"The ideal length for science fiction is the novelette," proclaims SFWA Grand Master James Gunn, in the introduction to this long out-of-print volume. To prove this now widely accepted assertion, this collection includes the original short fiction that would form the basis for three of his most acclaimed novels.
"The Cave of Night" formed the heart of the novel Station in Space. It has been dramatized on radio and was chosen for inclusion in Isaac Asimov and Martin H. Greenberg's The Great SF Stories: 1955.
"The Hedonist" became part of the highly acclaimed The Joy Makers.
"New Blood" and "Medic" became sections of perhaps his most famous novel, The Immortals. The book was made into a movie, from which the ABC TV series The Immortal was made.
These novels began as the short fiction represented herein, and deal respectively with the conquest of space and the ordeals and sacrifices it will require; the science of happiness—what if universal happiness is required?; and the implications of immortality. Thought-provoking and disturbing, these speculations into the mind and heart of humanity reveal why James Gunn's fiction deserves its rightful place among some of the best the field has to offer.
James Gunn is a retired professor emeritus of English at the University of Kansas, Lawrence, and the recipient of numerous awards for his scholarship and non-fiction, including the prestigious Hugo award.
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