Sunday, May 30, 2010

Authors, works, characters mentioned in Allen Steele’s story “The Emperor of Mars”

I've finished reading “The Emperor of Mars,” the new recursive SF/F novelette by Hugo Award-winning author Allen M. Steele that was published in the June 2010 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction magazine. As mentioned previously, the plot revolves around Jeff Halbert, a roughneck stationed on a near-future Mars, who, after suffering severe emotional trauma, starts reading the contents of the Planetary Society's “Visions of Mars” DVD library that he recovers from NASA’s dead Phoenix lander. Unfortunately, Jeff's fragile state of mind and reading habits lead to some rather erratic behavior and he evolves into Emperor Jeffery the First, sovereign monarch of the Great Martian Empire, warlord and protector of the red planet.

Despite a few minor weaknesses, “The Emperor of Mars” is, quite simply, a wonderful and brilliant work. If you love Martian science fiction & fantasy, technology, scribes, books and libraries, you absolutely have to read this novelette! The first few pages are posted on Asimov’s website and I’ve compiled a list of all the Martian SF&F authors, works, characters and artists mentioned in the storyline:

Poul Anderson, Isaac Asimov, Greg Bear, Gregory Benford, Leigh Brackett, Ray Bradbury, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Arthur C. Clarke, Otis Adelbert Kline, Michael Moorcock, Larry Niven, H. Beam Piper, Garrett P. Serviss, Theodore Sturgeon, John Varley, A.E. van Vogt, Stanley G. Weinbaum, Orson Welles, H.G. Wells, Jack Williamson, Roger Zelazny

The War of the Worlds (1898)
Edison's Conquest of Mars (1898)
“A Martian Odyssey” (1934)
“The Enchanted Village” (1950)
“The Martian Way” (1952)
“Omnilingual” (1957)
“The Martian Crown Jewels” (1958)
The Swordsman of Mars (1960)
“A Rose For Ecclesiastes” (1963)
“Transit of Earth” (1971)
“A Martian Ricorso” (1976)
“In the Hall of the Martian Kings” (1977)

John Carter, Flash Gordon, Lieutenant Gullivar Jones, Eric John Stark, Tar Tarkas, Dejah Thoris, Thuvia

Chesley Bonestell, Ed Emshwiller, Michael Whelan

Seriously, get your ass to Fictionwise and buy the June 2010 issue Asimov’s Science Fiction magazine!

No comments: