Working name of Welsh-born physician, biomedical engineer and author Edward Llewellyn-Thomas (1917-1984), in Canada from 1951; he held professorships variously in pharmacology, medicine, electrical engineering and psychology, publishing at least sixty papers in his linked specialities from the mid 1950s on. Most of his sf is set loosely in the same universe; his first three novels – the Douglas Convolution sequence comprising The Douglas Convolution (1979), The Bright Companion (1980) and Prelude to Chaos (1983) – focus on a twenty-second-century Earth suffering from widespread female infertility due to the side-effects of an anti-cancer Drug. The muscularly told first volume follows the arrival in this world, via Time Travel, of an ingenious mathematician, who proves invaluable to the Order of fertile women; the second presents a tour of the world dominated by this Order; the third is a weak prequel.
His later novels all involve First Contact. In Salvage and Destroy (1984) Llewellyn moved into Space Opera, though Genetic Engineering continues to play a role in a complex plot involving two Immortal species of Aliens, one of which becomes involved with Earth. Fugitive in Transit (1985) similarly confronts humans with representatives of galactic civilization, in this case the Galactic Transit Authority, which is chasing the woman who has discovered a Stargate. Word-Bringer (1986) presents its protagonist with the discovery – familiar to readers of Clifford D Simak – that aliens have left on Earth a device which spreads knowledge for free, engendering all sorts of scientific advances. Though he did not seem destined to become a major writer in the field, Llewellyn's tales were literate, numerate and attractively marked by their frequent use of active and personable Women in SF as protagonists. [JC]
see also: Canada; ESP; Linguistics.
born Salisbury, Wiltshire: 15 December 1917
died Toronto, Ontario: 5 July 1984
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