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Poul Anderson

Poul Anderson Poul William Anderson (November 25, 1926 – July 31, 2001) Born in Bristol, Pennsylvania of scandinavian parents (surname seems swedish but first name for sure is danish). Shortly after his birth, his father, Anton Anderson, an engineer, moved the family to Texas, where they lived for over ten years. Following Anton Anderson's death, his widow took her children to Denmark. The family returned to the United States after the outbreak of World War II, settling eventually on a Minnesota farm.

Poul Anderson was an American science fiction author who began his career during one of the Golden Ages of the genre and continued to write and remain popular into the 21st century. Anderson also authored several works of fantasy, historical novels, and a prodigious number of short stories. He received numerous awards for his writing, including seven Hugo Awards and three Nebula Awards.

Anderson received a degree in physics from the University of Minnesota in 1948. Although he earned his baccalaureate degree with honors, Anderson made no serious attempt to work as a physicist. His first story was published in 1947 while he was still an undergraduate at the University of Minnesota, and he worked as a free-lance writer after his college graduation in 1948.

Anderson married Karen Kruse in 1953 and moved with her to the San Francisco Bay area. They had one daughter, Astrid, who is married to science fiction author Greg Bear. They made their home in Orinda, California, near Berkeley. After Poul Anderson's death, his wife donated his typewriter and desk to The Other Change of Hobbit bookstore, in Berkeley, where Poul Anderson had given readings over the years.

Anderson was the sixth President of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, taking office in 1972. He was a member of the Swordsmen and Sorcerers' Guild of America, a loose-knit group of Heroic Fantasy authors founded in the 1960s, some of whose works were anthologized in Lin Carter's Flashing Swords! anthologies. He was a founding member of the Society for Creative Anachronism. Robert A. Heinlein dedicated his 1985 novel The Cat Who Walks Through Walls to Anderson and eight of the other members of the Citizens' Advisory Council on National Space Policy.

Poul Anderson died of cancer on July 31, 2001, after a month in the hospital. Several of his novels were published posthumously.

Anderson is probably best known for adventure stories in which larger-than-life characters succeed gleefully or fail heroically. His characters were nonetheless thoughtful, often introspective, and well developed. His plot lines frequently involved the application of social and political issues in a speculative manner appropriate to the science fiction genre. He also wrote some quieter works, generally of shorter length, which appeared more often during the latter part of his career.

Much of his science fiction is thoroughly grounded in science (with the addition of unscientific but standard speculations such as faster-than-light travel). A specialty was imagining scientifically plausible non-Earthlike planets. Perhaps the best known was the planet of The Man Who Counts—Anderson adjusted its size and composition so that humans could live in the open air but flying intelligent aliens could evolve, and he explored consequences of these adjustments.

Space Opera stories

The Psychotechnic League

  • Star Ways (also known as The Peregrine) (1956)
  • The Snows of Ganymede (1958)
  • Virgin Planet (1959)
  • The Psychotechnic League (1981)
  • Cold Victory (1982)
  • Starship (1982)


Technic History?

  • The Saturn Game? (1981)

Polesotechnic League period of Nicholas van Rijn
(by internal chronology):

  • War of the Wing-Men? (original book publication heavily edited; author's preferred text and title later issued as The Man Who Counts) (1958)
  • Trader to the Stars? (1964) (Prometheus Award), collects:
  1. "Hiding Place" (1961)
  2. "Territory" (1961)
  3. "The Master Key" (1971)
  • The Trouble Twisters? (features David Falkayn, not Van Rijn) (1966), collects:
  1. "The Three-Cornered Wheel" (1963)
  2. "A Sun Invisible" (1966)
  3. "The Trouble Twisters" (also known as "Trader Team") (1965)
  4. Satan's World (1969)
  • The Earth Book of Stormgate? (many stories do not feature Van Rijn) (1978). It collects:
  1. "Wings of Victory" (1972)
  2. "The Problem of Pain" (1973)
  3. "How to be Ethnic in One Easy Lesson" (1974)
  4. "Margin of Profit" (1956)
  5. "Esau" (also known as "Birthright") (1970)
  6. "The Season of Forgiveness" (1973)
  7. The Man Who Counts (first appearance of the unedited version of War of the Wing-Men) (1958)
  8. "A Little Knowledge" (1971)
  9. "Day of Burning" (also known as "Supernova") (1967)
  10. "Lodestar" (1973)
  11. "Wingless" (also known as "Wingless on Avalon") (1973)
  12. "Rescue on Avalon" (1973)
  • Mirkheim? (1977)
  • The People of the Wind? (does not feature Falkayn or Van Rijn) (1973)

