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Ross Rocklynne

"Abyss Of Darkness"
(Darkness series)
© Astonishing Stories, Dec 1942
The Sun Destroyers, 1973
--/ fourth place space sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ awesome scale
--/ idea award: nebula beings

"And Then There Was One"
© Astounding Stories, Feb 1940
The Men And The Mirror, 1973
--/ cool sf story


"At the Center of Gravity"
(Colbie & Deverel)
© Astounding Stories, Jun 1936
The Men and the Mirror, 1973
--/ fourth place space sf novella
--/ idea award
--/ wonder award

This hard-science space story describes the plight of two men trapped at the center of a hollow planet approaching the Sun. That planet is Vulcan, believed to be closer to our Sun than Mercury. I personally think it is as good as anything Asimov or Heinlein wrote in the "problem solving in space" sub-genre; it has a great plot, brisk narrative style and keeps the reader guessing. One of the better efforts of Ross Rocklynne, who should be reprinted more often.
review: 03-Aug-06 (read in 2006)


© Astounding, Jan 1943
--Groff Conklin's story selection
--/ cool sf story

"The Bottled Men"
© Astounding Stories, Jun 1946
The Men And The Mirror, 1973
--/ cool sf story


"Captives of the Weir-Wind"
© Planet Stories, Sum 1946
--/ cool sf novella
--/ rare find

A very rare novella, good excitement, awesome illustrations (will scan some in, when I have time). Planetary adventure with a love triangle, damsel in distress, space wrecks, etc. However, this is not a healthy example of such sub-genre. Something is missing, and it's called "wonder". Rocklynne is a dependable writer, but this one he wrote for the money.
review: 28-Jul-06 (read in 2002)


"Daughter Of Darkness"
(Darkness series)
© Astonishing Stories, Nov 1941
The Sun Destroyers, 1973
--/ fourth place space sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ awesome scale
--/ idea award: nebula kids

"The Diversifal"
© Planet Stories, Win 1945
--/ cool sf story

"The Empress of Mars"
© Fantastic Adventures, May 1939
--/ cool sf story
--/ rare find

"Into The Darkness"
(Darkness Series)
© 1934, original
Astonishing Stories, Jun 1940
The Sun Destroyers, 1973
--/ third place space sf novella
--/ wonder award
--/ idea award
--/ emotion award
--/ awesome scale

© Astounding, Aug 1942
--/ cool sf story

"Jupiter Trap"
(Colbie & Deverel)
© Astounding Stories, Aug 1937
The Men and the Mirror, 1973
--/ fourth place space sf story
--/ idea award
--/ wonder award
--/ adventure award

"The Man Who Never Lived"
© 1940, Amazing Stories
--/ cool sf story
--/ rare find

"The Men & The Mirror"
(Colbie & Deverel)
© Astounding, Jul 1938
The Men and the Mirror, 1973
--/ fourth place space sf story
--/ idea award
--/ wonder award

"The Men And The Mirror" (coll)
© Ace Books, 1973
--/ cool space sf collection
--/ wonder award

© Astounding, Sep 1940
--/ cool sf story
--/ wonder award

"Rebel of the Darkness"
(also as "Revolt of the Devil Star")
(Darkness series)
© Imagination, Feb 1951
The Sun Destroyers, 1973
--/ fourth place space sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ awesome scale
--/ idea award: nebula beings

"Revolt of the Devil Star"
(also as "Rebel of the Darkness")
(Darkness series)
© Imagination, Feb 1951
The Sun Destroyers, 1973
--/ fourth place space sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ awesome scale
--/ idea award: nebula beings

"The Sun Destroyers" (coll)
(Darkness series)
© Ace Double, 1973
--/ third place sf collection
--/ wonder award
--/ awesome scale
--/ idea award: nebula beings

"The Sound Of Space"
© Fantastic, Oct 1968
--/ fourth place space sf story
--/ wonder award
--/ emotion award
--/ rare find

"They Fly So High"
© Amazing Stories, Jun 1952
The Men and the Mirror, 1973
--/ cool sf story

"Winner Takes All"
© Time to Come, ed. A.Derleth 1954
--/ cool sf story


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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:
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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.