Burn

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Pub Date 01 Jun 2018 | Archive Date 29 May 2018

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Description

Nebula Award Winner
Hugo Award Nominee

Burn is James Patrick Kelly at his best, and there’s nothing better.”
—Connie Willis, author of Doomsday Book

The tiny planet Morobe’s Pea has been sold and renamed Walden. The new owner has some interesting ideas. Voluntary simplicity will rule in the Transcendent State; Walden is destined to become a paradise covered in lush new forests.

But even believers find temptations in the black markets; non-believers are willing to defend their ideals with fire. Walden’s only hope may lie with a third option: a very unlikely alien intervention.

In Burn, James Patrick Kelly (Think Like a Dinosaur) delivers an innovative, entertaining, and morally-complex vision of the perils of idealism.


Nebula Award Winner
Hugo Award Nominee

Burn is James Patrick Kelly at his best, and there’s nothing better.”
—Connie Willis, author of Doomsday Book

The tiny planet Morobe’s Pea has...


A Note From the Publisher

About the Author: James Patrick Kelly is the author of five novels and several collections of short stories for which he has won the Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and Italia awards. A popular author of short stories, he is a four-time winner of the Asimov Reader’s Poll. He has edited a number of anthologies with John Kessel, described by the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction as “each surveying with balance and care a potentially disputed territory within the field.” He has taught writing in the NEA-funded Arts in Education program and served as the Chair of the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts.

About the Author: James Patrick Kelly is the author of five novels and several collections of short stories for which he has won the Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and Italia awards. A popular author of short...


Advance Praise

“A powerful cocktail of the strange and the hauntingly familiar”
—Cory Doctorow

“James Patrick Kelly is one of the masters of science fiction. He imagines futures both high-tech and human, both dizzyingly complicated and determinedly simple, and then sends us to Walden, where simplicity is anything but, and even Henry David Thoreau begins to look disturbingly different. Burn is inventive, moving, and involving. It’s James Patrick Kelly at his best, and there’s nothing better.”
—Connie Willis

“With his immaculate prose and perfect structural tricks, Kelly’s book offers a richly satisfying blend of adventure and philosophy.”
SciFi.com (Grade: A)

“Hugo-winner Kelly (‘Think like a Dinosaur’) mixes hard-edged extrapolation with messy human issues in this thought-provoking SF novel. The inhabitants of Transcendent State, a colony of ‘true humans,’ have rejected advanced technology for lives of voluntary simplicity on a world renamed Walden. They are threatened by the pukpuk, survivors of a previous settlement who seek to stop plans to cover the planet with healthy, dense forest by setting fires in the wilderness. Now even Walden’s citizens are beginning to question their charter’s tenets of simplicity, secretly trading produce and handmade goods for pukpuk tech through a thriving black market. The spark that will ignite Walden’s final conflict comes from one of its own, firefighter Prosper ‘Spur’ Leung, when he unwittingly contacts the High Gregory of Kenning, ruler of a distant world. ‘I make luck,’ the High Gregory says, turning Spur’s commitment to Walden’s (and Thoreau’s) philosophy of self-reliance and the primacy of nature upside down. Kelly’s many-layered story pivots on a set of paradoxes, asking questions about the difference between innocence and willful ignorance, responsibility and balance, and the true essence of nature.”
Publishers Weekly

“Bored while recovering from burns received in the line of duty, fruit farmer turned fireman Spur decides to contact similarly named people throughout the Thousand Worlds. He reaches a boy on a throne, who says he makes luck and becomes very interested in Spur’s world, the small planet Walden, designated a simple-living utopia by the wealthy man who bought it from its mother planet. A few days later, homeward bound from the hospital, a hover stops the train to take Spur aboard. On the aircraft are the boy, a gaggle of other children from other worlds, and their superintendent. The kids are all extraordinary and, as it happens, intent on resolving the warfare on Walden, which consists of the pre-utopian inhabitants setting forest fires to resist the forestation of all the land the Waldenites don’t farm. Besides its fireman hero (a reversal of Montag in Fahrenheit 451) and its would-be-utopian setting, the warm humanity and rural sympathies of this affectionate, winsome short novel will make many recall Ray Bradbury at his best.”
Booklist


“A powerful cocktail of the strange and the hauntingly familiar”
—Cory Doctorow

“James Patrick Kelly is one of the masters of science fiction. He imagines futures both high-tech and human...


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ISBN 9781892391278
PRICE $19.95 (USD)

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