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Great Science-Fiction & Fantasy Works

  Science-fiction & fantasy literature: a critical list with discussions.

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Edward Whittemore

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This is a brief discussion of Edward Whittemore and, of course, of some speculative-fiction books by Whittemore.

This discussion and list does not necessarily include every book by Whittemore: it includes only those books that I both know and like. Just as with the author list itself, omission of a particular item may mean I didn’t think highly enough of the omitted item, or it may simply mean that I have not yet sufficient familiarity with it. (In a very few cases, I have listed some books merely on the strength of my opinion of the author: all such books are clearly marked below, as throughout these lists, with a hash mark (#) before the title so you know what’s what.)

I don’t pretend that this discussion is a deep analysis. My intent is no more than to give you a rough idea of what kinds of tales Whittemore tells, how those tales are usually told, and what makes them and Whittemore worthy; in sum, to help you rank Edward Whittemore (and the works by Whittemore listed here) on your personal literary “to do” list.

A Few Words About Edward Whittemore

Regrettably, I have not yet had an opportunity to write an essay on this author, but the “Other Resources” section below will lead you to some information about the “Notable Books” listed farther down this page.

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Other Edward Whittemore Resources

Edward Whittemore Resources on the Web

At times, life and the universe conspire to enrage the most phlegmatic. Whittemore is a classic example of those writers whose works attract little notice when it might mean something to them, then become cult objects after their death; it makes one want to rage at the heavens. Nowadays—now that he’s safely dead, having died in the apparently required poverty—there is a wealth of appreciation of the man and his work available on the web. (Lord Dunsany had something pithy to say about that sort of thing.)

The key Whittemore site is Jerusalem Dreaming. In fact, so comprehensive is that site that it would be supererogatory for me to here do anything other than direct you to it, or, in this context, to its page listing and linking to Articles and Press Reviews concerning Whittemore. There is also a useful Whittemore page at the Modern Novel web site, with links to yet other Whittemore resources.

I found just a few other items not (at a glance) on that Jerusalem Dreaming page: a review of Sinai Tapesty at David Kennedy’s book-log; Edward Whittemore, a brief tribute at the {feuilleton} blog; and The Jerusalem Quartet, another note by Jeff VanderMeer at “Curiosities” on the Fantasy & Science Fiction site. Another favorable review of the “Jerusalem Quartet” appears on the Atomic Junk site. And of course there’s a Whittemore page at The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction. There’s a bit more, but you wouldn’t get much from any of the rest of it.

As an example of posthumous notice, there is the Whittemore obituary in The New York Times.

Note that there is also a Whittemore forum, accessible through the Jerusalem Dreaming site.

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Edward Whittemore Resources in Print

I could find none.

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Notable Science-Fiction and Fantasy Books by Edward Whittemore ****

(These books are on the borderline between mainstream and fantasy, but I judge them to have sufficient qualities of unreality to be justifed in these lists.)

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