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The authors believe transitional science fiction writer and critic Brian Aldiss represents the evolutionary leap from the older pulp/adventure science fiction to the post new wave genre. They compare his work to that of the early mainstream literary modernists. While science fiction revives the modernist spirit and possesses its ranges, the authors maintain only Aldiss has taken advantage of that potential. His works embody both the potential and contradictions in new wave science fiction. Griffin and Wingrove emphasize the remarkable continuity of Aldiss's work. Neither rebel against the science fiction tradition nor transgressor of literary values, Aldiss is, for the authors, a model of literary survival.
Two decades after the great economic collapse the world's cities have ceased to exist and life continues only in scattered communities. Back in '43, Jake was a rich, young futures broker, immersed in the 'datascape' of the world's financial markets. He saw what was coming - and who was behind it. Forewarned, he was one of the few to escape the fall. For twenty two years, Jake Reed has lived in fear of the future and finally it is coming across the plain towards him. Chinese airships are in the skies and a strange, glacial structure has begun to dominate the horizon. Under the rule of the mighty Tsao Ch'un, a resurgent China is seeking to abolish the past and bring about world peace through rigidly enforced order. But a civil war looms, and Jake will find himself at the heart of the struggle for the future.
Wu Shih, T'ang of North America, has drawn the dragons' teeth, arresting the `Sons' and refusing to give them up to their powerful fathers until they come to heel. But in doing so he seals his own fate and feeds the flames of revolution in the process. In City Europe, Stefan Lehmann, the estranged son of the one-time Dispersionist leader, has fled to the icy Alpine wastes after the fall of DeVore's fortresses. It is from there that he returns, to set about making a name for himself in the Lowers of the City, infiltrating the cut-throat world of the Triad brotherhoods. Li Yuan has never been more content. He has come to love all three of his new wives, and celebrates the birth of his first legitimate son, Kuei Jen. In a powerful position in the Council, and with peace in the great world of levels, all seems well. Scientist, Kim Ward, has also found love - with the Marshal's daughter, Jelka Tolonen. But for both men, their happiness is to prove short-lived. The Lowers are ripe for rebellion with new groups of revolutionaries carving out small empires in those teeming warrens. And Tolonen would rather send his daughter to the far reaches of the solar system than have her marry a Clayborn. It will be seven years before they meet again; years in which Chung Kuo will rip itself apart.
Currents of unrest and tides of innovation threaten to overwhelm Chung Kuo's stability. When a lethal epidemic strikes the Seven's chief supporters, Li Yuan acts ruthlessly to wipe out the disease. But his actions incur far more fatal consequences for the rule of the Seven. While the great Council of emperors splinters into factions, Kwibesi, the detention camp for terrorists, continues to establish order. However, rebellion is brutally contained inside the camp and a growing sense of injustice stirs in one of its guards, Kao Chen, who - sent there undercover by his Master, Li Yuan - begins to question his sense of duty. The Seven are now openly divided amongst themselves, while all about them allegiances are constantly shifting as each day brings new atrocities.
Chung Kuo's once-perfect stasis is fast falling apart. The Seven's dominance is threatened by a series of terrorist attacks as the War of the Two Directions spreads and intensifies. Howard DeVore, the Seven's greatest enemy, is master-minding the atrocities. Kill DeVore and things would change markedly, but how can they hunt down a man who seems to be invulnerable? Maybe the answer lies in the frail figure of Kim Ward, a refugee from the Clay. But the young scientific genius is himself under threat, and it is only through an unexpected intermediary that he survives. And there is now another threat from within: Wang Sau-leyan, whose sole aim is to wreak vengeance on his dead father and brothers by bringing down the others of the Seven. How much longer can the Seven hold out?
As Chung Kuo's population continues to swell, the Seven are forced to make further concessions; laws must be relaxed and the House at Weimar re-opened. Change is coming, whether the Seven want it or not. As the tides of unrest unleashed by earlier wars grow, DeVore secretly allies with Li Yuan's newly-appointed general, Hans Ebert. DeVore's schemes are slowly coming to fruition, but Ebert has his own plans: to depose the Seven and control the whole of Chung Kuo. It is finally a time for Change. In the long years before the War it had seemed inconceivable to challenge the Seven. But now? Now new currents of unrest have woken in the depths of the City, darker and deeper than those expressed by the War. Currents which threaten to tear Chung Kuo apart.
