The much acclaimed and prophetic classic by Orwell has stood the test of time. Is it perfect? Absolutely not.
Does it have the flawless symmetry of Austen’s novels? Not really.
Could Orwell delineate the characters like Dostoevsky? Barely.
Does it have the devilish sense of humor so conspicuous of The Animal Firm? No.
Is the plot original? Far from it (check We by Yevgeny Zamyatin).
Does it have a touch of Salman Rushdie’s poetic story telling? Actually, it is more of an essay.
Orwell’s 1984 should be read for reasons of its own. In spite of its flaws, it makes a terrifying future too real for a work of fiction. It could be a Nazi Germany, a Fascist Italy, a so-called socialistic Russia, Napoleon’s despotic France or a combination of all of them. How common are “Big Brothers” in the world as it exists today? “Nothing was your own except the few cubic centimetres inside your skull.” — does this tone seem familiar across socio-economic-political levels? This is not a review of the book, so let the reader be the judge of how imposing Orwell view of the human future is.
“It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” – what follows would possibly change the way you look at any ideology or propaganda and wonder, like Wordsworth said, “What man has made of man.”
Download ebook 1984 by George Orwell (Audiobook) – Click here
Planet Stories was a popular SF magazine primarily aimed at young pulp readers. Total 71 issues of the magazine were published between 1939 and 1955. Some of the top science fiction writers of the time including Leigh Brackett, Philip K. Dick, Isaac Asimov, and Ray Bradbury wrote regularly for Planet Stories.
The content focussed on interplanetary adventures and sword & sorcery stories. Quite a few stories from Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles were first published on Planet Stories. The “Letters to the Editor” column was called “The Vizigraph”. It was a pretty colourful page with interesting letters from readers as well as established writers like Robert Silverberg.
Planet Stories featured some of the most amazing SF artwork of the time. Enigmatic spaceships, scantily clad damsels in distress, deadly villains, alien princesses in alien worlds made up a perfect escapist landscape. Acclaimed artists like Frank Paul, Hannes Bok, Kelly Freas, and Alexander Leydenfrost worked on Planet Stories’ interior artwork and cover.
With a final issue in the summer of 1955, Planet Stories closed down due to serious recession in the pulp market.
Many scholars translated the works of Jules Verne into English, but the single most prolific effort came from I.O. Evans. His translations, known as Fitzroy Edition of Jules Verne, comprised of sixty eight volumes and were highly successful commercially. It can be argued that modern annotated translations of Verne are more scholarly, but the Herculean effort of Evans is truly admirable.
Fitzroy Editions published by Ace had some great cover art. Here are a few samples: