Far Horizons by Robert Silverberg, editor
Far Horizons: All New Tales from the Greatest Worlds of Science FictionAnyone who has read much science fiction knows that exciting worlds are created in authors’ minds that do not stay contained in one book. The story may have started that way, and been completed in the one volume, but there is so much more that can be told about that universe that has come to life. Often a set of novels are written about these places.
Even then, more stories can be found set against the defined backgrounds and story lines. That is the purpose of Far Horizons. The authors represented here were asked to revisit their worlds and write a novella about it with a new story. Known characters could be used, or new one imagined. The reader could gain more knowledge of people and places already met, or discover a brand new galaxy to explore.
As I’ve stated before, Anne McCaffrey is one of my favorites. It was a pleasure to revisit Helva, the singing ship, and Niall, her brawn partner, in “The Ship that Returned.” I now feel the need to discover David Brin‘s Uplift Universe after reading “Temptation.” It was fun visiting with Orson Scott Card‘s Ender Wiggins again, as well as Nancy Kress‘ Sleepless. I’ve not read Frederik Pohl‘s Heeches books, but “The Boy Who Would Live Forever” is a good introduction to them. Others did not attract me. I still have no desire to read Greg Bear‘s The Way series. I also admit I did not read Joe Haldeman‘s “A Separate War” because it is part of the Forever War group, and I have that novel waiting for me on my pile. This novella follows the first novel, and I did not want to spoil it.
There are times it would have been helpful to have read some of the original novels. But for the most part, these stand well alone. We all have different tastes, as this collection shows. The worlds we re-meet here are all famous in their own right. Some I’ll like better than other, and so will you. Enjoy!