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Future On Ice [Format Kindle]

Orson Scott Card

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Descriptions du produit


The much-delayed follow-up to Future on Fire, another anthology of the best short SF from the 1980s, Future on Ice delivers a tight, choice collection from some of the genre's top names--Isaac Asimov, Octavia Butler, Greg Bear, George R.R. Martin, Nancy Kress, and others. SF anthologies live or die by the quality of their ideas, and Future on Ice doesn't disappoint: editor Orson Scott Card (a genre powerhouse himself) has put together an eclectic and thought-provoking set of 18 stories, from Butler's disturbing but imaginative vision of a burned-out future without language to Martin's Twilight Zone-esque retrospective on the life of an arrogant author, in which paintings of his characters come to life to haunt him. Other standouts include a classic dreaming android story from Asimov and Bear's galaxy-in-a-grain-of-sand tale, in which a person inadvertently becomes the living host to an entire universe. Card ably bookends the set with a story of his own and a compelling introductory essay on the Force and how sci-fi is really religious literature. (Other authors in the anthology include John Kessel, Gregory Benford, Andrew Weiner, David Zindell, C.J. Cherryh, Lewis Shiner, John Crowley, John Varley, S.C. Sykes, Karen Joy Fowler, and Walter Jon Williams.) --Paul Hughes

From School Library Journal

YA-A popular YA novelist and sci-fi writer has put together a second anthology of 18 short stories by important SF writers of the 1980s. It is just as powerful as Future on Fire (Tor, 1991). Set in places uncannily familiar or disturbingly bizarre, the selections tell of family love, robot ambitions, language and loneliness, misguided political negotiations, and, of course, an assortment of very strange creatures. Card's notes tell in a particularly humorous and anecdotal tone about his encounters with the authors. The book is also worth having just for Card's introductory essay in which he takes an intriguing look at the way religious "ideas" can be and are often explored at some depth in this genre. Thought-provoking and illuminating reading, but best of all, entertaining.
Cynthia J. Rieben, W. T. Woodson High School, Fairfax, VA
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 2830 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 432 pages
  • Editeur : Tor Books; Édition : 1st (1 janvier 2000)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B004O0TUQC
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Word Wise: Non activé
  • Composition améliorée: Activé

