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Readnmachine
June 26th, 2008, 11:48 AM
Okay, I'm going to feel like an idiot when somebody comes up with this title, but it's driving me nuts.

There was a classic post-apocalyptic novel from sf's "golden age", sent in an age millennia after the unspecified disaster. One of the main characters had a second "head", and at the end of the novel, this head -- which had appeared to be a nonfunctional deformity -- opened its eyes (and may even have spoken).

What was it? :confused:

I was thinking it might be an Olaf Stapledon story, but it doesn't resemble any of the synopses I can find for his work. I also think it had the word "Stars" in the title.

Help!

shinyaSS
June 29th, 2008, 01:34 AM
Does The Long Afternoon of Earth by Brian Aldiss ring your bell?

Readnmachine
June 30th, 2008, 08:48 PM
No, this was way earlier than Brian Aldiss.

As I predicted, I had to give myself a dope-slap when the title swam up out of my long-term-memory. It was "A Canticle for Leibowitz" by Walter M. Miller.

Treefork
September 17th, 2008, 04:08 PM
I just read "A Canticle for Leibowitz" about a year or so ago. I don't recall a parasitic twin in the story.

-Joe

Ropie
September 18th, 2008, 07:56 AM
No, this was way earlier than Brian Aldiss.

As I predicted, I had to give myself a dope-slap when the title swam up out of my long-term-memory. It was "A Canticle for Leibowitz" by Walter M. Miller.

Actually Aldiss & Miller are/were more or less the same age and were writing concurrently. Don't recall the parasitic head in ACFL either; there's one in Wolfe's Book of the New Sun.

Omphalos
September 20th, 2008, 10:06 PM
Heinlein wrote Orphans of the Sky in the 50s. It was actually a generational starship story, but there was a societal collapse on board, and there was a mutie with two heads. Its also got "sky" in the title which you could be misremembering as "stars." Here is a review of the book:

http://www.omphalosbookreviews.com/index.php/reviews/info/54

Nepenthe13
September 21st, 2008, 06:39 AM
I just read "A Canticle for Leibowitz" about a year or so ago. I don't recall a parasitic twin in the story.

-Joe

It's been awhile since I read ACFL, and I do remember the woman with the second head. It was in the third section of the book, and when the head spoke, a priest tried to bless her, but she refused.

Omphalos
September 22nd, 2008, 10:26 PM
Oh! Sorry. I misread the thread. I thought Canticle had been ruled out by the OP. I see that it is not. There was a poor woman with a second head who wanted absolution, I think before the second war started.

Treefork
October 14th, 2008, 01:30 PM
Nepenthe,

Now that you say that it triggered my memory. I do remember that. :)

-Joe

Ropie
October 14th, 2008, 04:09 PM
I still don't recall, but she definitely wasn't a 'main character' though :confused: