R.I.P. Brian Aldiss.
Not read Earthworks but I love Greybeard (seemingly ripped off for Children of Men although P.D. James indignantly denied it) and Hothouse. Got Barefoot in the Head but not got round to it yet - the scenario has always intrigued: population dosed with psychotropic weapons, leading to hallucinatory breakdown of British society, in which a prophet emerges leading a flock of delirious believers. Also got but not got round to his well-regarded history of s.f. Billion Year Spree (later updated as Trillion Year Spree). People swear by the Helliconia trilogy.
It's also a very good name, Brian Aldiss - a proper British science fiction author's name. Sort of flat and sensible but not too ordinary.
Yes, and it's almost-but-not-really an anagram of Algis Budrys.I recently got hold of an excellent book of interviews with SF authors, including our Brian, which I will do a post on soonish. Apparently he locked the interviewer in a cupboard for having given him a bad review.
That is a fabulous cover as well.
Thanks for your comments folks. Despite having just scanned and posted it, I've actually not read 'Earthworks' yet either -- it's next in line though in my recent (belated) quest to work through Aldiss's books.Thus far, 'Non-Stop', 'Hothouse', 'Greybeard' and 'Frankenstein Unbound' are all excellent, and make a good case I think for Aldiss to be considered on the level of seminal greatness as Dick, Ballard, Whyndham, Kneale etc, even though he never quite achieved the same "cool" rep.I agree on the name too. Perfect for this kind of low-key British SF. Not quite as striking and futuristic-sounding as Asimov or Zelazny, but... well I've never heard of anyone else named 'Aldiss', put it that way.