(1908-1990) US author whose first novel, Slow Dawning (1946) as by Jane Howes, was not sf or fantasy. She began publishing sf with "In Hiding" for Astounding in November 1948, the first of several stories assembled as Children of the Atom (stories November 1948-March 1950 Astounding; fixup 1953). The narrative concerns a number of radiation-engendered child geniuses (see Superman) who initially hide their abilities from the world, then reveal themselves, taking the risk that in trying to help normal humans they may end up as a martyred Pariah Elite. The story is sensitively told, avoiding most of the Clichés of Pulp-sf stories about persecuted children who are destined to rule the world. Shiras also published some stories in the early 1970s. [JC]
see also: Anti-Intellectualism in SF; Children in SF; Intelligence; Mutants; Women SF Writers.
Wilmar House Shiras
born Boston, Massachusetts: 23 September 1908
died Alameda, California: 23 December 1990
Previous versions of this entry