✼ The Starry Rift Epub ✿ Author James Tiptree Jr. – Higo2cam.info

The Starry Rift These Are The Heroes Of The Starry Rift, A Dark River Of Night That Flows Between The Arms Of Our Galaxy A Headstrong Teenaged Runaway Who Makes First Contact With A Strange Alien Race A Young Officer On A Deep Space Salvage Mission Who Discovers An Exact Double Of A Woman He Thought He D Lost The Crew Of An Exploration Ship Who Must Plead For The Human Race To Avert An Interstellar War One can see why Tiptree is such an acclaimed writer but, although I can see that, I can also see why I have not except very occasionally to look at a particular story, really returned to Tiptree s work since first reading them round about the 70s 80s Which is about what I like, rather than what I admire, in a writer. After the extinction of humanity, aliens visiting a galactic library study three tales from humanity s history This is a fix up novel, that is, short stories wrapped up by a framing device to turn it into a novel The stories are all set in the same universe, and sometimes reference the same locations and aliens, but the time is different enough that the same technological rules don t apply although they re always at a spacefaring level.Tiptree herself James Tiptree Jr being a pseudonym for After the extinction of humanity, aliens visiting a galactic library study three tales from humanity s history This is a fix up novel, that is, short stories wrapped up by a framing device to turn it into a novel The stories are all set in the same universe, and sometimes reference the same locations and aliens, but the time is different enough that the same technological rules don t apply although they re always at a spacefaring level.Tiptree herself James Tiptree Jr being a pseudonym for Alice Sheldon has been an author I ve enjoyed several short stories of in the past, but at the same time, I felt like I haven t read enough Moreover, she had quite a fascinating life And, since we were coming up on what would have been her 100th birthday, when I saw this collection in a used book bin, I figured I d give it a try It s not her best work, unfortunately It showcases some of the same characteristics she s known for, explorations of gender and sexuality, power, and death, but none have the power of the few classic works, and, to a degree, they seemlike average pulp stories with, occasionally, a little extra.Since there s only three, it s easy enough to discuss them individually, and then I ll discuss some of the things that apply to all of them.In The Only Neat Thing To Do a teenage girl who wants nothingto explore space is given a spacecraft by her parents, for local use, and promptly runs away to uncharted territories There she encounters an alien being unknown to her and uncovers a potential threat to local humanity This was the best story of the bunch, all told The alien, although maybe requiring a bit of suspension of disbelief, was a lot of fun to imagine, and the growing horror of what might potentially happen was well played, as well as the tragedy surrounding the whole situation, that it s not because of any particular maliciousness, but that like physics, biology can also be unforgiving Good Night, Sweet Hearts, tells the story of a man who is out of time due to a large amount of traveling under cryogenic suspension As part of a series of coincidences, he encounters the great lost love of his college years, now much older and changed in many ways beyond that and later, encounters the descendant of a clone of hers that s the age that he knew her Also, there are space pirates The weakest of the bunch, I get the idea that the author was playing with a choice between a second chance with a person you have history with that you still hold a torch for, but isn t how you remember her, or one who looks virtually the same but doesn t remember you , and I like how it was eventually dealt with, but too much about it seemed like a false choice and, perhaps oddly, it didn t seem to give enough agency or respect to the women themselves The fact that the clone was rescued from being a slave and endured some horrific things kind of makes her not much like the woman he left behind, except in looks, which makes him shallow for even considering it And, all in all, the story just didn t have a lot of what I was interested in, it ranalong the lines of a pulp style adventure The third story, Collision , ranks somewhere in between The alien race was actually quite well conceived, with an interesting life cycle involving three genders, and the conflict between them and the humans made sense and was resolvedor less in a satisfying way but there was just a bizarre subplot involving people of any race, in certain regions of space, thinking that they should look like the primary inhabitants of that area that was just frankly, too silly for me The worst part was, it had only the smallest consequences on the plot and could easily have been removed It felt like an interesting idea the author wanted to explore, but didn t have a proper story, so she just shoved it into this one, and made it much worse in the process