Jack Vance: A science fiction great

We at HarperVoyager are so sad to hear of the passing of Jack Vance, who died over the weekend – aged 96. A true science fiction great.

Jack Vance

Jack Vance passed away quietly on Sunday 26th May, at the age of 96. A prolific writer over five decades in three genres, Jack was a true original, a man who lived life on his own terms and wove his writing life in and around a multitude of personal passions and projects.

Widely considered one of the greats of the genre, Jack Vance’s novels have entertained millions of readers worldwide. From such classics as THE DYING EARTH to LYONESSE to NIGHT LAMP, Vance’s contribution to SF and Fantasy will live on in his work through his rich sense of language, his pitch-perfect handling of tone and his subtle way with irony.

George R.R. Martin called him ‘the greatest living SF writer and a master of Fantasy’ and said that ‘experiment taught me only Jack Vance can write like Jack Vance’.

Jane Johnson, Jack Vance’s UK Editor and Publisher at HarperVoyager, said:
‘We’re really sad. His last novel with us was LURULU (2004) after which he was unable to write as a result of increasing blindness, but we published a tribute to him by George and Gardner Dozois, both lifelong Vance fans, in 2009 entitled SONGS OF THE DYING EARTH. The work will live on, of course, but there’s no replacement for such genius. It really is the end of an era.’

Jack Vance’s agent Christopher Lott said:
‘He was a true original, a man who lived life on his own terms. Something rare in this world, now. He will be missed, and I hope and trust his life and works will be celebrated for a long, long time to come.’

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