John Varley's "Irontown Blues" - noir doggy science fiction from one of the field's all-time greats

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John Varley is one of my all-time favorite authors, whose “Eight Worlds” stories and novels have been strung out over decades, weaving together critical takes on Heinlein and other “golden age” writers with mindfuckingly great technological/philosophical speculation, genderbending, genre-smashing prose, and some of the most likable, standout characters in the field.


I’ll buy it if I can get it on kindle in Australia. Last time I checked, Varley was only available in the dead tree version here. I would love a sort-of sequel to Steel Beach. I still re-read that book from time to time.

Wasn’t there a Lt Bach in Bagatelle?

It’s there, along with a majority (all) his work:

In Germany, yes. I am pretty sure I saw it pop up when I was on holiday in France two years ago. I should have bought a bunch of books then.

I went to , searched it and it brought me to .de by itself :confused:

Oh I get it. You misread kindle in Australia as kindle in Austria.

We get that a lot here.

Are you two doing one of those Austria/Australia mixups again?

.at == Mountains, Vienna and stuff
.au == Kangaroos, Sydney and stuff


Oops -.-


Varley’s Steel Beach has THE BEST OPENING LINE EVAH!!!:

“In the future, the penis will be obsolete!” said the salesman.



Varley delivers the goods, all right.

His first novel, The Ophiuchi Hotline, is a non-stop parade of brilliant ideas: I re-read it about once a year.


Daily Legal Bulletin, published by the Intersystem Office of Criminal Control Research. Aquarius 14, 568 O.E.

Case of Lilo-Alexandr-Calypso vs. The People of Luna.

(Legal Summary For immediate release)

The State charges that Lilo-Alexandr-Calypso, during the period of time 1/3/556 to 12/18/567, did willfully and knowingly conduct experiments upon human genetic material with the intent of artificially inducing mutations in said material. The State further alleges that defendant did produce human blastocysts and embryos reflecting potential structures atypical of the permitted spectrum of Humanity, in violation of the Unified Code of the Eight Worlds Confederation, Article Three (Crimes Against Humanity) Section Seven (Genetic Crimes). The State asks the penalty of permanent death.


Postscript: Varley was cyberpunk before the term cyberpunk was coined.



Whoo. Flashback to McAuley’s Gene Wars story. Or maybe a callback?

Golden Globe is the Shakespearean one, right?

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You had me at ‘recreational transgenic leprosy’.

(Edited to rectify mispeling.)


And goes on to discuss proprietary interfaces for “advanced” sex where you have to carry an adapter for situations where your partner doesn’t have the right hardware.

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