The Mermaids in God’s Eye

There is a moment in the film Mermaids when Cher’s character slaps her daughter (played by Winona Ryder) in the middle of an argument. The shock of the blow causes both of them to pause, and there is a splendid moment when they realise that they are arguing hammer and tongs not because they are very different but because they are very similar.

This obviously reminded me of the great 1970s novel The Mote in God’s Eye by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. If you don’t get the reference or the similarity I will explain it all after the break!

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Vortex Books

If you lived in Brighton in the 1970s and 80s and were into sci-fi then there was only one place to hang out – Vortex Books not far from Preston Circus. This was a shop that sold both comics and books and only sci-fi/fantasy. This was in the days before CDs / VHS /DVDs so what you had was a shop stacked high with all sorts of material, some of it imported from the states the rest the staple fare of the genre at the time – Asimov, Pohl and Moorcock being amongst my most common purchases (I won’t mention the Perry Rhodan series if you don’t mind!).

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