Death: January 26, 2000.
Comments: A.E. van Vogt was a Canadian science fiction author most famous for his novel Slan and his short story The Weapon Shop. Like many authors of his era, van Vogt got his start with a story published in Astounding, and then went on to publish dozens more. He was a pioneer in the creation of the "fix-up" novel stitched together out of previously published pieces of short fiction, and many of his novels, such as The War Against the Rull, were constructed in this way.
Despite being an SFWA Grand Master, van Vogt is something of a polarizing figure in the genre fiction field. Both Damon Knight and Darrell Schweitzer have leveled heavy criticism at van Vogt's writing, calling it juvenile, poorly plotted, and clumsy. Knight was also critical of van Vogt's apparent fondness for dictatorships. On the other hand, Philip K. Dick regarded van Vogt as the greatest influence on his own writing and Harlan Ellison campaigned vigorously for van Vogt's recognition as an SFWA Grand Master. No matter which side one takes, van Vogt's influence on science fiction, for good or ill, is undeniable.
My reviews of A.E. van Vogt's books:
Other books by A.E. van Vogt that I have read but not reviewed:
Short fiction by A.E. van Vogt appearing in works that I have reviewed:
The Weapon Shop found in The Science Fiction Hall of Fame: Volume I, 1929-1964
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