Helliconia Winter - The Ending

DeltaV

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I'll put this question in a spoiler in case there are readers who have not read Helliconia Winter...

I read Helliconia Winter a few months back, and here is what I noted then about the ending:

As I noted in my main comment, I had a foreboding that the ending was going to be rather abrupt. And it was. The main question of whether or not the Oligarchy was going to succeed could not be answered in this book. And that is fine. But the conclusion cried out for a few more simple paragraphs to resolve, at least on the short term, the relationships between Luterin Shokerandit, Toress Lahl, and Insil Esikananzi. There is a lot of doubt about which woman Shokerandit is going to end up with, and I found the situation of both women at the end of the novel rather sad and pathetic. I know that I am contradicting what I wrote in my comments on Helliconia Summer, but their story is the one that I would have liked to have seen extended, if not completely concluded.

I got thinking again about this book, and became curious as to whether Brian Aldiss ever commented on the ending of Helliconia Winter. I have poked around on the Internet, and came up empty. Did he ever say anything, say, at a SF convention, or write in a fanzine about his thoughts on the conclusion of the saga? I thought I would ask here as there are people far more knowledgeable about Brian Aldiss' writings than I.

Any ideas?
 

Stephen Palmer

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I can't add any insight here, I'm afraid. In my original pb edition, Aldiss comments on his own work by writing to his son (Clive, I think), but that's all I know. However there are in the SF world various people who knew Aldiss personally or who were connected to him, so it would be well worth asking around - on FB for instance. It's possible that folk like David Langford or John Gribbin knew him, and might therefore know more about the history behind Aldiss masterpiece.
 

DeltaV

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Hi Stephen. I think, though, that you might very well be the resident expert on Brian Aldiss' works here at SFF Chronicles. What do you think of the ending of Helliconia WInter?
 

Stephen Palmer

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I can't remember the details you mention at the end of the novel, it's been a while since I read it. My main "problem" was the section on Earth, with the huge viruses. I think that was taking James Lovelock's ideas a bit too far...
 

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