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4/10
Promising but ultimately poor
20 August 2013
A weak series that presents poorly researched and over-stretched interpretations of the authors' works. As an example - it describes 'Starship Troopers' as Heinlein's most controversial work, ignoring 'Farnham's Freehold' (publishers won't reprint it) and 'Stranger in a Strange Land' (it took years to get published due to its content). It fails to acknowledge how many of the authors covered were noted for their detailed multi-work visions of the future - Heinlein's 'Future History' series, Clarke's linked stories, and the several series within Asimov's body of work.

The series also pays scant attention to lesser-known works, such as critical short stories by Heinlein, Asimov and Clarke (among others), that would - if included - better illustrate the series' claim that SF authors have been effective futurists and predictors of social and technical development. To point out another Heinlein omission, 'where's Waldo?' Hint - ask anyone who works with hazardous material enclosures.

Finally, why include Mary Shelley or George Lucas - who, despite their impact, have not produced a varied body of science fiction as authors? Instead, why not cover (for example) Theodore Sturgeon, whose work is much more predictive of both current developments and likely possible futures? Why not Harlan Ellison? Why not Spider Robinson?

I had hoped for much more...
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