Praise for A Better World's in Birth!:
"[Waldrop] began his notes for the story in 1983 and researched it exhaustively, all because the world needed a Communist ghost story. It's wacky. It's intellectual. It makes your brain hurt. It's Waldrop. Give him a try."
It's 1876, twenty-three years after the executions of the Peoples' Revolutionary leaders Friedrich Engels, Karl Marx, and Richard Wagner — and spectres in the guise of these three men are haunting Communist Europe, specifically the city of Dresden. Officer Rienzi, from the Peoples' Department for Security, is called in to investigate. Are these spectres truly ghosts of the Revolution's leaders? Or is there a larger conspiracy afoot? And if a conspiracy, does it involve Comrade Leader Eisenmann, who became head of the Peoples' Federated States of Europe following the death of Wagner?
With A Better World's in Birth!, author Howard Waldrop has skillfully crafted another of his trademark alternate history stories, this one about the peoples' revolutionary leader (and German composer) Richard Wagner. More than 10,000 words of pure Waldrop. In the Afterword, the author details the story behind this story that was twenty years in the making. Each copy is signed and numbered by the author on the limitation page.
With scintillating wraparound cover art by artist Nicholas Jainschigg.
". . . no Waldrop story is ever much like any previous Waldrop story, and in that respect (as well as in the panache and individuality of the writing, the sweep of imagination, and the depth of erudition), he resembles those two other great Uniques, R. A. Lafferty and Avram Davidson."
— Gardner Dozois
Out of Print!
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Read Rick Kleffel's commentary in The Agony Column for 06-30-2004
Read the Locus Magazine review
Read the review on SFRevu
Read the SFSite review
Read the essay "Howard Waldrop and the Future of Science Fiction" by Daniel Day on Literary Kicks
View the full wraparound dust jacket art by Nicholas Jainschigg