The Tree of Life

The Tree of Life

C. L. Moore

Holiday / Christmas / Childrens

"The Tree of Life" is a classic science fiction novelette by Catherine L. Moore (pen name C. L. Moore). This is a great story, offering a good sampling of Moore\'s "Weird Tales" output from the 1930\'s. C. L. Moore wrote alongside her husband, Harry Kuttner. The two became acquainted after Kuttner wrote her a letter, thinking (due to her pen name) that she was a man. Going by her initials was largely a practical matter; at the time Catherine Moore was writing, there was a strong prejudice that science fiction writing should be masculine, and female authors had a very difficult time getting an audience. Most notable female science fiction authors either used initials or gender-neutral pseudonyms, for a good many years after that era. It wasn\'t until fans dug up the obituary of James Tiptree Jr.\'s mother that "he" was identified as Alice Sheldon. After all these years, "The Tree of Life" remains a great read, and excellent introduction to the works of Catherine, or C. L. Moore.
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Judgment Night

Judgment Night

C. L. Moore

Holiday / Christmas / Childrens

C.L. Moore broke new ground as one of the first female authors of science fiction, and was an undisputed pioneer of the genre. JUDGMENT NIGHT is her classic space opera, a tour-de-force from the golden age of science fiction.The Lens of Death was the most destructive weapon in the history of the cosmos. Now it will decide the fate of the Lyonese, whose galactic empire is crumbling before the assaults of a new, younger race, the H'vani. The champion of the empire and its home-world of Ericon is the daughter of the Emperor, Juille: a tall, fierce Amazon who will not see her dynasty end. But Juille could never have foreseen the twist of fate that turns her mortal enemy, the godlike H'vani warrior known as Egide, into her lover. As their races clash, the two are locked in a swirling embrace of death and lust that might end in the destruction of their peoples, the galaxy, and one another.All will be decided on Judgment Night.
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The Best of C. L. Moore

The Best of C. L. Moore

C. L. Moore

Holiday / Christmas / Childrens

The Best of C. L. Mooreedited by Lester Del ReyC. L. Moore was one of the pioneers of women's science fiction writing. In these ten stories published from 1933 to 1946 in such magazines as Weird Tales, Famous Fantastic Mysteries,and Astounding Science Fiction, Moore displays her broad interest and particular style. She wrote simple stories around potentially profound ideas. Her characters in these stories (collected in this 1975 edition) are often very much the cinematic ideals, stunning soft women, tall blonde studly men, and I wouldn't want to use any of these for sexual role models. Even so, Moore is credited with creating strong willed female characters, for a genre (dare I say pulp?) that until then was dominated by men. Still, her women often fawn over the male characters, or they are agents of men's downfall. Her imagery is full of superlatives stumbling upon piles of superlatives. It is mythical, and sometimes overtly Freudian. These stories might not be much more than historical curiosities. A couple, though, particularly the last, are well done.Shambleau is a dark and vaguely erotic horror tale of Northwest Smith, a swashbuckling (early version of Han Solo?) character on Mars meeting up with a haunting and deadly vision from interplanetary mythology.Black Thirst takes Smith into the dark underworld of the planet Venus, on a mystical journey into beauty and evil. This story doesn't work as well as the earlier adventure, as Moore seems to be stumbling over herself to find words for greater and greater beauty and evil. The language of the story suffers from this eflorescence of adjectives.The Bright Illusion is Moore taking on the aphorism "beauty is only skin deep" by sending a man to a distant planet with bizarre residents, and having him face his illusions of beauty. The story's brevity, though, brings to mind another myth: "love at first sight". Too short for her to have really made her point.In Black God's Kiss, Moore descends again into a vivid and quite Freudian subterrenean hell. Her heroine is in search for a weapon of great strength and evil, but finds a revealing aspect of herself in the end. A queasy, somewhat numbing, tale.Tryst in Time is a pretty entertaining but basically absurd tale of a young perfect male specimen who, after living a full life of adventure, sets out to travel through time. Along the way, he meets a mysterious perfect female specimen. They enchant each other, and a strange and unexplained connection is made. It doesn't make much sense, but the story is amusingly told.In Greater than Gods, a genetic scientist in the 23rd century, about to make a breakthrough in gender selection, gets the frightening opportunity of seeing the various outcomes of a decision many generations into the future. The choice before him becomes far more weighty. His solution, though, is a bit of a cop-out, and the original decision is contrived. There is an old-fashioned (or sexist) tone to the tale as well, but with some hope for a balanced resolution.Fruit of Knowledge revives the mythology of Lilith, perhaps the first bride of Adam in Eden. It is more or less a straight retelling, in detail, of a myth suggesting that Adam went out of Eden still longing for his first flawed bride.No Woman Born is a longer story that takes the form of a long debate about the wavering humanity of a brain encased in metal. A beautiful stage performer is brought back to the limelight by a latter-day Frankenstein. The story is weighted down by all the talk, though.Daemon, again, is mythical, as a mentally challenged young man relates his abandonment on an Atlantic island, where he encounters the forest sprites exiled since the advent of Christianity. The tale is interesting, but its mythology somewhat simplistic.Vintage Season, the best and last in this collection, is a tale whose tone would be familiar, years later, to fans of The Twilight Zone, (for which Moore did write one episode) as it has that same ironic moral logic. Mysterious tourists from a far-off place visit an English city to experience an historic event. Do the locals know what they're in for? This story was adapted into a television movie in 1992.At the end of this collection, in an afterword titled "Footnote to Shambleau... and Others", Moore tells a little bit about her writing process. It ends up being much more random than one might expect.
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Northwest Smith

Northwest Smith

C. L. Moore

Holiday / Christmas / Childrens

From C.L. Moore, the legendary pioneer of classic sci-fi, comes the collected adventures of the iconic space outlaw, Northwest Smith.First published in Weird Tales in the early 1930s, C.L. Moore's Northwest Smith stories, especially SHAMBLEAU, were hailed as some of the most imaginative and vivid science fiction stories ever to come out of the golden age of sci-fi. At a time when women were heavily underrepresented in the genre, C.L. Moore was among the first to gain critical and popular acclaim, drawing comparisons to contemporaries like H.P. Lovecraft and Fritz Leiber.Northwest Smith, now recognized by many as the archetypal space smuggler and gunslinger, is an adventurer in the classic sense of the word, and these thirteen stories chronicle the bizarre dangers, interstellar wonders, and titillating romances that captured the imagination of a generation.
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Black Gods and Scarlet Dreams

Black Gods and Scarlet Dreams

C. L. Moore

Holiday / Christmas / Childrens

Product DescriptionJirel of Joiry, the first of the great female warriors, the beautiful commander of the strongest fortress in the kingdom, would face any danger to defend her beloved country. She wielded her bright sword against mighty armies, the sinister magic of evil sorcerers and fearsome castles guarded by the dead, even daring to descend into Hell itself...Northwest Smith, the scarred and weathered outlaw, the legendary hero of the spaceways, forced to confront the terrible mysteries, the terrifying, mythic monsters of the universe...Jirel of Joiry and Northwest Smith are C.L. Moore's greatest creations and she used them not only to spin spellbinding tales but also to explore the mysteries of the human psyche. About the AuthorC.L. Moore was born in Indianapolis and became a leading author of science fantasies for WEIRD TALES in the 1930s. After her marriage to fellow SF writer Henry Kuttner in 1940 she concentrated on writing science fiction, usually in collaboration with her husband. She turned to screenwriting after his untimely death; her TV series included MAVERICK and 77 SUNSET STRIP.
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