Gene Wolfe, author of more than 30 books including classics like The Book of The New Sun, has died at the age of 87.
Wolfe was kind enough to give me a blurb for my third novel, Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town, and to make references to it in his later work, something that thrills me even to this day when I think of it. I met him on a few occasions and shared a meal or two with him and found him to be the proverbial jolly old elf, full of wit and charm and mischief, the kind of person who looked and acted exactly as you'd expect he would, based on his marvellous body of work (this is a rarity as most of us writers are mundane introverts who put all of our wildness on the page).
I'm so sad to hear that he's gone. Although he lived a long and wonderful and varied life (he invented the Pringles machine!) and left behind a staggering and brilliant literary corpus, the world was a better place with him in it. I'll miss him.
Wolfe’s fans include Michael Swanwick, Neil Gaiman, Patrick O’Leary, Ursula K. Le Guin, and many, many more, and he was praised for his exciting prose and depth of character. Asked by editor Damon Knight to name his biggest influences, he replied: “G. K. Chesterton and Marks’ [Standard] Handbook for [Mechanical] Engineers.” In 2015 The New Yorker published this profile of Wolfe by Peter Bebergal, in which the two discussed his decades-long career—it’s well worth a read.
Wolfe won the Edward E. Smith Memorial Award in 1989, the World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement in 1996, and was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2007. In 2012, The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America named him its 29th SFWA Grand Master.
Author and Grand Master Gene Wolfe, 1931-2019 [Tor.com]
Well this is pretty great! Radicalized, my book of four novellas, is one of the CBC's picks for best Canadian fiction of 2019. It's in pretty outstanding company, too, including Margaret Atwood's The Testaments.
Here’s 28 of our favorites from the last year – not all of them published in the last year, mind you – from fairy-tales to furious politics and everything in between, including the furious fairy-tale politics getting between everything. The links here include Amazon Affiliate codes; this helps us make ends meet at Boing Boing, […]
When I was younger, I would feel so badly about abandoning a book that didn’t grab me, I’d force myself to slog through it until the bitter end. Then I realized that there are only so many books I’ll have time to read in my lifetime so it’s better to make each one count. If […]
The bummers of adulthood are too many to count, but one of our least favorites is the inability to sit down and enjoy a nice bowl of cereal. When you’ve got a long commute ahead, let’s face it: That extra time it takes to pour the milk and chow down is too precious to spare. […]
Who are these people that have time for a job, social life, and actual healthy meals? With a nutrition segment on seemingly every talk show and entire networks devoted to food, it can sometimes seem like we’ve never left our mother’s house and her constant admonitions to “eat your vegetables!” And okay, she was right. […]
Every Christmas list has names you dread buying for. But hold up: Before you wave the white flag and get them yet another gift card, scroll down a few. We’ve got 15 items that run the gamut from stylish old-school lighters to cutting-edge audio tech, enough variety to please any Scrooge. And the best part? […]