Damon Knight - Humpty Dumpty: An Oval - Orion Publishing Group

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Humpty Dumpty: An Oval

By Damon Knight

  • E-Book
  • £P.O.R.

Humpty Dumpty is a breakthrough work for this acknowledged master of the fantastic, an intriguing, entertaining, and immensely appealing novel of a man trying to make sense of a world gone mad. The tale begins when Wellington Stout wakes in an Italian hospital, uncertain how or why he came to be there. Gradually he learns that he was shot in the head in a Milan restaurant the night before his stepdaughter's wedding, perhaps because of a mysterious packet his brother asked him to deliver. The doctors tell him he is fortunate to be alive, but Stout has his doubts. For the bullet that has entered his skull has also opened cracks in the fabric of reality, and, as in the old nursery rhyme, no force on Earth or in Heaven can put it back together again. Soon Stout is hearing voices foretelling his doom, encountering antediluvian cabals of dentists, extraterrestrial shoe salesmen, gargantuan rodents, seductive adolescent sibyls, and giant craters opening across the face of North America, and traveling on an uncertain odyssey through a distorted landscape made of the fragments of his own life and memory.

Biographical Notes

Damon Knight (1922 - 2002)
Damon Francis Knight was born in Oregon in 1922. He is regarded as one of the most important figures in modern science fiction, having made significant contributions to the field as an author, editor and critic. Knight co-founded the Milford Writers' Conference, the influential Clarion Workshop and the Science Fiction Writers of America, serving as its first president from 1965-67. Around this time he also made his reputation as one of the field's foremost anthologists. Beginning with reprint collections, in 1966 he launched the influential Orbit series of original anthologies. Starting with Orbit 1, the series would continue for over a decade, concluding in 1980 with Orbit 21. Orbit was the longest running and most influential anthology series in SF up to that point, showcasing such important authors as Gene Wolfe, R.A. Lafferty and Knight's third wife, Kate Wilhelm. A master of short fiction, Damon Knight is best known in wider circles as the author of 'To Serve Mankind', which was adapted for The Twilight Zone and later spoofed in a Hallowe'en episode of The Simpsons. He was granted the SFWA's Grand Master Award in 1995, and in 2002, SFWA renamed it the Damon Knight Grand Master Award in his honour. He died in 2002.

For more information see www.sf-encyclopedia.com/entry/knight_damon

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9780575111356
  • Publication date: 29 Aug 2013
  • Page count:
  • Imprint: Gateway
Gateway

Damon Knight SF Gateway Omnibus

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

Author, editor, critic, fan: few people have had such a great and varied impact on modern SF as Damon Knight. From membership of seminal SF group the Futurians, through years of incisive reviews and criticism, to editorship of the influential Orbit series of anthologies, Knight bestrode 20th-century SF like a colossus. After his death in 2002, the SFWA GRAND MASTER AWARD was renamed in his honour. The four volumes contained in this omnibus represent the best of his acclaimed short fiction - FAR OUR, IN DEEP, OFF CENTRE and TURNING ON - including his retro HUGO-winning TO SERVE MAN, surely the only SF story to inspire episodes of THE TWILIGHT ZONE and THE SIMPSONS!

Gateway

Turning Points

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

Culled from the most imaginative and provocative minds of the pas thirty years, these pieces demonstrate the vitality and diversity, the excitement and commitment of the writers who helped make science fiction what it is today.

Gateway

Better than One

Kate Wilhelm, Damon Knight
Authors:
Kate Wilhelm, Damon Knight
Gateway

In Search of Wonder

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

In the decade from 1951 to 1960, Damon Knight was the outstanding critic of science fiction books. Knight's reviews were not mere statements of his personal preferences - his skillful essays analysed the books and told why they were good or bad, to the edification of readers, the delight of good writers, and the embarrassment of bad ones. Believing that his work deserved more permanence than could be found in its original magazine publication, Advent brought out the famous first edition of In Search of Wonder in 1956. In this book, Knight wove his essays into chapters on many aspects of science fiction and fantasy, ranging from "Classics" to "Chuckleheads". A second book was planned, but other activities prevented Knight from finishing it, however he was persuaded to integrate most of the new material into this second edition, which is more than fifty percent longer than the first.