The Council of Seven ruled Chung Kuo with an iron authority, their boast that they had ended Change and stopped the Great Wheel turning. But war, famine and political instability, thought to be things of the past, had returned to Chung Kuo with a vengeance. A new generation of powerful young merchants - Dispersionists - challenged the authority of the Seven, leading to what became known as 'the War-That-Wasn't-A-War' - a nasty, guerrilla form of warfare fought in the claustrophobic levels of the Cities. A brutal war without rules. A war the Seven ultimately won. But only just. And now the Seven find themselves vulnerable as the forces against them continue to grow.
Chung Kuo, the great globe-spanning City constructed of the super-plastic Ice, enjoys a brief if uneasy peace, which is threatened by the discovery of the Aristotle File. Suppressed by the Ministry, the 'Thousand Eyes', for centuries the document charts the true history of their world and will reveal the dark secret at the heart of Chung Kuo. Cold, cruel and calculating, the villainous Howard DeVore is determined to end the rule of the Seven and make way for his own bid for power. The harbinger for Change, however, is the destruction of the newly built generation starship, The New Hope, forcing the rebel factions into open war with the Seven. A war that neither side can afford to fight. A war of ice and fire that can only result in a weakening of that once-great social structure, Chung Kuo.
Japan lies under a radioactive cloud, its denizens wiped out. America has been subjugated, its inhabitants scattered. The Old World is dead, buried beneath the foundations of the new - Chung Kuo, a mile-high, globe-spanning megacity. Billions have perished and history has been rewritten with their blood. Over all of this one man reigns supreme: Tsao Ch'un - the Son of Heaven. But it takes one type of man to conquer a world, another to rule it. The Son of Heaven's brutality has alienated even his closest allies and in the depths of the great city, rebellion has been unleashed. The Great Wheel of Change turns and the fight for the future has begun.
The War For Time Continues. From the frozen tundra of 13th Century Russia to the battle of Paltava in 1709 and beyond, Otto Behr has waged an unquestioning, unending war across time for his people. But now a third unidentified power has joined the game across the ocean of time, and everything Otto holds dear could be unmade...
Christburg, 1236AD. Otto Behr, supplicant of the Teutonic Order of St. Mary's Hospital in Jerusalem, is more than just a medieval Knight. Otto is a German agent, a time-travelling operative tasked with fighting the Russians across three millennia of history. When his fellow Knight falls in battle, Otto returns to 2999AD and the German base, a bunker in 'no-space' and the last refuge in the fight against the Russians. But the harsh realities of time travel leave their mark, as evidenced by Otto's best friend who, supervising operation 'Barbarossa', attempts to change the course of World War Two and prevent the long war. But in a war across time, nothing is certain.
Part Three of The Roads to Moscow The war for time is reaching its end As the German and Russian forces seek to destroy a third, seemingly unstoppable faction, Otto Behr reluctantly finds himself at the centre of all timelines, his very existence the catalyst by which reality itself will be reset or destroyed. But for Otto, the battle to become the Master of Time has become a fight for family, love and reality itself...
The great Empire of Ice - Chung Kuo - has finally been shaken after more than two centuries of peace enforced by brutal tyranny. The Minister of the Edict has been assassinated and the seven ruling T'ang struggle to maintain Stasis, even as their mile-high, continent-spanning cities descend into chaos. But the assassination was orchestrated by men close to the ruling powers; powerful merchants - Dispersionists - intent on Change, whose betrayal will lead them into the world-shattering War of the Two Directions.
There is only the war. Otto Behr is a German agent, fighting his Russian counterparts across three millennia, manipulating history for moments in time that can change everything. Only the remnants of two great nations stand and for Otto, the war is life itself, the last hope for his people. But in a world where realities shift and memory is never constant, nothing is certain, least of all the chance of a future with his Russian love...
Part Two of The Roads to Moscow The War For Time Continues. From the frozen tundra of 13th Century Russia to the battle of Paltava in 1709 and beyond, Otto Behr has waged an unquestioning, unending war across time for his people. But now a third unidentified power has joined the game across the ocean of time, and everything Otto holds dear could be unmade...
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