But, I still have to give her credit for the alien race itself As for the framing story, it s not substantial enough to really enjoy, but there is one quality that takes it from being a neutral factor in the book to being a minor negative too often, the author uses the alien s reactions to comment on her own writing, in a way that feels smarmy even were she criticizing them, but there s some praise too Overall, there are some trends, mostly, unfortunately, to the negative Not in a I hate this book sense, but simply that I might have enjoyed itif they were improved Some, you can t really blame Tiptree for that is, the technology in these seems very dated Particularly, storage capacities and the fact that tapes are regularly referred to, not as archaic language but as physical things that need to get respooled, threaded, and such, giving the impression that in the far future humanity has spread throughout the galaxy and discovered faster than light travel but still uses magnetic tape based cassettes Of course, any fiction of a certain time period is going to have big gaps like this, and you sort of have to forgive them, but they can still have their effect on your enjoyment Somewhatdistancing is some occasional language abnormalities I m not sure if these are meant to indicate linguistic drift, were particular dialogue quirks of the era or location Tiptree wrote, or some combination her use of the word minim to denote a specific but undefined time period certainly seems to be some element of world building, but it felt out of place , but it often felt not quite right, not quite natural Some of the dialogue had the clipped rhythm you sometimes hear in military or pilot speak, where words that are not strictly necessary, but make your sentences feelnatural, get omitted It s not a huge problem, but it made it harder to get into than I d hoped I didn t dislike it, I just thought it was okay Despite the weak review, it s not turning me off Alice Sheldon s work in general, it just might not be the best place for someone to get a deeper exposure to her The Starry Rift by James Tiptree Jr is one of only two collections of short stories readily available as ebooks I admit I chose to buy it first partly because it was only 3 and partly because it was shorter and I couldeasily fit it in before getting to Letters to Tiptree.The Starry Rift is set up with a framing narrative about two students seeking library materials for class The books the librarian gives them form the three stories contained within this collection The stories are all s The Starry Rift by James Tiptree Jr is one of only two collections of short stories readily available as ebooks I admit I chose to buy it first partly because it was only 3 and partly because it was shorter and I couldeasily fit it in before getting to Letters to Tiptree.The Starry Rift is set up with a framing narrative about two students seeking library materials for class The books the librarian gives them form the three stories contained within this collection The stories are all set around the same general region of space Federation Base 900, the frontier outpost on the edge of the Rift Hence the title The Rift is an area of space devoid of stars, apparently not quite in between spiral arms of the Milky Way, but something like that.I have to say, the science in this book was a bit off Some of it was quaint as in, not up to date, as would be expected of an older book like this and some of it did not entirely make sense I was a bit confused about the relativistic and also normal time passing effects of space travel which didn t seem to be addressed in the first story but were explainedin the third On the other hand, the scientific points in these stories were generally not dwelt upon, decreasing the likelihood of an egregious error None of the stories were about new inventions they were all, first and foremost, about characters in unusual situations But aliens who have FTL comms but not pretty fundamental chemistry Come on Anyway, as per usual I have made comments on the individual stories which you can find below In general, I would recommend this collection as a good example of classic SF While the science may not have stood the test of time, the concepts explored in the stories mostly have.The Only Neat Thing to Do A fourteen year old girl with rich parents gets a space coupe from her parents, tricks it out with extra fuel tanks and goes exploring to the edge of Human explored space It started out as a fun adventure, if a little unlikely since fourteen year olds can t have cars, and took some interesting and then emotional turns I really wasn t expecting the sort of ending it had There were a few weird science related moments but they weren t dwelled on by the narrative, so I found them easier to skip over than in most books Why do so many books use bad science as a lynchpin As a first introduction to Tiptree, I found it a solid story Coming back after finishing the collection, this was my favourite of the three Good Night, Sweethearts A space salvager repairman portable refueller comes across a stranded ship that s out