Capon, Paul

Tagged: Author

(1911-1969) UK writer who also worked for many years as an editor – working on three mid-1930s films for Maurice Elvey (1887-1967), including The Clairvoyant (1934) – and administrator in film and television production, ending his career as head of the Film Department of Independent Television News (1963-1967). From 1942 he wrote fairly copiously in various genres, including detective stories – 37 novels in all, according to his widow. He began writing sf with the Antigeos trilogy – The Other Side of the Sun (1950), The Other Half of the Planet (1952) and Down to Earth (1954) – some parts of which were serialized on BBC Radio. The sequence deals with the discovery of a Counter-Earth, hidden as usual directly behind the Sun, whose Utopian life leaves itself open to exploitation by villainous humans. Into the Tenth Millennium (1956) concerns three people who travel into the future utilizing a Drug which slows down body metabolism; they emerge into a utopian world of great charm and interest – Capon's Utopias are less stuffy and preachy than most – but the woman cannot make the necessary psychological adjustment.

Most of Capon's sf was for children, beginning with The World at Bay (1953). Most notable perhaps were The Cave of Cornelius (1959; vt The End of the Tunnel 1959), in which four children find a Roman Lost World located Underground, whose inhabitants are discovered in the midst of Saturnalia; and Flight of Time (1960), a Time Travel tale whose young protagonists visit both the future and the past, having illustrative adventures in both eras. Capon wrote well and created unusually solid future worlds. [PN/JC]

see also: Children's SF; Physics

Harry Paul Capon

born Kenton Hall, Suffolk: 18 December 1911 (12 December 1912 has also been given)

died Hampstead, London: 24 November 1969

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Antigeos

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