Gateway

The Futurians

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

The Futurian Society was founded in 1938 by thirteen science fiction fans; it never numbered more than twenty, including wives, girl friends and hangers-on; yet out of this small group came seven of the most famous names in science fiction: Isaac Asimov, James Blish, Damon Knight, Cyril Kornbluth, Judith Merril, Frederik Pohl and Donald A. Wollheim.Brilliant, eccentric and poor, the Futurians invented their own subculture, with its communal dwellings, its folklore, songs and games, even its own mock religion. In later years many of them became influential novelists, editors, anthologists, literary agents and publishers.The author has interviewed ten of the surviving Futurians and has traced down the widow of one member whose tragic fate was unknown until now. Drawing on correspondence, unpublished manuscripts, and amateur publications (including a collection of Futurian wall newspapers which had wound up in Australia), he has written a fascinating narrative of the early days of the Futurians, the feuds and lawsuits that divided them, and their later careers.

Gateway

A Reasonable World

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

Plague...or paradise? 2005 A.D. Six years have passed since the alien Symbionts invaded Sea Venture, Earth's largest ocean habitat. Now, despite the government's best attempts at quarantine, the Symbionts have spread all over the planet, infecting the bodies of both humans and animals - and slowly, subtly forcing mankind in new directions. Once possessed by the Symbionts, men and women become smarter, wiser - or else they die. War and violence are punished by instant execution from within. A new era dawns, but there are those who would turn back the millennium, who will stop at nothing to prevent...A Reasonable World.

Gateway

Beyond the Barrier

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight
Gateway

The Observers

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

McNulty's Disease has escaped the Sea Venture and is now epidemic on land. The disease kills only a few of its victims...but no one knows what long-term effects it has on those who survive. For the public's safety, the U.S. government sets up a giant internment camp on the old CV herself, and attempts to find as many survivors as possible to keep safely on board the ship. Fortunately, Julie Prescott has a most resourceful and clever husband (he used to be a high-priced hired killer) who doesn't want his wife locked up forever. So he sets himself up against the entire government bureaucracy - with remarkable results.

Gateway

Mind Switch

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

Time Switch at the Zoo.One day Martin Naumchik, reporter for Paris Soir, visited the Berlin Zoo. He was standing outside the spacious cage housing the newly-acquired Brecht Biped, Fritz, when the world seemed to lurch.Then he was no longer outside the cage looking in, but inside looking out. He was no longer Martin Naumchik. He was Fritz, the Biped, that strange celestial animal from a world eighteen light-years away.At the same time, Fritz, who had lived almost all his life in Hamburg Zoo, also felt the lurching motion. And found himself standing outside his cage in the body of Martin Naumchik, looking at the frantic Biped inside, who was beating with both hands on the glass.

Gateway

Double Meaning

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight
Gateway

World without Children and The Earth Quarter

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight
Gateway

The Man in the Tree

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight
Gateway

CV

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight
Gateway

Why Do Birds

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

It's the early 21st century. Ed Stone says he's been in suspended animation since the 1930s. He says he was kidnapped by aliens. He says they sent him forth on a mission: to convince the nations of the world to build massive vault, a mile on each side, in which humanity's billions will lie in suspension and survive the impending destruction of the Earth.Ed Stone says all these things, and the strangest part is that people believe him - ordinary people and powerful people alike. So begins Why Do Birds, a classically science-fictional novel of ideas and quite possibly Damon Knight's most haunting work, a terrifying tale of deceit and human folly.

Gateway

Far Out

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight
Gateway

In Deep

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight
Gateway

Off Centre

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

The room was quiet; the man in front of the mirror was the only living things there, and he was too horrified to utter a sound.In the mirror, five faces stared back at him: one young and ruddy, which was his own, and four that did not belong in that place at all, for they were wrinkled, malevolent, small as crabapples and blue as smoke.So begins Damon Knight's 'Be My Guest', a story of the human race possessed by things that were - well, not exactly demons . . . but not exactly not demons, either.It's just one of the unpredictably imaginative tales in this fascinating collection by a modern master of science fiction.

Gateway

Turning On

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

Brilliant invention, a rich sense of humour, an equal facility for describing ideas and technologies - these are the ingredients of Knight's extraordinary talent as an SF writer. This collection of stories takes the reader from the death bed of the last man on earth to the unlikely demise of a vegetable vampire - and proves that Knight was at the top of his form.

Gateway

Rule Golden

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight
Gateway

The World and Thorinn

Damon Knight
Authors:
Damon Knight

Thorinn went down. He had little choice, since his own father had hurled him into a well.Yet the world was shifting in those days, and Thorinn was to go deeper than his father had ever dreamed; destined to discover strange worlds within worlds, to meet beasts undreamed of, and to discover that which few of us are permitted to know:His Own True Name.