Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Black Star Passes

The Black Star Passes (1953) by John W. Campbell, Jr.


A sky pirate armed with superior weapons of his own invention....

First contact with an alien race dangerous enough to threaten the safety of two planets....

The arrival of an unseen dark sun whose attendant marauders aimed at the very end of civilization in this Solar System....

These were the three challenges that tested the skill and minds of the brilliant team of scientist-astronauts Arcot, Wade, and Morey. Their initial adventures are a classic of science-fiction which first brought the name of their author, John W. Campbell, into prominence as a master of the inventive imagination.

JOHN W. CAMPBELL first started writing in 1930 when his first short story, When the Atoms Failed, was accepted by a science-fiction magazine. At that time he was twenty years old and still a student at college. As the title of the story indicates, he was even at that time occupied with the significance of atomic energy and nuclear physics.

For the next seven years, Campbell, bolstered by a scientific background that ran from childhood experiments, to study at Duke University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, wrote and sold science-fiction, achieving for himself an enviable reputation in the field.

In 1937 he became the editor of Astounding Stories magazine and applied himself at once to the task of bettering the magazine and the field of s-f writing in general. His influence on science-fiction since then cannot be underestimated. Today he still remains as the editor of that magazine's evolved and redesigned successor, Analog.

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