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Amazon.com: 4.4 étoiles sur 5  7 commentaires
9 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Excellent selection of 1980s SF 18 avril 2001
Par Richard R. Horton - Publié sur Amazon.com
This anthology was planned as a companion to Card's Future on Fire, and together the two were meant to showcase the best short science fiction of the 1980's. For the most part his choices stand up brilliantly. This is quite legitimately an anthology which can stand on its own or with its companion as a "Best of the '80s": no doubt these aren't the very best 18 stories from that decade, but on any given day, they'll do.
My favorite story here, and in my opinion one of the best SF stories of all time, is Nancy Kress' "Out of All Them Bright Stars" (winner of the 1985 Nebula for Best Short Story). This quiet, quiet, story, about a waitress in a diner and her encounter with an alien, illustrates as clearly as I can imagine the use of SF to examine human nature. It's a story that simply wouldn't work without being SF, without aliens and the implication of star travel, but its theme is all about what's within us. Lovely writing, perfect characters: one of those stories that just stop me dead and makes me think for some time after I finish it.
Several other stories included won major SF awards. Among them, I think Greg Bear's "Blood Music" (winner of both Hugo and Nebula for Best Novelet), a truly terrifying story about the consequences of engineering bacteria-sized microchips, and using them to maintain the body's health, holds up best. In this story Bear took his idea and ran with it to the fullest extent, facing every implication. A story that is similarly chilling in implication, John Varley's novella "Press Enter []" (also winner of both the Hugo and Nebula), doesn't seem to hold up quite as well. His central notion of computers linking up and taking over really isn't very new (cf. Ellison's "I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream" for just one example), and his mechanism, while well-depicted and creepy, doesn't convince. Nor does the (well-depicted and engaging) love story quite convince. But the story is still a great read.
Also among my personal favorite '80s stories are "Speech Sounds" by Octavia Butler, "Snow" by John Crowley, and "The Pure Product" by John Kessel. The first is a moving story of life in near-future Los Angeles, after a plague has destroyed the speech centers of everyone. The horror of the loss of communication with other people is very well portrayed. "Snow" is a beautiful fable about memory and love. A woman of the jet set records incidents from her life over many years, and her one-time gigolo/lover/husband plays them back after her death. But the technology only allows random access to these "memories", and the memories degrade over time. The effect is quiet and profound. "The Pure Product" is quite another thing. A man (apparently from the future) goes on a rampage through '80s North America. The story is fast moving and scary. At one level it's a harder-edged take on the same theme as C. L. Moore's classic "Vintage Season", but at another level we worry that the empathy-deficient people from the future are us.
Any anthology which aims to be "definitive" will surely include prominent stories, like those mentioned above, and like George R. R. Martin's Nebula winner "Portraits of His Children" and Isaac Asimov's well-known late story "Robot Dreams". But I like an anthology to include some surprises, as well. Two good, less familiar, choices are S. C. Sykes' "Rockabye Baby", and Andrew Weiner's intriguing "Klein's Machine". Card also chooses stories by Lisa Goldstein, Gregory Benford, David Zindell, C. J. Cherryh, Walter Jon Williams, Karen Joy Fowler, Lewis Shiner, and himself. Probably the only story in the book which doesn't quite seem to me to belong is Asimov's slight, gimmicky, "Robot Dreams". This anthology eminently succeeds in presenting a selection which represents the short SF of the 1980s at its best, and at its widest variety.
13 internautes sur 15 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great addition to your sci-fi anthology collection 1 août 2000
Par Robert A. Giacobbe - Publié sur Amazon.com
I am a high-volume consumer of science fiction anthologies, and over the past 10 years have probably read more than 500 short story collections, mostly in sci-fi. I easily rank "Future on Ice" in the top 10% of those readings.
There are several reasons why I enjoyed the book so much. First, the roster of authors is impressive, with Nancy Kress, Octavia Butler, Greg Bear, Gregory Benford and Card himself, just to name a few. With these authors, the quality and entertainment value of the stories has to be high.
Second, it seemed almost each story had great depth, plot and sci-fi content. This is a rarity in anthologies; I have a personal ranking system for anthologies, and if I can legitimately say that 50% or more of the short stories held my interest and were of high-quality, then I can consider the anthology itself a success and my time was not wasted. I would say that "Future," to the best of my recollection, has a perfect batting average in this regard (again, a huge rarity that I enjoyed every story).
Third, most of the stories had some great catch; either it was an unexpected ending, a plot twist or a profound message. After my fourth or fifth story, I had become hooked and read each story awaiting the surprise.
Last, this anthology is somewhat historical in nature, in that the reader is given a glimpse of some of these now-great authors when they were not-so-great (the 1980's). Oftentimes, this kind of early work is refreshing and different than the work a recognized author may produce.
I hate to use a cliche, but this would be one of my "must have's" for the serious collector of sci-fi anthologies.
7 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 An anthology of surprisingly good short stories 28 mai 1999
Par Craig - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
