The International Fantasy Award was an annual literary award for the best science fiction or fantasy book and, in 1951-1953, the best non-fiction book of interest to science fiction and fantasy readers. The IFA was given by an international panel of prominent fans and professionals in 1951-1955 and then again in 1957.
The 15th World Science Fiction Convention, also known as Loncon I, was held 6–9 September 1957 at the King's Court Hotel in London, England. It was the first Worldcon held outside North America.The chairman was Ted Carnell. The guest of honor was John W. Campbell, Jr., the editor of Astounding magazine. Total attendance was 268. Events included a "fancy dress ball" on the evening of Friday, September 6.A Mirror for Observers
A Mirror for Observers is a science fiction novel by American writer Edgar Pangborn, winner of the International Fantasy Award in 1955. The plot concerns a philosophical conflict between settlers from Mars who attempt to influence human development.Chesley Bonestell
Chesley Knight Bonestell, Jr. (January 1, 1888 – June 11, 1986) was an American painter, designer and illustrator. His paintings were a major influence on science fiction art and illustration, and he helped inspire the American space program. An pioneering creator of astronomical art, along with the French astronomer-artist Lucien Rudaux, Bonestell was dubbed the "Father of Modern Space art".Clifford D. Simak
Clifford Donald Simak (; August 3, 1904 – April 25, 1988) was an American science fiction writer. He won three Hugo Awards and one Nebula Award. The Science Fiction Writers of America made him its third SFWA Grand Master, and the Horror Writers Association made him one of three inaugural winners of the Bram Stoker Award for Lifetime Achievement.Earth Abides
Earth Abides is a 1949 post-apocalyptic science fiction novel by American writer George R. Stewart. It tells the story of the fall of civilization from deadly disease and its rebirth. The story was set in the United States in the 1940s in Berkeley, California and told by a character, Isherwood Williams, who emerges from isolation in the mountains to find almost everyone dead.
Earth Abides won the inaugural International Fantasy Award in 1951. It was included in Locus Magazine's list of best All Time Science Fiction in 1987 and 1998 and was a nominee to be entered into the Prometheus Hall of Fame. In November 1950, it was adapted for the CBS radio program Escape as a two-part drama starring John Dehner.Edgar Pangborn
Edgar Pangborn (February 25, 1909 – February 1, 1976) was an American writer of mystery, historical, and science fiction.Fancies and Goodnights
Fancies and Goodnights is a collection of fantasies and murder stories by John Collier, first published by Doubleday Books in hardcover in 1951. A paperback edition followed from Bantam Books in 1953, and it has been repeatedly reprinted over more than five decades, most recently in the New York Review Books Classics line, with an introduction by Ray Bradbury. A truncated British edition, omitting roughly one-quarter of the stories, was published under the title Of Demons and Darkness.The collection is viewed as a classic of its genre. It won the International Fantasy Award for fiction in 1952, as well as an Edgar Award for "outstanding contribution to the mystery short story." It compiles most of the stories from Collier's prior collections as well as seventeen previously uncollected stories, several original to the volume. Collier reportedly rewrote many of his early stories prior to book publication.George Pavlou
George Pavlou is a London-based British horror, science fiction and thriller film director. Pavlou directed three feature films of which two were based on material from British horror writer Clive Barker.George R. Stewart
George Rippey Stewart (May 31, 1895 – August 22, 1980) was an American historian, toponymist, novelist, and a professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley. His 1959 book, Pickett's Charge, a detailed history of the final attack at Gettysburg, was called "essential for an understanding of the Battle of Gettysburg". His 1949 post-apocalyptic novel Earth Abides won the first International Fantasy Award in 1951.John Collier (fiction writer)
John Henry Noyes Collier (3 May 1901 – 6 April 1980) was a British-born author and screenwriter best known for his short stories, many of which appeared in The New Yorker from the 1930s to the 1950s. Most were collected in The John Collier Reader (Knopf, 1972); earlier collections include a 1951 volume, the famous Fancies and Goodnights, which won the International Fantasy Award and remains in print. Individual stories are frequently anthologized in fantasy collections. John Collier's writing has been praised by authors such as Anthony Burgess, Ray Bradbury, Roald Dahl, Neil Gaiman, Michael Chabon, Wyndham Lewis, and Paul Theroux. He appears to have given few interviews in his life; those include conversations with biographer Betty Richardson, Tom Milne, and Max Wilk.L. Sprague de Camp
