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Legendary author Brian W. Aldiss in what must be the most British thing ever, passed away the day after celebrating his 92nd birthday. In a career that saw him win every literary award imaginable (save the Nobel & Booker, and I could make a pretty good argument as to why he should have won the latter), Aldiss was a one-man literary movement. He gets lumped in with SF's New Wave of the early 1960s, but the fact of the matter is that Brian was already experimenting with using the tropes of SF to comment on current social conditions. From early classics like "The Saliva Tree" to the Hellconia Trilogy two decades later, Aldiss continued to push himself as a writer. His books of non-fiction are a delight, often overlooked, they shouldn't be, Aldiss was one of those writers who could write compellingly on any subject. I'd recently turned in a two-volume set collecting as much of his best short fiction as I could fit in (I really needed five or six books to do the project justice), and I'm totally bummed that he never got to see the finished product.
A happy 82nd birthday to the Reverend R. Lionel Fanthorpe. Some of you may know him as Trevor Thorpe, Deutero Spartacus, Karl Ziegfried, Pel Torro, Oben Lerteh, or Bron Fane. Frighteningly prolific, Fanthorpe had 34 novels published in 1960-61. At the same time he was writing entire magazine content for publications such as Supernatural Stories. With an output like that the question "is any of it good?" has to arise. The answer being that while lots of his work (especially the science fiction) is laughably bad, he did produce what would amount to two or three volumes of really top-rate supernatural fiction. You probably couldn't get any publisher to take the idea of a Fanthorpe collection seriously, but it would be a pretty cool thing. Working with his daughter, Fanthorpe was as of 2015 still at it, producing new work in the science fiction genre. Good on him!