis on memorable reader experience, not necessarily general acceptance by the critics. Have fun, and delve into our extensive ratings and reviews!

Most reviews are written by Avi Abrams, unless otherwise noted. Reviews also appear on our unique historical retrospective page Wonder Timeline of Science Fiction. Feel free to submit your own review, if a particular story is not listed here.

All major OFFICIAL AWARDS are highlighted in BLUE
("winner" has a letter "W" by it, otherwise it is a runner-up only)

Our PERSONAL AWARDS (ratings) are highlighted in RED and PURPLE:
--/ first place :
--/ second place :
--/ third place :

--/ fourth place :

--/ cool : (equal to fifth place)

These awards are given in the following categories:
- novel :
- series :
- novella :
- story :
- collection :

Also, there are our personal STYLE / GENRE SPECIFIC AWARDS. These reflect the story's content and the lasting impression on the reader:

--/ wonder award
sense-of-wonder, "visual intensity" and inventiveness

--/ idea award
originality of idea / concept

--/ adventure award
exhilarating plot, excitement / action

--/ style award
outstanding literary qualities, inimitable style

--/ romance award
intense and beautiful love / relationships

--/ humour award
funny and cool

--/ emotion award
touching, lasting impression, sensitivity

--/ shock value
altogether wild

--/ awesome scale
mind-boggling; further enhances sense-of-wonder

--/ rare find
very hard to locate, mostly from old pulps, never reprinted, etc.

Again, please feel free to leave your own review or comment under every writer's entry; also recommend us other stories you liked.