Lyon Sprague de Camp (; 27 November 1907 – 6 November 2000), better known as L. Sprague de Camp, was an American writer of science fiction, fantasy and non-fiction. In a career spanning 60 years, he wrote over 100 books, including novels and works of non-fiction, including biographies of other fantasy authors. He was a major figure in science fiction in the 1930s and 1940s.Lands Beyond
Lands Beyond is a study of geographical myths by L. Sprague de Camp and Willy Ley, first published in hardcover by Rinehart in 1952, and reissued by Barnes & Noble in 1993. It has been translated into French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian. It was the winner of the 1953 International Fantasy Award for nonfiction.Mission of Gravity
Mission of Gravity is a science fiction novel by American writer Hal Clement. The novel was serialized in Astounding Science Fiction magazine in April–July 1953. Its first hardcover book publication was in 1954, and it was first published as a paperback book in 1958. Along with the novel itself, many editions (and most recent editions) of the book also include "Whirligig World", an essay by Clement on creating the planet Mesklin that was first published in the June 1953 Astounding.
Clement published three sequels to Mission of Gravity: a 1970 novel called Star Light, a 1973 short story called "Lecture Demonstration", and a 2000 short story, "Under". Mission of Gravity was nominated for a "Retro Hugo" Award for the year 1954.More Than Human
More Than Human is a 1953 science fiction novel by American writer Theodore Sturgeon. It is a revision and expansion of his previously published novella Baby is Three, which is bracketed by two additional parts written for the novel ("The Fabulous Idiot" and "Morality").
It won the 1954 International Fantasy Award, which was also given to works in science fiction. It was additionally nominated in 2004 for a "Retro Hugo" award for the year 1954. Science fiction critic and editor David Pringle included it in his book Science Fiction: The 100 Best Novels.
Simon & Schuster published a graphic novel version of More Than Human in 1978, titled Heavy Metal Presents Theodore Sturgeon's More Than Human. It was illustrated by Alex Niño and scripted by Doug Moench.Player Piano (novel)
Player Piano is the first novel of American writer Kurt Vonnegut, published in 1952. It depicts a dystopia of automation, describing the negative impact it can have on quality of life. The story takes place in a near-future society that is almost totally mechanized, eliminating the need for human laborers. The widespread mechanization creates conflict between the wealthy upper class, the engineers and managers, who keep society running, and the lower class, whose skills and purpose in society have been replaced by machines. The book uses irony and sentimentality, which were to become hallmarks developed further in Vonnegut's later works.The Day of the Triffids
The Day of the Triffids is a 1951 post-apocalyptic novel by the English science fiction author John Wyndham. After most people in the world are blinded by an apparent meteor shower, an aggressive species of plant starts killing people. Although Wyndham had already published other novels using other pen name combinations drawn from his real name, this was the first novel published as "John Wyndham". It established him as an important writer and remains his best-known novel.
The story has been made into the 1962 feature film of the same name, three radio drama series (in 1957, 1968 and 2008), and two TV series (in 1981 and 2009). It was nominated for the International Fantasy Award in 1952, and in 2003 the novel was listed on the BBC's survey The Big Read.The Illustrated Man
The Illustrated Man is a 1951 collection of eighteen science fiction short stories by American writer Ray Bradbury. A recurring theme throughout the eighteen stories is the conflict of the cold mechanics of technology and the psychology of people. It was nominated for the International Fantasy Award in 1952.The unrelated stories are tied together by the frame device of "the Illustrated Man", a vagrant former member of a carnival freak show with an extensively tattooed body whom the unnamed narrator meets. The man's tattoos, allegedly created by a time-traveling woman, are individually animated and each tell a different tale. All but one of the stories had been published previously elsewhere, although Bradbury revised some of the texts for the book's publication.
