Tuesday, 10 July 2007

Steampunk Reviews: The Science Fiction of Edgar Allen Poe

'The Science Fiction of Edgar Allen Poe', Harold Beaver (Editor)
Paperback, Published: December 1976, by Penguin UK.
ISBN-13: 9780140431063, ISBN-10: 0140431063.
16 short stories:- MS. Found in a Bottle; The Unparelleled Adventure of One Hans Pfaall; The Conversation of Eiros and Charmion; A Descent into the Maelstom; The Colloquy of Monos and Una; A Tale of the Ragged Mountains; The Balloon-Hoax; Mesmeric Revelation; The Thousand-and-Second Tale of Scherazade; Some Words with a Mummy; The Power of Words; The System of Dr. Tarr and Prof. Fether; The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar; Eureka: An Essay on the Material and Spiritual Universe; Mellonta Tauta; Von Kempelen and His Discovery.

My enjoyment in discovering this little book and its collection of 16 short stories, even its very existence was enough for me to try and track it down, and find out more about the works of the Founder of Science Fiction.

Each of the tales has extensive notes, and an individual critique by the Editor, which only enhances the collection, and helps draw you in to the imagination of the Victorians.

A World with its details and its querks, its Amateur Scientist, and Hobby Mathematicians exploring the very Nature of the World – Physical and Spiritual and of the unknown...

I wholeheartedly recommend that you read the splendid story entitled “The Thousand-and-Second Tale of Scheherazade”, as well as the lurid tale of “Some Words with a Mummy”, and beautifully crafted tale of “The Balloon-Hoax”, and the equally inspirational short story entitled “The Unparelleled Adventure of One Hans Pfaall”.

Poe's work as a Science Fiction writer is largely overlooked, but once you the reader have succumbedto his influences, His rightful place in the Literary “Valhalla” will be assured.


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