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9780451528988

Worlds That Weren't

Turtledove, Harry; Stirling, S. M.; Gentle, Mary; Williams, Walter Jon

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Four award-winning authors.

Four amazing alternate histories.


In this collection of novellas, four masters of alternate history turn back time, twisting the facts with four excursions into what might have been.

Bestselling author Harry Turtledove imagines a different fate for Socrates (now Sokrates); S. M. Stirling envisions life "in the wilds of a re-barbarized Texas" after asteroids strike the earth in the 19th century; Sidewise winner Mary Gentle contributes a story of love (and pigs) set in the mid-15th century, as European mercenaries prepare to sack a Gothic Carthage; and Nebula nominee Walter Jon Williams pens a tale of Nietzsche intervening in the gunfight at the O.K. Corral.

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Review:

Alternate history is the branch of speculative fiction that explores what might have happened if history had taken a different turn. The obvious changes, like the Nazis winning World War II, have filled innumerable novels. Fortunately, the anthology Worlds That Weren't avoids the obvious with its four fine new novellas from four superior authors: Harry Turtledove, S.M. Stirling, Mary Gentle, and Walter Jon Williams.

The collection opens with "The Daimon," written by Harry Turtledove, AH's best-known practitioner. In Turtledove's turning point, the ancient Greek philosopher Socrates chooses to accompany General Alkibiades to war instead of remaining in Athens, and sets Alkibiades on a triumphant, terrible new course.

Set in the British India-dominated alternate history of The Peshawar Lancers, S.M. Stirling's novella is a rousing old-fashioned adventure. "Shikari in Galveston" follows a hunting safari through a regressed American frontier that might have given even Daniel Boone pause.

A prequel to her Book of Ash tetralogy, Mary Gentle's novella "The Logistics of Carthage" concerns Christian warriors serving pagan Turks in a North Africa conquered by Visigoths instead of Vandals, and is the strongest story in Worlds That Weren't.

The collection concludes with "The Last Ride of German Freddie," in which Nebula Award winner Walter Jon Williams considers what might have happened if the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche had taken himself and his superman theories to the Wild West. --Cynthia Ward

About the Author:

Harry Turtledove—the New York Times bestselling author of numerous alternate history novels, including The Guns of the South, How Few Remain, and the Worldwar quartet—has a Ph.D. in Byzantine history. Nominated numerous times for the Nebula Award, he has won the Hugo, Sidewise, and John Esthen Cook Awards. He lives with his wife and children in California.


S. M. Stirling is the author of numerous novels, both on his own and in collaboration. A former lawyer and an amateur historian, he lives in the Southwest with his wife, Jan.

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Book Description Roc, 2003. Book Condition: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service! Summary: In this collection of original novellas, four award-winning masters of alternate history turn back time, twisting the facts with four brilliant excursions into what might have been."Confirms that alternate history is indeed riding high. All four novellas unfold with almost mathematical precision and are flawlessly executed." * Booklist. Bookseller Inventory # ABE_book_new_0451528980

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