|Cover art by|
Lucky for me, I discovered the Demon Princes series about the time that The Book of Dreams came out, so I did not have to wait through the 12 year-long pause between the third and the fourth novel.
For me, it was about 12 years between discovery of the original Foundation Trilogy and reading the 4th book, Foundation's Edge. I was not impressed by Asimov's new novel and I felt that the story of Golan Trevize read like a rather desperate and uninspired attempt to bring the Foundation saga into the space age. Thus, I was in no hurry to read the 5th book in the saga, Foundation and Earth. However, when I eventually learned that Daneel was waiting for Golan on the Moon, I was very much impressed.
The Demon Prince Trilogy
|a parade of "Drusilla clones", inspired by The Palace of Love|
Sailmaker Beach on Alphanor (one of the Rigel planets) seems to have been a popular resort for Gersen. Had he decided to take up permanent residence there, his buddy of the IPCC, Walter Koedelin, would have been close at hand.
With his vast wealth and as owner of Cosmopolis, maybe Gersen could have invented for himself a new career, possibly writing about crime and criminals for the Rigellian Journal.
Both Asimov and Vance wrote for science fiction magazines in the 1940s. Often authors were paid by the word for stories published in magazines and parts of the Foundation saga and the Demon Princes stories seem a trifle bloated. Editing and condensing the Foundations saga and the Demon Princes novels, perhaps reducing their bulk to new "essential trilogies" would be interesting projects. At the same time, it would be fun to update the level of technology in the stories. For example, updated and streamlined versions could throw in a few modern conveniences like cell phones and genetic testing to identify alien Star Kings. Maybe these tweaked versions could even find a place on the Big Screen.
The pain of cutting
|cover art by Ed Emshwiller|
I've never read the original version of Star King, as published in Galaxy magazine. However, apparently Demon Prince Attel Malagate (the Woe) was originally called "Grendel the Monster" in the magazine version of the story. The cover art for the magazine showed "beauty" Dasce, a character who deserves to be brought either to television or the Big Screen. He once had his eye lids cut off, requiring him to wear prostheses that can moisten his eyes or cover them. I suspect that even Vance was happy with the change from Grendel to Malagate, but I would not mind Gersen using modern genetics to quickly identify Malagate as the Star King, possibly cutting the whole novel to about 25% of its original length. After introducing "Tehalt's planet" early in the story, it seems to take forever for Vance to get the readers to that destination. Vance probably knew that the story was too long; at two points he has a character give voice to hopes their "fantastic voyage" can hurry up and end, already.
|planet of the apes (source)|
Trysta and Ekcolir
The problem I'm confronting is how to quickly provide readers with enough backstory so that they can understand the shock experienced by Ivory when she realizes the true meaning of her unusual genetic endowment. At best I can only provide readers with a hint of what is going on, then they must follow along with Ivory while she tries to find the mysterious place where she was born and those members of her family who can help her sort out the secret history of the human species.
The Hierion Domain
|in the Hierion Domain (source)|
For Trysta and Ekcolir, I could take the same approach as that used by Asimov. Six months ago, I originally imagined that Ivory's place of birth was a secret undersea base located in the Atlantic Ocean, rather jokingly called "Atlantis" by its residents. However, locating "Atlantis" in space is just as tricky as locating the space-time bubble where Harlan lives: Eternity.
More recently, I realized that the only thing located in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean is a kind of portal, a "hierion tube" that connects our world to the Hierion Domain. Ivory's place of birth was within the Hierion Domain.
|portal to the Hierion|
Asimov's description of Harlan traveling through time provides no wiz-bang Hollywood moments. When Harlen moves from Eternity into Time, there are no flashing lights or dramatic sounds. Similarly, I imagine that Ivory could (with assistance from Many Sails) simply "step sideways" into the Hierion Domain and seemingly disappear from her home in Salinópolis, Brazil, rather like being teleported.
In my whimsical cover image for Daveed the Luk'ie (shown to the right), I included a mysterious red device connecting two people, one in the Hierion Domain and the other on Earth. I'm trying to imagine an object that Ivory could find in her childhood home in Salinópolis that functions as a "key", allowing her to slip quietly from our world into Atlantis. Arriving in Atlantis, Ivory begins her second life during which she helps develop her clone sister Angela's ability to access information about other Realities, information that exists inside the Sedronic Domain.