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For other authors named David Langford, see the disambiguation page.

98+ Works 2,114 Members 51 Reviews 1 Favorited

About the Author

Image credit: Szymon Sokól (Worldcon 2005, Glasgow)

Series

Works by David Langford

The End of Harry Potter? (2006) 202 copies
The Space Eater (1982) 169 copies
The Leaky Establishment (1994) 164 copies
Different Kinds of Darkness (2000) 66 copies
Earthdoom (1987) 51 copies
Guts: A Comedy of Manners (2001) 11 copies
Starcombing (2009) 7 copies
The net of Babel [short fiction] (1995) — Author — 6 copies
The Limbo Files (2009) 6 copies
Analysing Talk (1994) 6 copies
BLIT (1988) 5 copies
The Lions In The Desert (1993) 4 copies
Platen Stories (1987) 4 copies
Leaks (1991) 3 copies
If Looks Could Kill (1992) 2 copies
Ellipses (1990) 2 copies
3.47 AM [short fiction] (1983) 2 copies
Cube Root [short fiction] (1985) 2 copies
comp.basilisk FAQ (1999) 2 copies
Sacrifice 1 copy
Irrational Numbers (1994) 1 copy
Ansible 1 copy

Associated Works

The Science Fiction Encyclopedia (1993) — Contributor — 685 copies
The Time Traveller's Almanac (2013) — Contributor — 565 copies
The Mammoth Book of New Sherlock Holmes Adventures (1997) — Contributor — 513 copies
The Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997) — Contributor — 510 copies
The Mammoth Book of Comic Fantasy (1998) — Contributor, some editions — 503 copies
Shadows Over Innsmouth (1994) — Contributor — 370 copies
The Hard SF Renaissance (2003) — Contributor — 345 copies
The Mammoth Book of Seriously Comic Fantasy (1999) — Contributor — 333 copies
Year's Best SF 6 (2001) — Contributor — 282 copies
Year's Best SF 4 (1999) — Contributor — 263 copies
Year's Best SF 2 (1997) — Contributor — 262 copies
Alien Emergencies (A Sector General Omnibus) (2002) — Introduction — 235 copies
Year's Best SF 11 (2006) — Contributor — 235 copies
100 Vicious Little Vampire Stories (1995) — Contributor — 217 copies
The Mammoth Book of Awesome Comic Fantasy (2001) — Contributor — 184 copies
The Mammoth Book of New Comic Fantasy (2005) — Contributor — 180 copies
Terry Pratchett: Guilty Of Literature (2000) — Introduction, some editions — 151 copies
Starlight 2 (1998) — Contributor — 137 copies
Year's Best SF 16 (2011) — Contributor — 128 copies
Futures from Nature (2007) — Contributor — 113 copies
The Best of Interzone (1997) — Contributor — 99 copies
Temps (1991) — Contributor — 98 copies
Thor's Hammer (1979) — Contributor — 92 copies
New Skies: An Anthology of Today's Science Fiction (2003) — Contributor — 85 copies
Other Edens (1987) — Contributor — 83 copies
After War (1985) — Contributor — 79 copies
Witpunk (2003) — Author — 73 copies
100 Twisted Little Tales of Torment (1998) — Contributor — 64 copies
Villains!: Book 1 (1992) — Contributor — 62 copies
Digital Dreams (1990) — Contributor — 61 copies
65 Great Tales of Horror (1981) — Contributor — 59 copies
The Year's Best Horror Stories: XVIII (1990) — Contributor — 58 copies
100 Hilarious Little Howlers (1999) — Contributor — 54 copies
Eurotemps (1992) — Contributor — 54 copies
The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror 09 (1998) — Contributor — 54 copies
Is Anybody Out There? (2010) — Contributor — 53 copies
Interzone: The 3rd Anthology (1988) — Contributor — 50 copies
