Of that generation of mainstream writers who were brought to prominence by the first of Granta‘s Best Young Writers promotions, I steadily lost interest in most of them over the years. Amis fils fell away after just a couple of books, I managed four by Pat Barker before losing interest, it was pretty much the same with Julian Barnes, and the last few novels by Ian McEwan were so dull that the most recent has been sitting on my to-be-read pile for a couple of years without me ever feeling like opening it. Only William Boyd and Graham Swift have, for rather different reasons, stayed the course: I enjoy the historical sweep of Boyd’s novels at his best, and the narrow focus of Swift’s at his best. Continue reading
Angela Carter, C.P. Snow, Carter Scholz, Charles Dickens, Charles Harness, Clifford D. Simak, Connie Willis, Don DeLillo, Frank Herbert, Gregory Benford, Iain Pears, Ian McEwan, Ian Watson, John Banville, Jonathan Swift, Lucius Shepard, Michael Crichton, Nancy Kress, Pamela Zoline, Piers Anthony, Rafael Carter, Roger Zelazny, Russell McCormmach, Thomas More, William Boyd
Another of my Cognitive Mapping columns. This one first appeared in Vector 211, May-June 2000.
Now that a new Interzone is out, I thought I’d reprint the interview with Simon Ings that appeared in the last issue. This accompanied my review of Wolves which I’ll also be posting here in the next few days. Continue reading
Aldous Huxley, Arthur C Clarke, Bob Shaw, Brian Aldiss, Christopher Priest, Ed Bryant, Eric Frank Russell, Eric Rohmer, Gardner Dozois, George Orwell, George R.R. Martin, Graham Greene, Graham Swift, H.G. Wells, Ian McEwan, J.G. Ballard, Jack Dann, Jerry Pournelle, John Clute, John Fowles, John Jarrold, John Sladek, Kazuo Ishiguro, m john harrison, Martin Amis, Olaf Stapledon, Peter Ackroyd, Philip K. Dick, Rebecca West, Richard Cowper, Roz Kaveney, Thomas Huxley, Thomas M. Disch, William Boyd
I’ve written a lot about Chris Priest over the years, and most of it has ended up in What It Is We Do When We Read Science Fiction or Call And Response, but there is one major piece that hasn’t been reprinted. It is this interview I did with him in 1999, not long after the publication of The Extremes and The Dream Archipelago. The interview was first published in Vector 206, July-August 1999.
THROWING AWAY THE ORTHODOXY
A conversation about sex, innocence and science fiction
Paul Kincaid: Let’s start at the end. You have just brought out all the Dream Archipelago stories collected in one volume. Why have you gone back to that?
Christopher Priest: Well, there’s a bad reason and a good reason.
Let’s have the bad reason. Continue reading
It’s a while since I read the novel, so I couldn’t swear to it, but my impression is that the film is pretty close to the book. Certainly the basic structure is the same, the majority of book and film is devoted to Briony as a girl during the one fateful day in 1935, the middle section is split between Robbie at Dunkirk and Briony as a nurse, then there is a brief coda with Briony as an old novelist. Some of the detail is different (most noticeably, I don’t think the old Briony section is treated as an interview in the novel), and some things are passed over more briefly in the film (the scene at Lola’s wedding to Paul Marshall is, I am sure, more prominent in the novel). But essentially this is about as true an adaptation as you could hope to find. Continue reading