Cover

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Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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Contents

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p. ix

List of Illustrations

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pp. xi-xii

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Acknowledgments

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p. xiii

Various forms of institutional support helped me complete this project, including a grant from Eastern Illinois University’s Office of Research and Sponsored Programs and release time provided by my college and department. The University of California at Riverside’s Bruce Pelz Fanzine Collection proved an invaluable resource as I conducted my research, and I am grateful to the staff of UCR’s Special Collections...

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Introduction: Parallel Worlds

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pp. 1-16

John Kilian Houston Brunner (September 24, 1934–August 25, 1995) once observed that while we all inhabit the same world, we live in and among parallel worlds.1 The personal and social, the ecological and technological—such realities coexist for us but do not necessarily cohere within our experience. Parallel worlds tugged...

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Chapter 1 Raising the Noise Level, 1951–66

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pp. 17-50

Brunner owed his first meaningful encounter with SF to happenstance. At the start of World War II, his father Anthony decided to support the war effort by running a farm in Brimfield, Herefordshire, and after the move, Brunner’s grandfather’s rare 1898 Heinemann edition of H. G. Wells’s The War of the Worlds (1898) ended up misshelved...

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Chapter 2 Fierce Speculation, 1967–75

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pp. 51-93

In September 1966, between finishing Quicksand (1967) and starting Stand on Zanzibar (1968), Brunner made a forceful and controversial statement at Tricon: “SF must go where the speculation is fiercest, or die.”1 The following year, as Guest of Honor at Briscon in the United Kingdom, he reiterated and expanded upon the point. Although...

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Chapter 3 At the Wrong End of Time, 1976–95

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pp. 94-118

Brunner’s retreat from the SF world at the height of his career related in part to his health. Not long after moving to Somerset and finishing The Shockwave Rider, he began to have excruciating headaches. During the summer of 1974, his doctor explained why: a skyrocketing blood pressure of 200 over 120 or, as Brunner termed it, acute hypertension “approaching the phone-the-undertaker level.” That September, just....

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Brunner’s Legacy: Foreign Constellations

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pp. 119-128

As one would expect, a wave of memorials followed in the wake of Brunner’s sudden and visible death. Some basic points of agreement about his legacy emerged quickly. Stand on Zanzibar was classed as his greatest achievement and, along with The Jagged Orbit, The Sheep Look Up, and The Shockwave Rider, portrayed as the foundation of his reputation. Several other popular works tended to receive special note here...

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Thrust Interview (1975)

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pp. 129-140

Thrust: Where do you get your ideas? Brunner: Oh, gosh! The “Where do you get your crazy ideas?” question, as you probably know, tends to make writers turn purple and starts smoke coming out of their ears. Everybody has ideas, and a lot of people have ideas that are even crazier than the ones that come to science-fiction writers. There is no such thing...

A John Brunner Bibliography

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pp. 141-160

Notes

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pp. 161-168

Bibliography of Secondary Sources

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pp. 169-176

Index

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pp. 177-184

About the Author, Production Notes, Back Cover

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p. 185