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  1. #1
    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
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    RIP Harry Harrison

    From Locus Magazine:

    SFWA Grand Master Harry Harrison, 87, died August 15, 2012 in Crowborough, Uckfield, East Sussex.

    Harrison is best known for his SF crime series the Stainless Steel Rat, featuring con man and thief Slippery Jim diGriz. Other important works include his novel of overpopulation Make Room! Make Room! (1966), the basis of famous SF film Soylent Green (1973); the Deathworld series; the Eden series; and A Transatlantic Tunnel, Hurrah! (1972).

    Henry Maxwell Dempsey was born March 12, 1925 in Stamford CT; his father changed his last name to Harrison soon after the birth. Harrison attended art schools in New York, and worked as a commercial artist before turning to fiction, selling first story “Rock Diver” in 1951. He went on to become an astonishingly prolific author and editor, producing scores of novels, stories, and anthologies over the next six decades.

    Harrison helped shape the SF field in the ’60s and ’70s through his collaborations with Brian Aldiss, including SF criticism magazine SF Horizons, which ran for two issues in 1965-65, and their influential Best SF anthology series, which ran from 1968-1975.

    Harrison was inducted into the SF Hall of Fame in 2004, and received the SFWA Grand Master Award in 2009. He was predeceased by wife Joan Merkler in 2002 (married 1954) and is survived by their two children.
    Harry's Stainless Steel Rat series was a joy to me in my late teens, but his edited anthologies, often with Brian Aldiss, opened up a world of SF to me. And then there's Make Room! Make Room!. It was his short stories I think I loved most of all...

    Met him a couple of times, at WorldCon in Glasgow in 2005 and at an Alt.Fiction event a couple of years ago. Both times he was funny, animated and full of great stories.

    I will miss him. I'm sure others will too.

    Mark
    Mark

  2. #2
    Registered User Pennarin's Avatar
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    Tonight I'll read The Lifeship, by Dickson & Harrison, the only thing I have by him.

    Unfortunetly I knew nothing of Harrison's life or accomplishments.

  3. #3
    Registered User JimF's Avatar
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    One of my favorites. This saddens my day considerably.

  4. #4
    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
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    Think this obituary from Christopher Priest in the Guardian UK newspaper is pretty damn good.

    Harrison was an extremely popular figure in the SF world, renowned for being amiable, outspoken and endlessly amusing. His quickfire, machine-gun delivery of words was a delight to hear, and a reward to unravel: he was funny and self-aware, he enjoyed reporting the follies of others, he distrusted generals, prime ministers and tax officials with sardonic and cruel wit, and above all he made plain his acute intelligence and astonishing range of moral, ethical and literary sensibilities.
    Mark
    Mark

  5. #5
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    While I read a few Stainless Steel novels, they never impressed me that much (probably read them too late as at 10-12 they should have been great adventures), but the Eden and the Hammer and the Cross series are still big time favorites

  6. #6
    Live Long & Suffer psikeyhackr's Avatar
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    RIJ

    Reincarnate In Joy

    2/3rds of the Deathworld Trilogy is in the public domain.

    I think the second book has the most to say. They are both in audiobook form also.

    Deathworld I by Harry Harrison
    http://www.magick7.com/1/MoonlightSt...1/117/1966.htm
    http://librivox.org/deathworld-by-harry-harrison/

    Deathworld II (The Ethical Engineer) by Harry Harrison
    http://www.magick7.com/1/MoonlightSt...2/012/2027.htm
    http://librivox.org/the-ethical-engi...arry-harrison/

    psik

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