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Odd John: A Story Between Jest and Earnest (The Garland Library of Science Fiction) Hardcover – Jun 1975


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Hardcover, Jun 1975
£107.33
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.


Product details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis (Jun. 1975)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0824014375
  • ISBN-13: 978-0824014377
  • Product Dimensions: 17.5 x 13.2 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Book Description

The book that gave the world the term Homo superior. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From the Back Cover

Introduction by Adam Roberts

John Wainwright is a freak, a human mutation with an extraordinary intelligence which is both awesome and frightening to behold. Ordinary humans are mere playthings to him. And Odd John has a plan - to create a new order on Earth, a new supernormal species. But the world is not ready for such a change . . .

Olaf Stapledon (1886-1950)

Educated at Balliol College, Oxford, and Liverpool University, Olaf Stapledon worked for a shipping office in Liverpool and Port Said before returning to lecture at Liverpool University. His books included the SF classics Last and First Men and Star Maker.

'Stapledon is the great classical example . . . the ultimate SF writer' Brian Aldiss

'Olaf Stapledon was one of the most creative thinkers of our time' Greg Bear

978 0 575 07224 4

£7.99

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Allen Baird on 6 Aug. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Scientific experiments gone awry, cosmic accidents, super aliens from Krypton or Valhalla - these seems to be the standard superhero formulae. But what about genetic or evolutionary mutation? "Yea, that's called 'The X-Men', you knuckle- head." OK fair enough. But still. Their superpowers remain for the most part of the garden-variety comic book type, since that's where they come from. It takes a novel to see further. A novel like this.

John Wainwright doesn't look like a superhero. He has bulging eyes, a big brow and the features of a foetus. People who look at him are both repulsed and fascinated. He uses his looks as a test of character, other people's character that is. He is beyond testing.

John Wainwright doesn't act like a superhero. He kills a policeman among others. He has affairs with both genders and with his own mother (probably). He bullies others to learn about them and himself, like a scientist conducting experiments with rats. He isn't weighed down with an overwhelming sense of responsibility because of his great gifts. His most usual response is to laugh.

John Wainwright doesn't think like a superhero. He is a maths prodigy, an inventor, he uses his brain. He philosophises; he cares about 'spirituality'. He does not care about homo sapiens, either to rule or destroy us. He is 'homo superior' and only cares about his own kind.

John Wainwright doesn't have powers like a superhero. Oh yes, there's the telepathy, the telekinesis, and assorted psi abilities. But before all this, he has total control over his own psychological and physiological responses. He reads books like other kids drink milkshakes. He can learn a foreign language in two weeks. He composes music that no-one else can appreciate...
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By gabeso on 11 Oct. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Olaf Stapledon is one of the great Sci-Fi imaginations - a highly original and creative writer - all of his books are well worth reading.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mr. D. Sheedy on 26 Feb. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The other reviews describe this book very well, so I won't go over the same points.

I am working my way through the SF Masterworks collection and this is up there with the best of them.
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