This anthology of stories about the future, edited by Sylvia Engdahl, is intended for teens who don’t ordinarily read science fiction rather than for SF fans, and is not meant to be an introduction to that genre. It focuses on the timeless aspects of being human, and aims to suggest ideas about the future in a way that those who prefer real-life settings to strange, “far-out” ones will enjoy. Contributors include Sylvia Engdahl, Shirley Rousseau Murphy, Carol Farley, Rick Roberson, Robert Pierik, and Mildred Butler, all of whom are established authors of children’s or Young Adult fiction. In this expanded edition, two stories from Engdahl and Roberson’s previous anthology "Universe Ahead" are included.
“For nonfans as well as readers of science fiction.” --Booklist
“The stories are well-written, deeply thought out and a pleasure to read.” --Sunday Advocate, Baton Rouge, Louisiana
“The stories deal with tomorrow, but also with people.” --The Oregonian, Portland, Oregon
“A interesting look at what it might mean to grow up in tomorrow’s world.” --Children’s Books of the Year, Child Study Press, New York
“Roberson’s quick moving, easy style, the nicely delineated characters, and the provocative themes make ‘The Astoria Incident’ a success.” --Delap’s F & SF Review
“And then there is that superb story ‘The Beckoning Trail’ by Sylvia Engdahl and Rick Roberson in which a few of the crew members are able to comprehend the alien species which had signaled Earth. . . . Somewhat similar to 2001: A Space Odyssey, with a final act of courage and abandon, the more sensitive and accepting members of the group allow themselves to become consciously involved in the alien form of communication and thus leave ordinary earthlings far behind.” --The World of Children’s Books, University of Alberta
Sylvia Engdahl is best known as the author of highly-acclaimed Young Adult novels that are also enjoyed by adults, one of which was a Newbery Honor book and a finalist for the 2002 Book Sense Book of the Year in the Rediscovery category. However, her Children of the Star trilogy, originally written for teens, was republished as adult SF, and she is now writing only fiction for adults. The first novel of her Flame series, "Stewards of the Flame," was the winner of a bronze medal in the 2008 Independent Publisher (IPPY) Book Awards. Although all her novels take place in the distant future on hypothetical worlds and thus are categorized as science fiction, they are character-driven and are directed more to mainstream readers than to avid science fiction fans.
Engdahl is a strong advocate of space colonization and has maintained a widely-read space section of her website for many years. She has also recently issued an updated edition of her 1974 nonfiction book "The Planet-Girded Suns: The History of Human Thought About Extrasolar Worlds," which is focused on original research in primary sources of the 17th through early 20th centuries; this new edition includes an Afterword titled "Confronting the Universe in the Twenty-First Century."
She lives in Eugene, Oregon, and currently works as a freelance editor of nonfiction anthologies for high schools.read more