MacIsaac, Fred

Tagged: Author

(1886-1940) US author who appeared frequently in Argosy after World War One with stories in which his sober prophetic intelligence wrestles with his Pulp-magazine instincts, and usually loses. His work remains of interest, however. The Vanishing Professor (9-30 January 1926 Argosy All-Story Weekly; 1927) complicatedly engages a venal Scientist, inventor of an Invisibility machine, with crime czars and detectives. The portrait of a publicity-conscious all-powerful magnate in "The Great Commander" (3-24 July 1926 Argosy All-Story Weekly) adumbrates Richard Condon's Emperor of America (1990). "World Brigands" (30 June-4 August 1928 Argosy All-Story Weekly) suggests that the USA will develop an atomic bomb around 1940 in response to threats of war. The Mental Marvel (1930) deals with a boxer whose vast mental powers – he defeats everyone in the ring, and is irrepressibly attractive to women – represent an Evolutionary leap. "The Last Atlantide" (17 December 1927-21 January 1928 The Popular Stories/Popular Magazine; 2000) is a Lost Race tale featuring the discovery of documents about Atlantis in Mexico. The Hothouse World (21 February-28 March 1931 Argosy; 1965) awakes its protagonist from Suspended Animation into the insanely restrictive Ruined Earth world of 2051 CE – its inhabitants pent in a single domed Keep – which he liberates once it is demonstrated that the air outside can again be breathed. [JC]

see also: Cities; Economics; Politics.

Frederick John MacIsaac

born Cambridge, Massachusetts: 22 March 1886

died Los Angeles, California: 5 May 1940

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