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Conflict Paperback – July, 1984

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 284 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; First Edition edition (July 1984)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0523485727
  • ISBN-13: 978-0523485720
  • Product Dimensions: 4.1 x 6.8 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,648,148 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

The bestselling author of such classic novels as Brain Wave and The Boat of a Million Years, Poul Anderson won just about every award the science fiction and fantasy field has to offer. He has won multiple Hugos and Nebulas, the John W. Campbell Award, The Locus Poll Award, the Skylark Award, and the SFWA Grandmaster Award for Lifetime Achievement. His recent books include Harvest of Stars, The Stars are also On Fire, Operation Chaos, Operation Luna, Genesis, Mother of Kings, and Going for Infinity, a collection and retrospective of his life's work. Poul Anderson lived in Orinda, California where he passed away in 2001.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Roger J. Buffington TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 18, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"Conflict" is comprised of ten short stories all of which deal with conflicts occurring in various times, from the near to distant future of mankind. Poul Anderson is at his best when writing about this subject, and most of these stories are truly excellent. In fact, the only reason I deprived this one of a fifth star is that one or two of the stories were not Anderson's best. But make no mistake: most of these stories are worthy of five stars.
There are many different scenarios in this collection, and several of them are outstanding both for the quality of Anderson's writing, which is almost always superlatively good, to the sheer imagination that went into the stories. "The Pugilist" is an utterly brilliant work dealing with a future in which the United States has been subdued and brought into the Soviet bloc. The story postulates an utterly believable scenario and Anderson vividly shows how such a thing might have been. Its question: can the country re-acquire its former love of liberty and freedom? Or has dictatorship and oppression taken root too firmly? Anderson asks the right questions. The ending packs a formidable punch. In "Among Thieves" Anderson takes us to the far future, when mankind has spread amongst numerous stellar systems, but has not outgrown the institution of war. Here, once again, his speculations as to the possible reasons for, and nature of, future conflict make for a superb story.
Anderson really cared about both the causes of, and forms of, human conflict, and the depth of his concern is what makes this collection a superb one that most readers will thoroughly enjoy.
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Format: Hardcover
Contemporary writers of science fiction sometimes churn out readable books, and there are a handful who are on their way to joining the ranks of the Classic Masters -- Verne, Wells, Bradbury, Heinlein, Asimov, Clark and many others. Every now and then, it's a worthwhile exercise to read some of the older works by these Masters, not only because they are superlative, but to have a better appreciation for the genre against which to measure contemporary offerings.

There can be no serious debate that the late Poul Anderson is among the front ranks of the Classic Masters of Sci-Fi. His three Nebula Awards and seven Hugos barely establish his credentials. "Conflict", a collection of ten short stories published by Tor in 1983, gives the reader a fine survey of Anderson's vision and engaging writing.

These ten shorties were written between 1956 ("Details") and 1973 ("The Pugilist"). All deal with the theme of conflict in the Human culture. Although there is more than enough scientific speculation to satisfy even the most demanding Sci-Fi connosiour, none deal directly with a Homo vs. ET conflict. The stories really drive home one of the main premises of all great Sci-Fi writing -- that the themes and morals and plots are about US, not about THEM (whoever "THEM" may happen to be). Each story also portrays the role of individual people caught up in the swirl of historic events, and explores how each responds to the challenges of their own predicaments. Through these personal "conflicts" and resolutions, Anderson explores and establishes his own concept of what basic Human Nature is about, and sets an ideal by which actual history, events, and people can be measured.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ray Francis on January 7, 2006
Format: Paperback
from the back cover of the August 1983 TOR paperback edition

ANGELS ABOVE, DEVILS BELOW... Since the first human stood upright the stars have been a source of wonderment and inspiration. All our heavens have been placed in ... the heavens, our hells in the depths of earth. Angels above, devils below. Mankind between.

But perhaps heaven isn't so heavenly. Perhaps those who live there are as self-interested and violence-prone as any earthbound mortal. And even if they're not, we will be there soon.

Cause enough for CONFLICT.










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