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The Three Hoarsemen Discuss NOVA by Samuel R. Delany

It is an allegorical tale of interstellar adventure, a quest that is part Moby Dick and part revolutionary act. It is about confluence, archetypes, obsession, seeking the future, and the creative process itself. It is the story that marked the transition from Delany’s more straightforward genre explorations to the maturation of his career when he returned to the field with Dhalgren. It is the book that critic Algis Budrys said “…right now, as of this book…not as of some future book or some accumulated body of work, [Delany] is the best science-fiction writer in the world, at a time when competition for that status is intense.”
In this installment of The Three Hoarsemen John E. O. Stevens, Fred Kiesche and Jeff Patterson discuss Nova by Samuel R. Delany, including their first encounter with the book, how subsequent readings have altered their views, and the continuing strength of the story after four and a half decades.

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6 Comments on The Three Hoarsemen Discuss NOVA by Samuel R. Delany

  1. Phew! //wipes brow// Hope everyone enjoys it as much as we enjoyed recording it.

  2. I assume next week you’ll be discussing Through the Valley of the Nest of Spiders.

    • Well, since I never finished that book, no :-).

      • And… “…next week…”? //shudders// We’re too creaky to operate that fast!

        Subjects for future episodes are in flux (like the Force), but will include Gene Wolfe, John Brunner, others. Our holiday “wish lists” (gifts from loyal fans cheerfully accepted), and our usual mix of random walks and chance occasions.

        • Or you could possibly explain Dhalgren, but even William Gibson, who wrote an introduction for it, couldn’t.

  3. Given when it was written in comparison to NOVA, I wonder if Zelazny borrowed the tarot for Trump decks after seeing Delany use it in NOVA>

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