of fuel It transpires that it contains someone from his past A past that, almost interestingly it could have been explored further , he doesn t remember due to what I gathered to be PTSD type treatment he received after being in a war Some external action provides excitement and the climax and the main character is left with some difficult decisions I was disappointed with how much these objectified the female characters I also found his final choice baffling, though perhaps less so, given some of what I ve recently learnt about the author s life.Collision This is the story of first well, second contact between the human Federation and a large alien empire Told from points of view on both sides, we learn a lot about the culture and unusual biology of the aliens before the human protagonists come across them The biological procedure of reproduction was very unusual honestly it struck me as a bit inefficient for all that the aliens resemble kangaroos in superficial ways I liked that after explaining the mechanics of it, the notion turned out to be relevant to the plot in an unexpected way On the human side of things, the story starts off being told through long delayed communications capsules We listen to the story along with the people at base, knowing only that the explorers survive long enough to send the capsule, but nit whether there ll be another capsule Although this is actually a relatively cheery story in the end, there is still some death, notably of the only two human women although they didn t die because they were women It s still less bleak than the first story in this collection.4 5 starsReadreviews on my blog This is not top shelf Tiptree, though there are some occasional felicities There are three stories in this collection each set in the Starry Rift, a section of the galaxy where there is an absence of stars all framed as library materials given to aliens seeking knowledge of humans This conceit that aliens would learn about humans from reading implied there may have been perceptual sensory difficulties with an image based medium, such as movies Additionally, it suggested and never overtly deni This is not top shelf Tiptree, though there are some occasional felicities There are three stories in this collection each set in the Starry Rift, a section of the galaxy where there is an absence of stars all framed as library materials given to aliens seeking knowledge of humans This conceit that aliens would learn about humans from reading implied there may have been perceptual sensory difficulties with an image based medium, such as movies Additionally, it suggested and never overtly denied the possibility that humans had become extinct The aliens mention how the reading evoked emotion and conjured images, which is a pretty marvelous coincidence that their brains could process, as humans mysteriously do, this same aspect of language, using arbitrary symbols that compose arbitrary words so that in combination they make the brain connect those symbols with ragtag bits of random memory to create a new, almost lived, cognitive experience The first and best story initially had me thinking the whole collection was following a Young Adult agenda, but the young protagonist simply mirrors the other young principal, an alien entity that exists as a benign brain parasite This was an intriguing premise and the quixotically altruistic relation between parasite and host was the story s highlight The second story involved a self isolating former astronaut whose many time delaying FTL flights have removed him from his natal contemporaries by almost a century, though he remains only 30 years old In his occupation as remote mobile refuel jockey, he encounters his first love, a galactically famous star of visual and holographic fictions who s maintained her youthful appearance through numerous surgeries, though she is over a century old The daughter of one of her clones becomes involved, and the fuel jockey is torn between preserved first love or youthful clone of first love He ends up opting for neither, making plans instead to rebuild scavenge lost space ships.The final, longest story entails a first contact mission that might explode into a galactic war if the intentions of the humans are not properly perceived as benign There is some good interesting atmospherics in this story, but it ends up being a creaky bit of machinery for generating a phew, that was a close call ending After the sophistication of alien encounter depicted by Stanislaw Lem in Fiasco, it s difficult to approach any sort of space opera without champing down on the skepticism This is not Tiptree s best work, and it would be a shame if a reader had only read this and not delved into her earlier,challenging andunsettling work Something was lost in Tiptree s writing, and she never recovered from the unmasking of her identity as a woman For nearly a decade, she d been writing as a reclusive man and garnering attention and critical hosannas for fiction that exhibited a subliminal otherness, a frisson generated by a subterfuge that enabled her to keep in flux in potentia her own awareness of