SFF Author: Chad Oliver


Shadows in the Sun: Oliver’s Story

Shadows in the Sun by Chad Oliver

Although it’s been almost seven years since I read Chad Oliver’s masterful fourth novel, Unearthly Neighbors (1960), such are the evocative atmosphere and compelling alien depictions in that book that I still manage to remember it quite well. And indeed, Unearthly Neighbors just might be the most convincingly realistic description of “first contact” on another world that a reader could ever hope to encounter.

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Unearthly Neighbors: A hugely satisfying novel of first contact

Unearthly Neighbors by Chad Oliver

The conventional wisdom for aspiring writers has long been “Write what you know,” a piece of advice that Cincinnati-born author Chad Oliver apparently took to heart. Greatly interested in the field of anthropology, Oliver, over the course of seven novels stretching from 1952 – ’76, as well as four collections of short stories, eventually carved out a place for himself as one of the leading lights in that curious subgenre known as anthropological science fiction. And the author was hardly a dabbler in his chosen scholarly field.

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The Shores of Another Sea: Monkey Shines

The Shores of Another Sea by Chad Oliver

1961 was something of a banner year for Cincinnati-born sci-fi author Chad Oliver. In the first part of that year, having already released four novels of anthropological science fiction, he received his Ph.D. in anthropology at UCLA, a degree that would help him become an associate professor at the University of Texas at Austin two years later, and the Chairman of the Dept. of Anthropology there in 1967. And in the latter part of 1961,

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Recent Discussion:

  1. Not sure I can be persuaded on two of these articles. When I was young book-banning meant you couldn't sell…

May 2023