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Samuel Youd, who wrote science fiction under the name John Christopher, has passed away at the age of 89. He's perhaps best known for his young adult Tripods series as well as the post-apocalyptic novels Empty World and The Death of Grass (also published as No Blade of Grass).

John Christopher

Read more at Locus Online.

“What I was suddenly aware of was the importance of their being whatever each of them was---cocky and contemptuous, or bothered and beaten---as long as it was something they'd come to in their own way: the importance of being human, in fact. The peace and harmony Uncle Ian and the others claimed to be handing out in fact was death, because without being yourself, an individual, you weren't really alive.”
― John Christopher, When the Tripods Came


( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 6th, 2012 02:41 pm (UTC)
Sorry to hear it. I've been meaning to read "Death of Grass" for years :(
Feb. 11th, 2012 10:36 pm (UTC)
It's very sad news. :(
Feb. 6th, 2012 04:08 pm (UTC)
Oh, I've just recently found two of the Tripod books to re-read, as soon as I came across the first, so I was thinking of John Christopher not long ago, after many years... These things are sad...
Feb. 11th, 2012 10:37 pm (UTC)
Isn't it bizarre, the synchronicity of it all? It is sad news indeed.
Feb. 6th, 2012 07:40 pm (UTC)
One of the authors I used to read tucked away in the school library, when I was bunking off games lessons ...
Feb. 11th, 2012 10:38 pm (UTC)
Awwww! He was a gateway for so many readers into the world of SF. He will be missed!
Feb. 6th, 2012 08:50 pm (UTC)
Sad news indeed.
Feb. 11th, 2012 10:37 pm (UTC)
Indeed. :(
Feb. 6th, 2012 10:32 pm (UTC)
I'm crushed. He is the reason I grew up in the shared spotlight of SF rather than simply animal stories. The White Mountains Trilogy+1 is probably the most influential, non-Walt-Morey thing I ever read as a kid.

Edited at 2012-02-06 10:33 pm (UTC)
Feb. 11th, 2012 10:43 pm (UTC)
Awwww! *huge hugs* I didn't discover and enjoy him until later, but I can well imagine how powerful his work would've been if I'd had the good luck to read him at a younger age. How fortunate you were to find his work - and how fortunate we are that he fostered in you a love of SF! He will be missed and remembered.
Feb. 7th, 2012 12:12 pm (UTC)
Oh No! The Tripod trilogy is what introduced me to SF when I was 9. The books have never left me. I've always meant to read Death of Grass.
Feb. 11th, 2012 10:47 pm (UTC)
Several of my SF-loving friends have said the same thing: he was their introduction to the genre. I didn't discover him until later, but what a service he did by planting a lifelong love of SF in readers (of all ages) - and what a tribute to his work, that he's remembered so lovingly!
Feb. 24th, 2012 01:38 am (UTC)
I'm so sorry to hear this! Although actually, I didn't know he was still alive.

I was just thinking about the Tripod trilogy, too--surely it must have influenced the Hunger Games trilogy, which I just finished reading.

I went to a weird progressive elementary school for two years in the early 1970's and one of the very best things they did was sit us down for half an hour after lunch every day and read us books, one chapter at a time. They read us Gale Sayers' autobiography (one chapter of which got turned into the movie Brian's Song), a number of other books I don't remember so well, The Hobbit, and the Tripod trilogy. Looking back, I realize my teachers were actually (as one of our students cheerily labeled TODS and me) "big ol' nerds." Bless their hearts!
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )

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