News Archives - 2017
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October 16, 2017
Paratime Trouble is now in print and in both e-formats. Copies are available at the website Shop.
It's a fun romp through Piper's Paratime. I've always enjoyed the Paratime Police stories; at this point Dalla and Verkan are like old friends. I have been working on Paratime Trouble for several years. It began as a short story for my upcoming Paratime Police collection, but quickly outgrew my original outline and suddenly - voila! - it was a novel.
Paratime Trouble is a new Paratime Police novel by John F. Carr featuring Verkan Vall and Dalla Hadron. Dalla leads Verkan on a merry chase through H. Beam Piper's Paratime as Verkan - once again - attempts to save her bacon!
This time she's searching for the noted 20th Century psychic, Jeanne Dixon, who has predicted the death of John F. Kennedy and the coming of a third world war on several Europo-America belts. Unfortunately for our two intrepid Paratimers, they both end up on the Beria Belt, where the Cuban Missile Crisis is heating up into an all-out nuclear war!
In his search for Dalla, Verkan arrives in New York just in time for the bombs to hit Manhattan. He and Ranthar Jard end up traversing the subway tunnels underneath New York City as they attempt to escape rising radioactivity and hordes of fleeing survivors. Cut off from contact with Paratime Police headquarters, the two Paratimers not only face desperate survivors, but gangs of black-jacketed thugs intent on making the best out of a bad situation. On top of that, they have to find out where Dalla has gone into hiding and bring her back to First Level before the whole time-line collapses into complete chaos!
Sadly, my friend and mentor, Jerry Pournelle, passed away recently. Jerry had been in ill health for some time, having survived both brain cancer and a stroke. He died painlessly in his sleep after returning from a SF convention on September 8, 2017.
I worked closely with Jerry at his office for over 20 years as his editorial associate; together we edited over 30 short story collections, theme anthologies and two paperback magazines, "New Destinies" and "Far Frontiers".
Jerry was a larger-than-life presence and I still find it difficult to believe he's gone from this plane.
I'll never forget how Jerry generously shared his memories and letters from his former friend, H. Beam Piper, and encouraged my studies into Piper's life and works. No one was more surprised than Jerry at all the new information I uncovered about Beam, particularly about how much of his past Piper had invented and/or lied about.
When I mentioned that I was interested in writing the sequel to Lord Kalvan of Otherwhen, it was Jerry who introduced me to Roland Green, another long-time Kalvan fan. Jerry encouraged our collaboration and helped convince Ace Books that Great Kings' War was a worthwhile endeavor and had his full support.
Jerry's own Janissaries series was heavily influenced by Piper and I remember Jerry re-reading Lord Kalvan of Otherwhen for inspiration while he was writing the first draft of Janissaries. The castle scene where Pournelle introduces Tylara to Tamaerthon (Part III, Chapter One) is a direct homage to Piper's scene in Lord Kalvan of Otherwhen, where Piper introduced Rylla.
Unfortunately, Jerry's guilt and depression over Piper's suicide - which came at a time when Jerry was working for Boeing as a Senior Scientist and had the financial wherewithal to have loaned Piper whatever funds he needed to survive - made it too difficult for him to complete our collaboration on "Space Viking Returns", or do any of the other Piper projects he had promised fans. We had talked earlier this year about finishing the Space Viking sequel, and he gave me some good ideas about a new ending. There is a possibility that Baen Books, which holds the original contract, might publish it next year.
John F. Carr