Discussion Board

Topic: Books and Ideas that Inspired City at the End of Time.

From: Robert Micallef
Location: Farmington Hills Michigan
Date: 06/30/2008

I absolutely loved this novel, it has haunted me for days. I'm hoping you return this universe sometime.

I was wondering if beyond the wonderful homage to the far future histories of William Hope Hodgson, Olaf Stapledon, and Sir Arthur Clarke were there any other fictions, philosophies and or theologies that inspired the writing of City at the End of Time?



Re: Books and Ideas that Inspired City at the End of Time.

From: Greg Bear
Date: 07/01/2008

Ah, the first reader response! Did you read a review copy? U.S. edition will be on sale August 6 or thereabouts, in time for WorldCon. And keep an eye on this site for the web sites premiere, in just a few days!

Add in Jorge Luis Borges, George MacDonald, H.G. Wells, J. D. Bernal, James Branch Cabell, Michael Moorcock, J.G. Ballard, and Brian Aldiss, and you have a pretty good bibliography of influences. We'll likely be posting images of some of the key books on our websites.

Re: Books and Ideas that Inspired City at the End of Time.

From: Stuart
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Date: 09/24/2008


Thanks for the pleasure you have given me reading your SF books; they are always a good meaty read and are all exceptionally well written. I own most of them and have read most of these more than once.

I am also a fan of William Hope Hodgeson. You say above that you plan to print some images of (based on?) the key books that influenced The City, you have probably already visited www.thenightland.co.uk. If so I hope you have seen the wonderful artwork of someone called only "SMS" on this website. These are probably the best black and white SF/fantasy illustrations I have seen:


I haven't read very far yet, but the image of the city surrounded by Chaos and failing reality generators, at the end of time reminds me strongly of "the last Great Redoubt" in "The Night Land"

I have just finished Darwins's Radio for the 2nd time. Thanks for a great book that taught me so much basic biology and genetics. The research you have done to make the two Darwin books what they are is first rate. "Vitals" likewise!

Keep them coming!


Re: Books and Ideas that Inspired City at the End of Time.

From: Greg Bear
Date: 09/25/2008

Thanks, Stuart! Steve Fabian is a fine artist, and Hodgson and I share the privilege of having him as an illustrator. Steve illustrated my first novel, HEGIRA, way back in 1979. These paintings are wonderful, and I believe they're from Donald Grant's edition of THE DREAM OF X, a shorter edit of THE NIGHT LAND used by Hodgson to secure copyright in the U.S.

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