When mankind moves out to the stars, the colonists of the future will remake the worlds they inhabit in their image. Included here are twenty stories from the most imaginative writers in the field, including:Poul Anderson * Stephen Baxter * Gregory Benford * Arthur C. Clarke * Greg Egan * Joe Haldeman * Philip Jennings * William H. Kieth * Geoffrey A. Landis * Ian McDonaldWhen mankind moves out to the stars, the colonists of the future will remake the worlds they inhabit in their image. Included here are twenty stories from the most imaginative writers in the field, including:Poul Anderson * Stephen Baxter * Gregory Benford * Arthur C. Clarke * Greg Egan * Joe Haldeman * Philip Jennings * William H. Kieth * Geoffrey A. Landis * Ian McDonald * Richard McKenna * Laura Mixon * G. David Nordley * Robert Reed * Kim Stanley Robinson * Pamela Sargent * Cordwainer Smith * Bruce Sterling * John Varley * Roger ZelaznyThese are the stories of the explorers and pioneers who transform their destinations in the image of their distant home--exciting tales of alien landscapes and the struggle to make them suit human desires.Contents ix • Preface (Worldmakers: SF Adventures in Terraforming) • essay by Gardner Dozois1 • The Big Rain • [Psychotechnic League] • (1954) • novella by Poul Anderson50 • When the People Fell • [The Instrumentality of Mankind] • (1959) • shortstory by Cordwainer Smith60 • Before Eden • (1961) • shortstory by Arthur C. Clarke69 • Hunter, Come Home • (1963) • novelette by Richard McKenna99 • The Keys to December • (1966) • novelette by Roger Zelazny118 • Retrograde Summer • [Eight Worlds] • (1975) • novelette by John Varley134 • Shall We Take a Little Walk? • (1981) • novelette by Gregory Benford150 • The Catharine Wheel • (1984) • novelette by Ian McDonald (aka The Catharine Wheel (Our Lady of Tharsis))166 • Sunken Gardens • [Shaper/Mechanist] • (1984) • shortstory by Bruce Sterling179 • Out of Copyright • (1989) • shortstory by Charles Sheffield193 • A Place with Shade • [The Remarkables] • (1995) • novelette by Robert Reed221 • Dawn Venus • (1995) • novelette by G. David Nordley245 • For White Hill • (1995) • novella by Joe Haldeman277 • The Road to Reality • (1996) • novelette by Phillip C. Jennings311 • Ecopoiesis • (1997) • novella by Geoffrey A. Landis342 • People Came from Earth • (1999) • shortstory by Stephen Baxter352 • Fossils • (1999) • novelette by William H. Keith, Jr.379 • A Martian Romance • (1999) • novelette by Kim Stanley Robinson394 • Dream of Venus • (2000) • novelette by Pamela Sargent417 • At Tide’s Turning • (2001) • novelette by Laura J. Mixon...
|Title||:||Worldmakers: SF Adventures in Terraforming|
|Number of Pages||:||446 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Worldmakers: SF Adventures in Terraforming Reviews
A mixed bag, as is often true of SF story collections. I found a review copy when it was published, read much of it then (which was more than a dozen years ago), and finished it recently. Maybe what’s most striking about the book is the overall idea: if humankind wanted or needed to make another planet livable, how might we imagine it happening? What might the technologies be? What might the human dramas be? Some answers are here, in stories that date as far back as 1955. It’s not an idle notion; Stephen Hawking brought worldwide attention to it in 2010, when he warned that we need to find a second home because ours may not last.
Fictionwise has this download working once again, so I can now read the book I purchased!
Arranged chronologically from 1955 through 2001, Dozois' anthology Worldmakers: SF Adventures in Terraforming, is a tightly-themed collection of science fiction shorts. It's a good overview of the terraforming subject's treatment within the genre but the anthology seems to lack any stand-out stories — there are no great masterpieces in here. Which is not to say that it's not an enjoyable collection. I mostly picked it up for research purposes (re terraforming and first contact[†:]) but found it to be a good bed-side item. Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this collection is that, because it is arranged chronologically, you get a sense of how views of terraforming have evolved within the genre over time — what are the in vogue technologies? how central is terraforming to the story? what sorts of politics are involved?As for the computed average of my ratings on the individual stories themselves (out to four decimal places), Worldmakers scores: 3.2250Includes: • "The Big Rain" by Poul Anderson (1954): ★★½• "When the People Fell" by Cordwainer Smith (1959): ★★½» There's a narrative whimsy that's a little off-putting; also, reading this made me recall this essay: The Yellow Peril, Fu Manchu, and the Ethnic Future by Lisa Katayama.• "Before Eden" by Arthur C. Clarke (1961): ★★★» A bit dry and stilted but the twist at the makes up for it.• "Hunter, Come Home" by Richard McKenna (1963): ★★★★» Reminded me a lot of the fungus/mindworms stuff from Sid Meier's "Alpha Centauri" — and that made it extra endearing.• "The Keys to December" by Roger Zelazny (1966): ★★½• "Retrograde Summer" by John Varley (1974): ★★• "Shall We Take A Little Walk?" by Gregory Benford (1981): ★★• "The Catharine Wheel" by Ian McDonald (1984): ★★★½» Felt like "typical McDonald" (gels with my image of his work as reflected best in River of Gods) but felt like it was working more with cyborgian tropes than strict terraforming.• "Sunken Gardens" by Bruce Sterling (1984): ★★★★½» Brilliant. But I love Sterling's work. And the Shaper/Mechanist stuff is always great.• "Out of Copyright" by Charles Sheffield (1989): ★★★½» The terraforming bit seemed pretty tangential. Also, when did Sheffield start channelling Cory Doctorow?• "A Place With Shade" by Robert Reed (1995): ★★★» Most interesting is the way that Reed casts terraforming in a light that makes it look like the engineer's rigor has given way to the dilettante's art.• "Dawn Venus" by G. David Nordley (1995): ★★★• "For White Hill" by Joe Haldeman (1995): ★★★★★» Stunning. Well-crafted and taut.• "The Road to Reality" by Phillip C. Jennings (1996): ★★½» Another where the terraforming tropes were off on the side. Speculating about whether to leave a fossil record when building a planet? Cool. Veering off headlong into a cyberworld prison? Huh?• "Ecopoesis" by Geoffrey A. Landis (1997): ★★★★» One of the more interesting stories in the whole collection — and I say that even though parts can be a bit hard to follow (esp. w/r/t/ keeping track of characters) and also despite how the romantic bit felt tacked on.• "People Came From Earth" by Stephen Baxter (1999): ★★★★• "Fossils" by William H. Keith, Jr. (1999): ★★½• "A Martian Romance" by Kim Stanley Robinson (1999): ★★★½» A good story re pacing etc. (and a good ending) but the lead-in was... a little weak? Perhaps this one reads better if you're familiar with the back-story from Robinson's previous stories set in this milieu.• "Dream of Venus" by Pamela Sargent (2000): ★★» Could have been much stronger if there was more of a focus on Miriam. (Or: "I didn't much care for this narrator.") The premise works (and makes a good accompaniment to "Ecopoesis") but something about it doesn't carry.• "At Tide's Turning" by Laura J. Mixon (2001): ★★★★★» Great. The terraforming bits fall to the wayside a bit but the rest of the story is so strong (strong enough to make this one the best in the collection?) that it stands well despite falling slightly off the theme. Also: Mixon offers us an well-realized milieu with a great vocabulary.---† = Though there's barely any first-contact subject matter in here at all.
Nothing terrible, but also nothing good enough to hold interest.