identity The Starry Rift deals with areas where little exists between the galactic arms There are three stories about the rift from different times These are given to two young Comenors wanting to learn about Humans from the early days of the Federation.The first tale is from a time when humans had little FTL capabilities It follows Coati Cass, a young lady who was given a little space coupe on her 16th birthday She tricks it out with additional fuel tanks with the idea of exploring space beyond the The Starry Rift deals with areas where little exists between the galactic arms There are three stories about the rift from different times These are given to two young Comenors wanting to learn about Humans from the early days of the Federation.The first tale is from a time when humans had little FTL capabilities It follows Coati Cass, a young lady who was given a little space coupe on her 16th birthday She tricks it out with additional fuel tanks with the idea of exploring space beyond the northern borders of the rift She leaves FedBase 900 She encounters a message pipe from another starship and a small, gold speck falls onto her arm The speck turns out to be an intelligent life that enters her body and travels to her brain She goes into cold sleep to continue her journey and the life form uses that time to explore her brain When Coati comes out of her cold sleep, the entity uses Coati s voice to communicate with her She learns that her new companion is an Eea named Syllobene During their journey together, Coati learns about the Eea and Syl and the eventual results of Syl s growing in Coati s brain Coati is able to record a message pipe to send to FedBase 900 and warn them about the Eea.In the second tale, FTL communication did not exist and FTL travel was only for emergencies Raven does salvage work and spends much time in cold sleep on trips to his salvage destinations He responds to an out of fuel call One of the people on board the ship he comes to help is a silver gilt haired girl named Illyera She goes by Illya and is a well known celebrity Raven learns there isto Illya He sees that over many years she has had extensive cosmetic surgery and eventually realizes that they had been romantically involved years before Because of his decades in cold sleep, he has aged very little compared to Illya Raven provides them with the fuel they need and warns them about the route they choose to take They ignore his warning and soon encounter another ship which connects to theirs Raven is able to connect to them and disable the hostiles He discovers a young version of Illya, her grandclone named Illaine Raven is still in love with Illya and now finds that Illaine is interested in him In the end he is faced with a difficult decision.The third tale describes a human encounter with the Ziellor They are fur covered with a large tail they use for hopping They have an extra pair of smaller arms and have only one eye As the humans get closer to Ziellor space some of the crew have impressions that they should have tails and extra arms while knowing nothing about the Ziellor The Ziellor have had horrible encounters with what they call Zhumans Zhumans are Black World humans that have waged war with the Ziellor A young female Ziellor named Zella has learned some human language and eventually becomes a translator The human ship, Rift Runner eventually lands on Ziellor but have taken steps to disguise themselves to looklike the Ziellor Eventually things fall apart and the humans flee Ziellor pursued by a Ziellor warship They grow low on fuel and cannot outrun the warship However, the warship is also low on fuel but has called for a supply ship It comes down to the two ship captains to come to an understanding and prevent a war between the two worlds.This is an interesting story in three parts and was very enjoyable I often comb the Tiptree award nominees for book recommendations, but I ve never read a Tiptree book until now I liked it Three stories, linked together loosely I loved the first one so much The other two were meh , and I also loved the far future vignettes in between each story I ll definitely look forTiptree, but she can be hard to come by The structure of the book was interesting three stories set in the same place but at different times with different characters All tied together by a separate brief narrative that served as an introduction and bridged between the stories Entertaining concepts and plots Some of the characters seemed rather flat but not to the point of being completely unlikable. Contains the novellas Collision, Good Night, Sweethearts, and The Only Neat Thing To Do.http speculiction.blogspot.com 2013Following is the review which can also be found at the link above, and which I feel is excellent The biography of James Tiptree Jr., known as Alice Sheldon in reality, makes for interesting reading Having had anything but a predictable life, amongst her many talents was writing science fiction Her personal life troubled, its emotional tension leaked into her fiction Contains the novellas Collision, Good Night, Sweethearts, and The Only Neat Thing To