Friday, October 16, 2009

10 Stories you wouldn’t know are Martian Science Fiction, Volume 4

This is Volume 4 of a project whose goal is to compile a long list of stories you wouldn’t know are about Mars or Martians by simply reading the titles. Some of the stories you can read online or purchase through sites such as Fictionwise, but most you cannot. The Locus Index to Science Fiction and the Internet Speculative Fiction Database are good tools for obtaining citations that you can take to your local library. If your library does not have the anthology or magazine mentioned in the citation, ask your librarian about an “Interlibrary Loan Request.” I’ve been able to borrow old anthologies and get photocopies of stories from old pulp magazines with few problems.

Here are the ten stories that comprise Volume 4:

31. “The Fate of the Poseidonia” (1927), by Clare Winger Harris
A woman aboard the captured space liner Poseidonia is taken to the Red Planet amid a clandestine campaign by Martians to steal Earth’s water.

32. “Thia of the Drylands” (1932), by Harl Vincent
A former space pilot with a mysterious Martian disease travels to the Red Planet for a cure, only to become “enmeshed in a complex series of intrigues involving Terrestrial secret service men, gangster-like Martians who want to kill him, and the beautiful Princess Thia.”

33. “Lost Art” (1943), by George O. Smith
Two scientists exploring the Red Planet discover an ancient Martian electronic device.

34. “The Hills of Home” (1956), by Alfred Coppel
“Mars is where I belong. With my friends, Tars Tarkas the great Green Jeddak, and Carter, the Warlord, and all the beautiful brave people.”

35. “Eye of an Octopus” (1966), by Larry Niven
The first humans on Mars uncover an abandoned Martian “well.”

36. “In Lonely Lands” (1971), by Harlan Ellison
An old blind man on the Red Planet awaits the arrival of death with his Martian friend.

37. “Night of the Cooters” (1987), by Howard Waldrop
“HG Wells' Martian visitors land in Texas, and some good ol' boys give them more trouble than they can handle.”

38. “The Difficulties Involved in Photographing Nix Olympica” (1991), by Brian W. Aldiss
A man on Mars experiences alienation and agoraphobia when he is sent off to add some sense of human scale to a mountain being photographed by a companion.

39. "Out of the Blue, Into the Red" (2002), by James Lovegrove
An “epistolary story, as a father and son try to reconcile their differences as the son heads off to Mars.”

40. "Zora and the Land Ethic Nomads" (2007), by Mary Turzillo
Set on Mars, “a strong adventure about how a radical Land Ethic Nomad tries to drive off-planet all settlers by seemingly sabotaging their nuclear plants.”


See Volume 1 for stories #1 through #10, Volume 2 for stories #11 through #20, and Volume 3 for stories #21 through #30.


Tinkoo said...

Add another one - Walter M Miller's "Crucifixus Etiam", if you don't have it already for a future post. Very good read about a Mars terraforming project. I read it in one of the Isaas Asimov Presents Great SF Stories books - vol 15.

Paul said...

Thanks, Tinkoo. In the past, your blog mentioned two other stories by Larry Niven. I need to include those as well.