James Tiptree, Jr., burst onto the science fiction scene in the late 1960s with a series of hard-edged, provocative stories. He redefined the genre with such classics as Houston, Houston, Do You Read? and The Women Men Don't See. For nearly ten years he wrote and carried on intimate correspondences with other writers--Philip K. Dick, Harlan Ellison, and Ursula K. Le Guin, though none of them knew his true identity. Then the cover was blown on his alter ego: "he" was actually a sixty-one-year-old woman named Alice Bradley Sheldon. A feminist, she took a male name as a joke--and found the voice to write her stories.
Based on extensive research, exclusive interviews, and full access to Alice Sheldon's papers, Julie Phillips has penned a biography of a profoundly original writer and a woman far ahead of her time.
Locus Awards - Winner, Marfield Prize Finalist
Introduction: Who Is Tiptree, What Is He?
No one [...] has, to my knowledge, ever met Tiptree, ever seen him, ever talked with him on the phone. No one knows where he lives, what he looks like, what he does for a living. [...] He volunteers...
Praise for James Tiptree, Jr.
“An incredible life, done elegant justice. Tiptree-Sheldon is one of the century's astonishing figures.” —Jonathan Lethem, bestselling author of The Fortress of Solitude
“This account of a heroically inventive and highly peculiar quest for personal and creative fulfillment may make you rethink your ideas about what it means to be male or female--or, for that matter, human.” —Francine Prose, O, The Oprah Magazine
“Ms. Phillips does a fine, perceptive job of piecing together the patchwork of her subject's personality.” —The New York Times Book Review (cover review)