Do.http speculiction.blogspot.com 2013Following is the review which can also be found at the link above, and which I feel is excellent The biography of James Tiptree Jr., known as Alice Sheldon in reality, makes for interesting reading Having had anything but a predictable life, amongst her many talents was writing science fiction Her personal life troubled, its emotional tension leaked into her fiction, giving it a certain salience, and likewise dark undertones One of her last novellas, The Only Neat Thing to Do may be the most autobiographical of them all.Coati Cass is a plucky, intelligent young girl with dreams of space She knows all the star stations, the models of ship that traverse the universe, and the rules of space flight Saving up her money, she decides to put her knowledge to use and fulfill her dreams by renting a ship for a few weeks trip into the great unknown Things go smoothly at first she spends the last of her money on fuel and food, gets permission to lift off after chartering a course, and heads off to the starry beyond At the first way station, however, things take a turn as innocent as it may be Intercepting a message from a pair of spacers thought lost, she decides to follow up on their request for help Little does she know what else was stowed in the message container.Opening in an adventurous mode a la Jack Vance and closing on the bleakest of notes a la Hemingway, The Only Neat Thing to Do is a true arc of story Hugging a proper 180 degree curve, the narrative seems to parallel Tiptree Jr s personal life inways than one From the innocence of youth to the uncertainty of responsibility in the wide world err, universe, the struggles of a person coming to terms with themselves and the reality they are a part of are symbolized in what Coati finds inside the message, or better yet, what finds Coati inside the message From the hopes and dreams of youth to sexuality and the psychological weight of family expectation, Tiptree Jr covers a lot of ground in the short, heartbreaking novella In the end, The Only Neat Thing to Do is a poignant tale of a young girl who turns herself loose on the world only to meet a tragic end By parallel, it is also the story of an author in turmoil, seeking escape from demons past and present The main plot device similar to Jack Vance s Nopalgarth or Dan Simmon s Carrion Comfort, readers will find the underlying content all Tiptree Jr s Symbolism ripe and the narrative flowing, the story haunts beyond the grave Three short stories, I only read the first two Not very interesting or engaging.


About the Author: James Tiptree Jr.

James Tiptree, Jr was born Alice Bradley in Chicago in 1915 Her mother was the writer Mary Hastings Bradley her father, Herbert, was a lawyer and explorer Throughout her childhood she travelled with her parents, mostly to Africa, but also to India and Southeast Asia Her early work was as an artist and art critic During World War II she enlisted in the Army and became the first American female photointelligence officer In Germany after the war, she met and married her commanding officer, Huntington D Sheldon In the early 1950s, both Sheldons joined the then new CIA he made it his career, but she resigned in 1955, went back to college, and earned a Ph.D in experimental psychology.At about this same time, Alli Sheldon started writing science fiction She wrote four stories and sent them off to four different science fiction magazines She did not want to publish under her real name, because of her CIA and academic ties, and she intended to use a new pseudonym for each group of stories until some sold They started selling immediately, and only the first pseudonym Tiptree from a jar of jelly, James because she felt editors would bereceptive to a male writer, and Jr for fun was needed A second pseudonym, Raccoona Sheldon, came along later, so she could have a female persona Tiptree quickly became one of the most respected writers in the field, winning the Hugo Award for The Girl Who was Plugged In and Houston, Houston, Do You Read , and the Nebula Award for Love is the Plan, the Plan is Death and Houston, Houston Raccoona won the Nebula for The Screwfly Solution, and Tiptree won the World Fantasy Award for the collection Tales from the Quintana Roo.The Tiptree fiction reflects Alli Sheldon s interests and concerns throughout her life the alien among us a role she portrayed in her childhood travels , the health of the planet, the quality of perception, the role of women, love, death, and humanity s place in a vast, cold universe An award in Tiptree s name has celebrated science fiction that expands and explores gender roles for ten years now.Alice Sheldon died in 1987 by her own hand Writing in her first book about the suicide of Hart Crane, she said succinctly Poets extrapolate Julie Phillips wrote her biography,James Tiptree, Jr The Double Life of Alice B Sheldon Here is a link to a site which now awards Science Fiction authors and their books under Alice s pen name for literature to represent gender issues within the field of writing.


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