Terran Empire period of Dominic Flandry
(by internal chronology):

  • The Imperial Stars? (2000), collects:
  1. Ensign Flandry (1966)
  2. A Circus of Hells (1970)
  3. The Rebel Worlds (1969)
  4. The Day of Their Return (does not feature Flandry) (1973)
  • Agent of the Terran Empire? (1965), collects:
  1. "Tiger by the Tail" (1951)
  2. "The Warriors From Nowhere (1954)
  3. "Honorable Enemies" (1951)
  4. "Hunters of the Sky Cave" (also known as "A Handful of Stars" and We Claim These Stars) (1959)
  • Flandry of Terra? (1965), collects:
  1. "The Game of Glory" (1958)
  2. "A Message in Secret" (also known as Mayday Orbit) (1959)
  3. "The Plague of Masters" (also known as "A Plague of Masters" and Earthman, Go Home!) (1960)
  • A Knight of Ghosts and Shadows? (1974)
  • A Stone in Heaven? (1979)
  • The Game of Empire? (features a daughter of Flandry) (1985)
  • The Long Night? (features a Dark Age after Flandry's era) (1983), collects:
  1. "The Star Plunderer" (1952)
  2. "Outpost of Empire" (1967)
  3. "A Tragedy of Errors" (1967)
  4. "The Sharing of Flesh" (1968)
  5. "Starfog" (1967)
  • Let the Spacemen Beware? (also known as The Night Face, does not feature Flandry, a shorter 1960 version was known as "A Twelvemonth and a Day) (1963)

Technic Civilization Saga (Omnibus reprints of the Nicholas van Rijn and Dominic Flandry series)

  • The Van Rijn Method? (2008), collects:
  1. "The Saturn Game" (1981)
  2. "Wings of Victory" (1972)
  3. "The Problem of Pain" (1973)
  4. "Margin of Profit" (1956)
  5. "How to Be Ethnic in One Easy Lesson" (1974)
  6. "The Three-Cornered Wheel" (1963)
  7. "A Sun Invisible" (1966)
  8. "The Season of Forgiveness" (1973)
  9. "The Man Who Counts" (1958)
  10. "Esau" (also known as "Birthright") (1970)
  11. "Hiding Place" (1961)
  • David Falkayn: Star Trader? (2009), collects
  1. "Territory" (1963)
  2. "Plus Ça Change, Plus C'est La Même Chose" (1966)
  3. "The Trouble Twisters" (also known as "Trader Team") (1965)
  4. "Day of Burning" (also known as "Supernova") (1967)
  5. "The Master Key" (1964)
  6. "Satan's World" (1969)
  7. "A Little Knowledge" (1971)
  8. "Lodestar" (1973)
  • Rise of the Terran Empire? (2009), collects:
  1. Mirkheim (1977)
  2. "Wingless" (also known as "Wingless on Avalon") (1973)
  3. "Rescue on Avalon" (1973)
  4. "The Star Plunderer" (1952)
  5. "Saragasso of Lost Starships" (1951)
  6. The People of the Wind (1973)
  • Young Flandry? (2010), collects:
  1. Ensign Flandry (1966)
  2. A Circus of Hells (1970)
  3. The Rebel Worlds (1969)
  • Captain Flandry: Defender of the Terran Empire? (2010), collects:
  1. "Outpost of Empire" (1967)
  2. The Day of Their Return (1975)
  3. "Tiger by the Tail" (1951)
  4. "Honorable Enemies" (1951)
  5. "The Game of Glory" (1957)
  6. "A Message in Secret" (1959)
  • Sir Dominic Flandry: The Last Knight of Terra? (2010), collects:
  1. "The Warriors From Nowhere" (1954)
  2. "Hunters of the Sky Cave" (also known as "A Handful of Stars" and We Claim These Stars) (1959)
  3. "The Plague of Masters" (also known as "A Plague of Masters" and Earthman, Go Home!) (1960)
  4. "A Knight of Ghosts and Shadows" (1974)
  • Flandry's Legacy? (2011) collects:
  1. "A Stone in Heaven" (1979)
  2. "The Game of Empire" (features a daughter of Flandry) (1985)
  3. "A Tragedy of Errors" (1967)
  4. "The Night Face" (1978) (also known as "Let the Spacemen Beware!" (1963), a shorter 1960 version was known as "A Twelvemonth and a Day")
  5. "The Sharing of Flesh" (1968) (Hugo, Nebula)
  6. "Starfog" (1967)


Known Space




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