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E Pluribus Unicorn Hardcover – May, 1997


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Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Lightyear Pr (May 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 089968372X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0899683720
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,517,261 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Love all this guys books.
Laura Evans
Wildly different from one another, they also show the true beauty of the genius of Sturgeon.
cha cha
Every time I read it, I find new favorites.
frumiousb

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Dave_42 on May 31, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
"E Pluribus Unicorn" is a collection of 13 short fiction stories from one of speculative fiction's best known authors. There are no science fiction stories; instead there is a mix of horror and fantasy. The stories were written between 1947 and 1953 and with the exception of one story were all published before in a variety of the magazines from that era. In addition, there is an "Essay on Sturgeon" written as an introduction to the book, by Groff Conklin.

Most of the stories are very good, and two of them have been recognized recently by the SF community. "The World Well Lost" was awarded the Spectrum Hall Of Fame award in 2004 (In a tie with "Slow River" by Nicola Griffith, and "Swordspoint" by Ellen Kushner). "A Saucer of Loneliness" was nominated for the Retro Hugo for short stories (eligible in 1953) which were given out in 2004. The remainder of the stories are also worthwhile reading.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By E. A. Lovitt HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on October 28, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
These thirteen short stories (published between 1947 and 1953) by Theodore Sturgeon are stamped with his own unique blend of horror and beauty. At the height of his popularity in the 1950s he was the most anthologized author alive, although now he may best be known for his two `Star Trek' episodes, "Amok Time" and "Shore Leave." Among the SF/Fantasy authors who acknowledge Sturgeon's influence on their own writings are Ray Bradbury and Harlan Ellison. The author Sturgeon reminds me of is Jerzy Kosiñski, who is best known for his novel, "The Painted Bird"--not because they wrote about the same subjects, but because they both forced their readers to acknowledge that beauty can be horrible and horror can be beautiful.

Take your time with these stories. Sip their strange wine.

"The Silken-Swift"--A unicorn must choose between a beautiful virago who is technically a virgin, and a woman who was raped by one of the virago's frustrated suitors.

"The Professor's Teddy-Bear"--A monstrous teddy-bear feeds on a little boy's dreams of his own future.

"Bianca's Hands"--A man falls in love with a mentally handicapped woman's hands.

"A Saucer of Loneliness"--A flying saucer seeks out the lonliest people on Earth.

"The World Well Lost"--Two aliens who are deeply in love with each other must be returned as prisoners to the planet of their origin. What horrible crime have they committed?

"It Wasn't Syzygy"--Gloria meets the man of her dreams, then rejects him for a hunk who probably spits and scratches at his crotch in public. What happens to the dream guy?

"The Music"--A page-and-a-half story that might be the murderous dream of an inhabitant of an insane asylum.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By cha cha on June 29, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The very first Sturgeon story I ever read was, oddly, 'The Silken-Swift' which is also the first story in this anthology. It was in a tattered copy of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction from 1953. I was drunk, and sitting in the Horseshoe Lounge in South Austin, Texas, sipping spiced rum and diet coke, not feeling like socializing, and so I read. Not knowing what to expect, but also knowing the side stories about Sturgeon-- the Star Trek, and him being the soul of Kilgore Trout --I began a story that was like nothing else I have ever read under the guise of Science Fiction.

Most people call Sturgeon "speculative fiction" or "fantasy" but what Sturgeon is, in reality, is "Literature." His manipulation of words is on par with Nabakov and his understanding of human nature and emotions is beyond the restraints of a genre label. That first story was a doozy. From what I've read later, it was considered the beginning of his "golden" period, where he found his stride and became more than just a pulp writer. However, later excursions into the Sturgeon library led me to what really should be just a basic alien-life-form-inhabits-killer-machinery story, the legendary 'Killdozer.' If you haven't read it, or have, but not recently, go back, the prose, the poetry of prose, so to speak, is present even in the lovingly detailed descriptions of operating heavy machinery, and the basest of plotlines.

But back to 'e pluribus unicorn.' In this volume, 'The Silken-Swift' is just the beginning, on a journey of utterly perfect Sturgeon stories, some short (2 pages) and some long, and all of them shine with one thing in common: They are all uncommon. Sheer beauty and sheer horror intertwined lyrically to the point where one cannot decide which is preferable.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By E. A. Lovitt HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on October 28, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
These thirteen short stories (published between 1947 and 1953) by Theodore Sturgeon are stamped with his own unique blend of horror and beauty. At the height of his popularity in the 1950s he was the most anthologized author alive, although now he may best be known for his two `Star Trek' episodes, "Amok Time" and "Shore Leave." Among the SF/Fantasy authors who acknowledge Sturgeon's influence on their own writings are Ray Bradbury and Harlan Ellison. The author Sturgeon reminds me of is Jerzy Kosiñski, who is best known for his novel, "The Painted Bird"--not because they wrote about the same subjects, but because they both forced their readers to acknowledge that beauty can be horrible and horror can be beautiful.

Take your time with these stories. Sip their strange wine.

"The Silken-Swift"--A unicorn must choose between a beautiful virago who is technically a virgin, and a woman who was raped by one of the virago's frustrated suitors.

"The Professor's Teddy-Bear"--A monstrous teddy-bear feeds on a little boy's dreams of his own future.

"Bianca's Hands"--A man falls in love with a mentally handicapped woman's hands.

"A Saucer of Loneliness"--A flying saucer seeks out the lonliest people on Earth.

"The World Well Lost"--Two aliens who are deeply in love with each other must be returned as prisoners to the planet of their origin. What horrible crime have they committed?

"It Wasn't Syzygy"--Gloria meets the man of her dreams, then rejects him for a hunk who probably spits and scratches at his crotch in public. What happens to the dream guy?

"The Music"--A page-and-a-half story that might be the murderous dream of an inhabitant of an insane asylum.
Read more ›
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