R.I.P. William Sleator

Singular author William Sleator  has passed away.

As a teen I read and re-read and re-read certain books. One of those was “House of Stairs” by William Sleator. It’s a science fictionish tale of a group of teens who are subjects in a behavior modification experiment. This book, for me, encapsulates one the most fascinating aspects of science fiction/fantasy. It explores the  question of how people will behave in unusual, even unprecedented situations.

I think this is why I tend to prefer “soft” science fiction. For me, the draw is not technology, it’s people. I love Ursula K. LeGuin for her anthropological approach. Ray Bradbury is another favorite in this area. I know some people are dismissive of genre fiction as “not serious” or something, and William Sleator was double-labeled, because he was also considered a young adult author. But I’ve read widely and eclectically throughout my life, and in my opinion, if you want fiction that explores the human psyche, you could do worse than picking up a book by Sleator.

Hmm…maybe it’s time for another reading of “House of Stairs.” I haven’t visited it in years.

Author: thedamari

I live in Missouri, a more beautiful place than many realize. I love writing, reading, walking, bicycling, and making lists. I’ve written poetry since I was seven. A few years ago I branched out into short fiction and memoir pieces. I also perpetually have a novel in progress. My brain pursues ideas at a brisk pace, wandering all over the map. This blog represents one of my efforts to keep up with it.

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