The book was made into the 1969 The Illustrated Man, starring Rod Steiger and Claire Bloom. It presented adaptations of the stories "The Veldt", "The Long Rain" and "The Last Night of the World".
A number of the stories, including "The Veldt", "The Fox and the Forest" (as "To the Future"), "Marionettes, Inc.", and "Zero Hour" were dramatized for the 1955-57 radio series X Minus One. "The Veldt", "The Concrete Mixer", "The Long Rain", "Zero Hour", and "Marionettes Inc." were adapted for the TV series The Ray Bradbury Theater.The Lord of the Rings
The Lord of the Rings is an epic high fantasy novel written by English author and scholar J. R. R. Tolkien. The story began as a sequel to Tolkien's 1937 fantasy novel The Hobbit, but eventually developed into a much larger work. Written in stages between 1937 and 1949, The Lord of the Rings is one of the best-selling novels ever written, with over 150 million copies sold.The title of the novel refers to the story's main antagonist, the Dark Lord Sauron, who had in an earlier age created the One Ring to rule the other Rings of Power as the ultimate weapon in his campaign to conquer and rule all of Middle-earth. From quiet beginnings in the Shire, a hobbit land not unlike the English countryside, the story ranges across Middle-earth, following the course of the War of the Ring through the eyes of its characters, not only the hobbits Frodo Baggins, Samwise "Sam" Gamgee, Meriadoc "Merry" Brandybuck and Peregrin "Pippin" Took, but also the hobbits' chief allies and travelling companions: the Men, Aragorn, a Ranger of the North, and Boromir, a Captain of Gondor; Gimli, a Dwarf warrior; Legolas Greenleaf, an Elven prince; and Gandalf, a wizard.
The work was initially intended by Tolkien to be one volume of a two-volume set, the other to be The Silmarillion, but this idea was dismissed by his publisher. For economic reasons, The Lord of the Rings was published in three volumes over the course of a year from 29 July 1954 to 20 October 1955. The three volumes were titled The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and The Return of the King. Structurally, the novel is divided internally into six books, two per volume, with several appendices of background material included at the end. Some editions combine the entire work into a single volume. The Lord of the Rings has since been reprinted numerous times and translated into 38 languages.
Tolkien's work has been the subject of extensive analysis of its themes and origins. Although a major work in itself, the story was only the last movement of a larger epic Tolkien had worked on since 1917, in a process he described as mythopoeia. Influences on this earlier work, and on the story of The Lord of the Rings, include philology, mythology, religion and the author's distaste for the effects of industrialization, as well as earlier fantasy works and Tolkien's experiences in World War I. The Lord of the Rings in its turn is considered to have had a great effect on modern fantasy; the impact of Tolkien's works is such that the use of the words "Tolkienian" and "Tolkienesque" have been recorded in the Oxford English Dictionary.The enduring popularity of The Lord of the Rings has led to numerous references in popular culture, the founding of many societies by fans of Tolkien's works, and the publication of many books about Tolkien and his works. The Lord of the Rings has inspired, and continues to inspire, artwork, music, films and television, video games, board games, and subsequent literature. Award-winning adaptations of The Lord of the Rings have been made for radio, theatre, and film. In 2003, it was named Britain's best novel of all time in the BBC's The Big Read.Theodore Sturgeon
Theodore Sturgeon (; born Edward Hamilton Waldo, February 26, 1918 – May 8, 1985) was an American writer, primarily of fantasy, science fiction and horror. He was also a critic. He wrote approximately 400 reviews and more than 200 stories.Sturgeon's science fiction novel More Than Human (1953) won the 1954 International Fantasy Award (for SF and fantasy) as the year's best novel and the Science Fiction Writers of America ranked "Baby is Three" number five among the "Greatest Science Fiction Novellas of All Time" to 1964. Ranked by votes for all of their pre-1965 novellas, Sturgeon was second among authors, behind Robert Heinlein.
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame inducted Sturgeon in 2000, its fifth class of two dead and two living writers.