Let me preface this review by pointing out that I am a very unlikely owner of this type of book, mainly because I don't read much science fiction. In fact I can count the number of science fiction authors I've read in the past ten years on one hand. I went through a period in high school when I read a lot of Isaac Asimov, and I read a few Larry Niven novels. But other than that, the only science fiction I've been exposed to has come from Orson Scott Card, who has become one of my favorite authors in many genres.
This is a collection of 18 stories by prominent science fiction authors in the 1980's. Before reading this book, I hadn't even heard of most of them. Honestly, I expected it to be similar to some of Isaac Asimov's anthologies, where there is usually one or two good stories and a whole lot of mediocre ones. But Card really surprised me.
Out of 18 stories, two of them rank up there with some of my favorite short stories of all time (S.C. Syke's "Rockabye Baby" and Orson Scott Card's "The Fringe" -- both of which, ironically, dealt with severely handicapped characters).
Almost all the others were also much better than I expected, especially George Martin's "Portraits of His Children", Octavia Butler's "Speech Sounds", and John Crowley's "Snow".
Unfortunately, as is the case in most anthologies, there were also two real stinkers in the book: Asimov's uninspired "Robot Dreams" and Lisa Goldstein's "Tourists".
One the whole, however, I'd heartily recommend this book one to any fan of science fiction, but also to any open-minded reader who enjoys character-driven fiction with a twist of the imaginative.
Orson Scott Card has also edited other anthologies, including FUTURE ON FIRE (1980 - a companion volume), TURNING HEARTS (1994), DRAGONS OF LIGHT (1980), and DRAGONS OF DARKNESS (1981). He also had a small role in co-editing BLACK MIST AND OTHER JAPANESE FUTURES with two other authors.
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Super cool anthology 28 juillet 2000
Par Omer Belsky - Publié sur Amazon.com
OK, this is a pretty obvious anthology. It has LOTS of awards winners, lots of famos stories by famos names, etc, etc, etc.
But it's a really great anthology, one that you can't miss.
As for Orson Scott Card's introductions, they're nice, not all too informative, and well written (of course). The degree to which you'll enjoy them depends on how much you're willing to tolerate Card's well intentioned conservatism.
But it's the stories, not those who tell them. Other than Lewis Shiner's story, I liked all of them, but I'm gonna talk about the ones that made the most impression on me: Isaac Asimov's Robot Dreams, John Varley's Press Enter, Walter Jon William's Dinosaurs, and George R. R. Martin's Portraits of His Children.
I could probably write an essey that would be longer than the story about Asimov's Robot Dream. It is a dlightful return of Susan Calvin, one I wasn't aware of. It also continues the theme Asimov has had in his last decades, of the thinning difference between the human and the Robot. It isn't as full as 'That Thou Art Mindful of Him' or 'The Bicential Man', and Susan Calvin lacks her passion for Robots, but it is fascinating anyway.
I've read John Varley's story about 5 years ago, and I thought it was one of the best short fiction pieces I've ever read. It is every bit as good in the second reading. Varley writes a tale that is even more chilling today, in the days of internet, than it was in the 80s. He proves he understands History, Computers, Medicin - but most importantly, character.
Walter Jon William's Dinosaurs was an incredible surprise. I've read some of Williams's Wild Cards stories, and I've liked them well enough, but Dinosaurs is one a whole new class. It is a story as powerful as any SF short fiction, a real classic of the field, imaginative and page turning. Williams has immidiately become and author to watch out for.
And than we come to George R. R. Martin. I've left his story for the last, and so I'll also talk about it at the end. Martin is my favorite living author (Asimov is probably my favorite all time author, though it's a close call), but every time I get to read one of his stories, I think " It can't probably be THAT good", and yet, it allways is.
Portraits of His Children isn't a Science Fiction story - it is a Dark Fantasy/Horror story, but it is no less powerful for that. It is clever, unique, and most of all, touching. It has won its Nebula deservedly.
Those were my favorites, but they don't have to be yours. Greg Bear wrote a kick ess story about micro-aliens. Octavia Butler wrote a Hugo award winning tale about a post-apocaliptical world that is a place familiar in tone to all Butler fans, myself included. C.J Cherry(sp?) wrote POTS, a unique Space Opera tale that was the first of her works I've read, but surely not the last. And Orson Scott Card finishes the book with a story about the future of Civilazation - where the world might be different, but people aren't.
This is a unique anthology. I read all of it in record tim, and enjoyed it tremendously. It truly has some of the best SF stories out there - Viva the Eighties.
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Recommended 6 juin 2014
Par Cassian Ardent - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle
It's been a long time since I read these stories. Shanidar by David Zibdell is the one that really stuck with me, and I recommend it for that piece alone. Blood Music is also widely considered one of the best short science fiction stories ever written.

People who think that we need to take the culture wars with us to the stars might enjoy the introduction. Personally I'm always glad to see actual ideas in science fiction, even though Card's are often wrong, and sometimes just silly. (No, Star Wars isn't a religion, no Christian fundamentalists aren't being oppressed, no, Clinton's affair with Lewinsky didn't sanctify him in the eyes of Democrats. These are all dumb ideas, try again.)

Anyway, Card is a gifted storyteller and he's well able to recognize quality in others. This book is a good read, whatever you think of his politics.
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