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The Big Yellow Book

Seeing the World from Both Oculars-- a Bananaslug's Journal

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Cecelia Holland's "Floating Worlds" is back-- available from Webscriptions
In 1966, a young (19 year old) woman published a fantastic historical novel about the Norman Conquest of England called The Firedrake. It made a big splash, since she was so young for a major novelist, and because it was published on the 900th anniversary of the Battle of Hastings.

In 1966, I was a young(er) junior high school student looking for something to read that wasn't in the children's section. A nice librarian handed me The Firedrake and said, "Here, that'll keep you most of the summer." Well, not. I finished it in less than a week, and I have been in love with the writing of Cecelia Holland ever since.

Over the years, she has written some of the finest historical fiction of the 20th century, and so far, the 21st. She has written some absolutely excellent fantasy, and she wrote in 1975 a science fiction novel, Floating Worlds, which was completely ignored by the science fiction establishment, made fun of by the SMOFs, but was a tour-de-force of writing and worldbuilding-- and it should have won the Hugo Award in 1976 or 1977, depending on when it was actually eligible for best novel-- and the competition was very stiff both years. It was that good.

David Drake is commonly identified as the "writer's writer" in science fiction. Dave and I stood in line at World Fantasy Con a few years ago to get Cecelia Holland's autograph. He told me that she was one of his favorite writers...and he said so in front of her. Cecelia was embarrassed, I think.

So it is wonderful that Floating Worlds is back in "print" as an e-book from Webscriptions. Journey with earth diplomat Paula Mendoza as she uses intelligence and guile to overcome strength and fury.

If you haven't read it, go immediately and buy and download a copy. If you have read it, read it again. I plan to. And now I don't have to go dig out my autographed first edition to do that.

And if you want to see what else Cecelia Holland has written, visit her website, Cecelia Holland's Home Page.