Tuesday, February 9, 2010

10 Stories you wouldn’t know are Martian Science Fiction, Volume 5

This is Volume 5 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 5:

41. "Shambleau" (1933), by Catherine L. Moore
A retelling of the ancient Greek myth of Medusa, set on Mars and starring interplanetary hero Northwest Smith.

42. "Under the Sand-Seas" (1940), by Oliver E. Saari
A Scientific expedition on Mars is “assaulted by a semi-intelligent form of life resembling prairie tumble-weed.”

43. "A Lack of Verisimilitude" (1952), by Walt Sheldon
A Sci-Fi story about writing Sci-Fi stories. The main character, who is the author, and a Martian “collaborate to write six science fiction stories set on Mars.”

44. "Earthmen Bearing Gifts” (1960), by Fredric Brown
“Mars had gifts to offer and Earth had much in return -- if delivery could be arranged!”

45. "How the Heroes Die” (1966), by Larry Niven
“Troubles of an all-male expedition to Mars.”

46. “Hellas is Florida” (1977), by Gordon Eklund and Gregory Benford. A “suspenseful tale about an expedition to search for life on Mars.”

47. "Too Much Loosestrife" (1987), by Frederik Pohl

48. “One Small Spin” (1997), by John G. Hemry
“NASA runs into problems with automated probes sent to Mars.”

49. “The War of the Worldviews” (2002), by James Morrow
“Perhaps the wildest, most original take ever on the oldest trope of SF, alien invasion.”

50. "Gone" (2009), by Stuart Atkinson
A young girl copes with the death of NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Spirit.


See Volume 1 for stories #1 through #10, Volume 2 for stories #11 through #20, Volume 3 for stories #21 through #30, and Volume 4 for stories #31 through #40.

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