THROUGH STRANGER EYES description and bonus information


Through Stranger Eyes is a collection of my book reviews, introductions and essays on popular culture, released in the Western Hemisphere by Nimble Press and in the Eastern by Altair Australia. Included: everything from carefully measured views on J.R.R. Tolkien to that infamous, outraged rant about the Star Wars saga! From sober reflections on Jared Diamond's Collapse, and Rebecca Solnit's River of Shadows, to scientific ponderings on Feynman and Gott, along with appraisals of great authors like Brunner, Resnick, Zelazny, Clarke, Verne, and Orwell... all the way to fun riffs on the Matrix and Buffy! More than two dozen reviews and commentaries that are sure to enlighten, entertain, possibly infuriate or even make you laugh, but above all, offer some perspectives you never imagined before.

Author's Preface
Introduction - Arthur Salm

I. Dreading Tomorrow: Exploring our nightmares through literature
George Orwell and the Self-Preventing Prophecy (read here)
The Dream of Scipio, by Iain Pears
The Lord of the Rings: J.R.R. Tolkien vs The Modern Age (now sold on Barnes & Noble's nook and Amazon's kindle)
The Sheep Look Up, by John Brunner
Alas Babylon, by Pat Frank

II. Tomorrow Gets Worse: Cinematic "sci-fi" and the betrayal of confidence
The Dark Side: Star Wars, Mythology and Ingratitude (now sold on Barnes & Noble's nook and Amazon's kindle)
The Matrix: Tomorrow May Be Different (now sold on Barnes & Noble's nook and Amazon's kindle)

III. The Dour Choice: Authors who complain
The Separation, by Christopher Priest
The Penal Colony, by Richard Herley

IV. Daring to Look Higher: Authors who strive
Stand on Zanzibar, by John Brunner
Lord of Light, by Roger Zelazny
Journey to the Centre of the Earth, by Jules Verne

V. The Real World: Notions of progress, science, and danger in nonfiction
The Progress Paradox, by Gregg Easterbrook (read here)
Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, by Jared Diamond (read here)
River of Shadows: Eadweard Muybridge and the Technological Wild West, by Rebecca Solnit
The Pleasure of Finding Things Out, by Richard P. Feynman
Time Travel in Einstein's Universe, by J.Richard Gott
The Fifth Essence, by Lawrence Krauss
Fortune or Failure: Missed Opportunities ad Chance Discoveries, by Alexander Kohn
The Art of Fiction, by Ayn Rand

VI. Reviews of Memorable Tales
Beyond Thirty, by Edgar Rice Burroughs
Guilty Pleasure Can be Proud, Or Why Buffy Goes
Godspeed (or "Goodbye Warp Speed"), by Charles Sheffield
Rocket Boys, by Homer H. Hickham, Jr.
Ground Zero, by Fred Gambino
Paradise, Purgatory & Inferno, by Mike Resnick
When Heaven Fell, by William Barton

VII. Biographical Tributes
Jack Williamson, Poul Anderson, Harry Harrison, Greg Bear, Gregory Benford
Micro Tributes - Isaac Asimov, Jim Burns, Fred Gambino, Arthur C. Clarke

VIII. Through Stranger Eyes: The Odd Profession of Storytelling
How I do it... and advice to new writers (read here)
The Uplift Universe
David Brin Literary Bibliography (distilled)