The Year's Best Horror Stories: Series XIII (1985) — Cover artist — 50 copies
More Tales from the "Forbidden Planet" (1990) — Contributor — 49 copies
New Worlds 2 (1992) — Contributor — 47 copies
New Worlds 4 (1994) — Contributor — 46 copies
100 Fiendish Little Frightmares (1997) — Contributor — 46 copies
4 Novels (1984) — Introduction, some editions — 45 copies
Arrows of Eros (1989) — Contributor — 43 copies
Fables from the Fountain (2011) — Contributor — 42 copies
New Writings in SF-27 (1977) — Contributor — 42 copies
The Year's Best Horror Stories: XXII (1994) — Contributor — 42 copies
Interzone: The 4th Anthology (1983) — Contributor — 41 copies
Andromeda 3 (1978) — Contributor — 38 copies
The Fortune Teller (1997) — Contributor — 35 copies
100 Tiny Tales of Terror (1996) — Contributor — 33 copies
The Weerde Book 2: The Book of the Ancients (1993) — Contributor — 31 copies
Andromeda 2 (1977) — Contributor — 29 copies
After Midnight (1986) — Contributor — 29 copies
The Big Book of Cyberpunk (2023) — Contributor — 26 copies
Drabble II: Double Century (1990) — Contributor — 25 copies
Book of Alien Monsters (1982) — Contributor — 24 copies
Drabble Project (1988) — Contributor — 17 copies
Asimov's Science Fiction: Vol. 24, No. 9 [September 2000] (2000) — Contributor — 10 copies
Interzone 259 (2015) — Contributor — 10 copies
Alien Encounters (1982) — Contributor — 8 copies
White Dwarf 70 (1985) — Editor — 8 copies
White Dwarf 63 (1985) — Editor — 7 copies
Interzone 257 (2015) — Contributor — 7 copies
White Dwarf 74 (1986) — Editor — 7 copies
Interzone 284 (2019) — Contributor — 7 copies
White Dwarf 60 (1984) — Editor — 7 copies
White Dwarf 65 (1985) — Editor — 6 copies
White Dwarf 77 (1986) — Contributor — 6 copies
White Dwarf 99 (1988) — Contributor — 6 copies
White Dwarf 67 (1985) — Editor — 6 copies
White Dwarf 75 (1986) — Editor — 6 copies
White Dwarf 56 (1984) — Editor — 5 copies
White Dwarf 57 (1984) — Editor — 5 copies
White Dwarf 59 (1984) — Editor — 5 copies
White Dwarf 84 (1986) — Contributor — 5 copies
White Dwarf 39 (1983) — Editor — 5 copies
White Dwarf 79 (1986) — Contributor — 5 copies
White Dwarf 44 (1983) — Editor — 5 copies
White Dwarf 76 (1986) — Editor — 4 copies
White Dwarf 48 (1983) — Editor — 4 copies
White Dwarf 58 (1984) — Editor — 4 copies
White Dwarf 83 (1986) — Contributor — 4 copies
White Dwarf 98 (1988) — Contributor — 4 copies
White Dwarf 87 (1987) — Contributor — 4 copies
Interzone 271 (2017) — Contributor — 4 copies
White Dwarf 104 (1988) — Contributor — 4 copies
White Dwarf 97 (1988) — Contributor — 4 copies
White Dwarf 49 (1984) — Editor — 3 copies
White Dwarf 51 (1984) — Editor — 3 copies
White Dwarf 94 (1987) — Contributor — 3 copies
White Dwarf 96 (1987) — Contributor — 3 copies
White Dwarf 105 (1988) — Contributor — 2 copies
White Dwarf 93 (1987) — Contributor — 2 copies
Fortean Times 89 — Contributor — 2 copies
Fortean Times 92 — Contributor — 2 copies
Fortean Times 95 — Contributor — 2 copies
White Dwarf 95 (1987) — Contributor — 2 copies
Focus 72 (2021) — Contributor — 1 copy
Focus 69 (2019) — Contributor — 1 copy
Focus 67 (2017) — Contributor — 1 copy
White Dwarf 103 (1988) — Contributor — 1 copy
Focus 71 (2020) — Contributor — 1 copy
White Dwarf 106 (1988) — Contributor — 1 copy
Focus 68 (2018) — Contributor — 1 copy
New Writings in SF - Special 3 (1978) — Contributor — 1 copy

