Sutton, Jeff

Tagged: Author

(1913-1979) US author, married to Jean Sutton, who began publishing sf with "The Third Empire" for Spaceway in February 1955; whose background – he had been a journalist, served time in the Marines and done research in high-altitude survival – was reflected in several of his novels, from First on the Moon (1958), his debut, to Spacehive (1960) and Whisper from the Stars (1970). Sutton alone wrote with a somewhat dilute clarity, his tales occasionally rising above the routine when he dealt in Near-Future subject matter, though neither Bombs in Orbit (1959) or H-Bomb over America (1967) managed to dramatize Cold War conflicts among the superpowers with much conviction: in both tales, global catastrophes are more or less averted. The Atom Conspiracy (August-September 1961 Amazing as "The Man Who Had No Brains"; 1963), set half a millennium after World War Three, is a Pariah Elite tale involving Telepaths who want to revive nuclear Technology for the good of all of us; but Sutton's reach did not extend convincingly into such far-flung regions.

His novels with his wife included the competent The Beyond (1968), about a special agent on a planet where ESP is banned who discovers himself to be a Telepath, and Lord of the Stars (1969), a Space Opera whose young protagonist, a human boy, must oppose the Galactic Empire of a violently imperialist race of Aliens. Most of the remaining tales written with his wife, generally designed for Young Adult readers, convey a similar verve, where nothing unexpectable happens, but a sense of competence prevails. [JC]

see also: Children's SF.

Jefferson Howard Sutton

born Los Angeles, California: 25 July 1913

died San Diego, California: 31 January 1979

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