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When It Changed: 'Real Science' Science Fiction Paperback – April 1, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Carcanet Press Ltd.; 2 edition (April 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1905583192
  • ISBN-13: 978-1905583195
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,371,643 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Geoff Ryman is an author and editor whose work includes Air, Pol Pot’s Beautiful Daughter, and Tesseracts Nine. He is the founder of the Mundane Science Fiction movement and edited the Mundane Special Issue of Interzone magazine in 2008.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By E. J. Hillard on July 24, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a fan of Fred Hoyle ('The Black Cloud', etc.) I found this book to be a great read. I had concluded that sf had exclusively gone to fantasy. This is a refreshing reminder of what fiction about science can be.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful By mianfei on June 18, 2010
Format: Paperback
Although I have had pretensions of writing fantasy myself (in part because of my interest in stories of miracles that my relatives say cannot be true) I have had a tendency to follow most literary critics and believe that there is actually little of literary value in most fantasy novels and/or that they are essentially written for children.

I came to read "When It Changed: 'Real Science' Science Fiction" through my knowledge of Sara Maitland and her short story "Moss Witch" which I found interesting in light of the scientific knowledge shown from a learned woman of a very much pre-punk school. "Moss Witch" itself becomes much more interesting when one actually reads the full story: Maitland invents a very large life-form that is intelligent but absorbs water like it was a plant. Scientist Jennifer Rowntree, who is currently doing her own doctorate, does an excellent look at Maitland's story.

The other stories in the book are completely different, but I found them much better than I would have guessed from their actual content, most of which focuses on typical science-fiction topics from the possibility of water on Mars to the future of technology and how it could influence society. Such stories as Geoff Ryman's "You", Ken MacLeod's "Lifeforms" and Michael Arditti's "In the Event Of" have a maturity that is most unexpected from the world of science fiction because they actually allow for real intimacy with the characters and never appear disjointed.
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