Tagged

20th century (32) anthology (1,077) collection (71) comedy (35) criticism (42) Discworld (146) ebook (71) encyclopedia (78) essays (45) fantasy (852) fiction (884) hardcover (51) horror (231) humor (379) Kindle (38) literary criticism (64) literature (47) magazines (37) medicine (33) mystery (84) non-fiction (247) paperback (88) quiz (32) read (116) reference (330) science fiction (1,287) Science Fiction/Fantasy (52) sf (483) sff (110) Sherlock Holmes (85) short fiction (40) short stories (726) signed (37) speculative fiction (51) stories (34) Terry Pratchett (55) time travel (66) to-read (488) unread (104) vampires (33)

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Members

Reviews

Many times, and quite effusively, Terry Pratchett mentions this book in his sort of autobiography, "A Slip of the Keyboard." In addition, Terry Pratchett wrote the forward to this edition of this book. And having read both of those as well as this book, it is clear that Sir Terry Pratchett is a very British writer. This book is a very British take on the activities of workers at a nuclear research station in England during the 1960s. It is not that the activities of the workers could only have happened in Britain, but rather, things like the emphasis on which activities are important and which trivial, and definitely which are humorous, could only have been chosen by a very British writer.… (more)
 
Flagged
mlsestak | 5 other reviews | Dec 9, 2022 |
This was OK for me, but no more. There are two SFnal gimmicks needed to drive the plot and that was enough to make the result seem contrived to me. First, Earth has apparently been involved in international warfare so long that a special set of troops has been developed to endure and even enjoy being violently killed and reborn. Next, there is a wormhole technology but it turns out using it causes stars to go nova all over the place. So now our hero is selected to be sent through a really tiny (1.934 cm) wormhole to a colony in order to convince them to stop using the technology. Somehow they have a way to squeeze him through that hole, fatally hence why they pick him, but reconstructibly. I couldn't figure out how that worked. Then eventually his talents are needed again for the big climax. Oh, and there's a nascent love interest who goes through the same process but she remained a cypher for me for the entire book. So much detail is spent on the physics at several points that I assume some of it must make sense, but it bogs down the narrative.

OK, and recommended if space opera mixed with a bit of angst is your thing.
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½
2 vote
Flagged
ChrisRiesbeck | 3 other reviews | Oct 26, 2021 |
I love how a whole world can be created in a short story. Many of my early SF readings were the short stories in Analog magazine. I like short stories which I can read in up to 30 minutes. Longer than that they become something else. The perfect thing about outstanding short-stories like "Different Kinds of Darkness" is that it's short. I don't want to get to know the characters if I'm forced to part with them after 30 minutes or an hour. A lot of authors nowadays seem to be under the impression that all they have to do is write a scene and then just stop - no narrative, no message, no characters, no atmosphere, no point. Particularly true of single-author collections (but not Langford’s). I don't think I've really appreciated any writers in more than a single shorty story since the likes of Borges, Clarke, Langford & Bradbury. I measure shortness and thus quality of short stories by comparing how much of time passes in the narrative compared to how much time the book takes to read. Short stories - genre or literary - are more able to stun the reader in their entirety. You can forget bits of even the best novel. But an incisive short story hits you hard and hits you whole. I remember acutely reading Different Darkness” the first time round. The essence of Best Short Stories is something very difficult to attain. On the other hand, I’ve re-read entire novels I forgot which I read only a few years ago.

A well-executed short story is truly a Thing of Beauty. In this collection we have several Things of Beauty.

We all know Borges was the master of short stories. Langford comes a close second.
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1 vote
Flagged
antao | 4 other reviews | Aug 22, 2021 |

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Works
98
Also by
115
Members
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Popularity
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Rating
3.8
Reviews
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ISBNs
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Favorited
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