SFF Stories with Strong Cold War Elements


Well-Known Member
Aug 21, 2010
Plots, settings, predicaments, atmosphere. The real Cold War era on this planet, not sf stories that are veiled allegories of the Cold War, etc.

Could include tensions leading to atomic war. I’d allow Alas, Babylon. But not post-atomic war stories about mutants. Anxiety, irony, shadows, escapes, secret losses and victories, rumor, courage, betrayal, ordinary people in danger, the unthinkable, some of these might be in these stories.

Budrys’s Who? is a good example of what I’m seeking. Powers’s Declare.
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There's quite a few things that nearly fit your requirements, but off the top of my head, I can only think of a short story by Harry Harrison about rival androids that really fits. It's in Prime Number.

I'd bet a large amount of money that there's a Lovecraft Cold War novel, because there's a Lovecraft story for everything.
The Universe Maker by A E Van Vogt
Under Pressure by Frank Herbert
Invasion of the Body Snatchers by Jack Finney
The Puppet Masters by Robert A Heinlein
Colossus by D F Jones
Tomorrow Might Be Different by Mack Reynolds
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The Bamboo Saucer (movie, 1968)
Americans, Russians, and Chinese!
"Eon" by Greg Bear.
"Missile Gap" by Charles Stross.
"Yellow Blue Tibia" by Adam Roberts
...none of them exactly on target, but all use the Cold War in interesting ways.
Speaking of which ... I think Charles Stross' "A Colder War" novella (novelette? noverillo? steroidal short story?) might apply. I found it a highly effective story, whether or not it does.
Bombs Away : The Hot War
Fallout: The Hot War
Armistice : The Hot War

By Harry Turtledove

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