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The Black Grail

Damien Broderick

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Science fiction

An SF Gateway eBook: bringing the classics to the future.

A millennium from now, global warming has gone into retreat as the Sun's dynamics convulse. The great ice returns, driving humankind back to its primitive origins. Here, bands of brutal warriors wage war in the bitter cold. Xaraf Firebridge, powerful young son of a barbarian chieftain, enrages his sire by adopting the pacifistic doctrine of an outland mystic, Darkbloom. Before he can break his vow and slay his father, he is drawn into a temporal wormline and flung a further million years into the Earth of the Failing Sun.

Clever and determined, Xaraf wanders landscapes haunted by prospects of doom and overseen by a trio of godlike Powers. Since childhood he has dreamed of a beautiful young woman. His fate, he sees, is to rescue her from captivity--and perhaps save the whole world, now moved into the outer solar system and lit by a string of tiny orbiting suns.

He has yet to meet his true foe, the dragon whose history stands opposed to humankind's. But which will prove to be this world's mythic Galahad?

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Damien Broderick

Damien Broderick is Australia's dean of science fiction, with a body of extraordinary work reaching back to the early 1960's. Like the late George Turner, he captures the distinctive flavor of his native country while reaching out to American and European readers. The White Abacus won two year's best awards. His stories and novels, like those of his younger peer Greg Egan, are drenched with bleeding-edge ideas. Distinctively, he blends ideas and poetry like nobody since Roger Zelazny, and a wild silly humor is always ready to bubble out, as in the cosmic comedy Striped Holes. His award-winning novel The Dreaming Dragons is featured in David Pringle's SF: The 100 Best Novels, and was chosen as year's best by Kingsley Amis. It has been revised and updated as The Dreaming. This new version appears for the first time at In 1982, his early cyberpunk novel The Judas Mandala coined the term 'virtual reality.' His most recent novels are Godplayers and K-Machines.

With David G. Hartwell, he edited Centaurus: The Best of Australian SF for Tor in 1999.

Like one of his heroes, Sir Arthur C. Clarke, he is also a master of writing about radical new technologies, and The Spike and The Last Mortal Generation have been Australian popular-science best sellers--both books strongly recommended in Clarke's millennial revision of his famous Profiles of the Future.

Schrodinger's Dog was chosen for Gardner Dozois's SF: Year's Best 14.

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