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Official Author Site of
Sylvia Engdahl


Now with Improved navigation to over 80 pages of information and essays about my books, space, medical policy, and more.

Coming Soon!
Reflections on the Future: Collected Essays


I'll soon be publishing an ebook containing 26 of my essays, including two autobiographies--the one from Contemporary Authors plus a newer one. Most but not all of these essays are also at this website, but as some are quite long, you may prefer to read them in Kindle or epub format. Here are links to the online versions of the newest ones.

Reflections on Enchantress from the Stars
A more detailed and formal presentation of things I have been saying about the story in my FAQs and elsewhere for many years--comments on interpretations that trouble me. Please read it, especially if you are a teacher who has discussed the book with young readers.

Update on the Critical Stage
An explanation of why I feel The Far Side of Evil is not outdated, plus my recent thoughts about the theory of the Critical Stage presented in that novel. Read it if you have any interest in my ideas about the importance of space colonization--or if you feel the problems on Earth should be solved before we attempt to establish colonies. (Please note that The Far Side of Evil is not a "sequel" to Enchantress from the Stars -- it is a completely independent story intended for a different audience, older teens and adults.)

Faith as the Focus of Children of the Star
The intended themes of the trilogy, and why the third book appeared long after the first two. (Contains major spoilers; don't read it until you have read the whole trilogy.)

Space Colonization, Faith, and Pascal's Wager
An essay recently published in The Space Review, arguing that although we have no evidence that large-scale space colonization will become possible, it is not irrational to have faith that ultimately it can ensure the long-term survival of humankind.

Space Age Mythology Revisited
The one thing in my Space Age Mythology series that's no longer true, and what the change reveals about public attitudes toward space.


Transhumanism Is a Dead End
An essay arguing that the premises underlying transhumanism will retard scientific understanding of the human mind. Portions of it were originally posted in 2003 in an online forum.

The Worship of Medical Authority
Introductory material for a Media Studies course I taught in 1995 about public attitudes toward medical care. I have updated it only to include references to Stewards of the Flame, which was written ten years later.


Which book should I read first?

My novels are very different from each other and people sometimes don't realize that they might not have begun with the one they would be most likely to enjoy. Here are some suggestions for choosing where to start.

If you are in 5th or 6th grade you should start with Enchantress from the Stars, and you probably won't like any of the others until you are older.

If you are in 7th or 8th grade you should start with Enchantress from the Stars, This Star Shall Abide, or -- if you are a girl who likes romance -- Journey Between Worlds. (I don't recommend The Far Side of Evil to readers below high school age.)

If you are in 9th or 10th grade, you will want to read Enchantress from the Stars if you enjoy stories told in the style of fantasy, but you don't have to read it first. And if you prefer books that aren't at all like fantasy, you should start with This Star Shall Abide, The Far Side of Evil, or Journey Beween Worlds.

If you an adult or a high school junior or senior, you can start with any of the above, but may prefer to read Children of the Star or Defender of the Flame first.

If you are an adult and the controversial medical theme of Stewards of the Flame appeals to you, then read it before the other "Flame" books. If it doesn't, then Promise of the Flame can be read first. Neither of these is suitable for YA readers, and neither needs to be read before Defender of the Flame if you prefer to skip them. Some adult readers like Defender much better.

Titles not mentioned above are sequels and shouldn't be read until after the books that precede them.


An update has been added to my autobiography. My autobiography, which was published in Contemporary Authors, Vol. 195 (Gale, 2001), Something About the Author, Vol. 122 (Gale, 2001), and originally in Something About the Author Autobiography Series, Vol. 5 (Gale, 1988), is now here at this site, with many pictures. (In the past it has been available only in large libraries or in online databases that require a library card to access.) I have just added an update section that does not appear in the published version, telling about the many important changes in my life since 2001.


I no longer sell sIgned copies of my books. I have given up my home and now reside in an assisted living facility, so I no longer have room to keep any extra copies of my books. All my extras have been given away or donated to the Friends of the Library. Of course, paperback editions of most can still be obtained from Amazon.com. They can also be ordered from other bookstores (although I receive very little royalty on those sold elsewhere because of the distribution cost).


Free ebooks to owners of paper editions. If you ever bought a new hardcover or paperback copy of one of my books (except Enchantress from the Stars) at Amazon.com you are entitled a free copy of its Kindle edition through the Matchbook program. The Kindle price will automatically show as zero on your account. If you bought a copy directly from me or from another store and would like an ebook copy, let me know and I will send you one.


Explore My Site

Here's what you'll find with the navigation tabs at the top of the pages:

ABOUT ME: My bio, awards, links to interviews and profiles, plus a complete bibilography of my published work.

MY BOOKS: The books I have written, with their covers and links to their description pages.

FAQ: Answers to frequently asked questions about my books and my personal life.

REVIEWS: Short quotes from the editorial reviews of all my books.

ESSAYS, ETC.: Links to all my essays, guest posts, and the commentary at this site, including the background articles on psi and medical issues for Stewards of the Flame, which are of wider interest than the novel itself. Some things are also linked under other headings, while others are accessible only from this page. I will be adding new essays to it from time to time.

SPACE: Main gateway to my space advocacy section. (Its individual pages are also listed on the ESSAYS page.)

MISCELLANY: Pages that don't fit under other headings, including one about my cats, a memorial to my mother who wrote YA books under the name Mildred Allen Butler, an explanation of ebook formats, and more.

CONTACT: How to reach me by email, plus a form for sending me a message and/or signing up to be notified when I add material to this site. I love hearing from readers -- please say hello!
My Novels

Children of the Star trilogy
Book 1: This Star Shall Abide
Book 2: Beyond the Tomorrow Mountains
Book 3: The Doors of the Universe
Omnibus: Children of the Star


Flame duologies
THE HIDDEN FLAME
Book 1: Stewards of the Flame
Book 2: Promise of the Flame
Omnibus: The Hidden Flame
THE RISING FLAME
Book 1: Defender of the Flame
Book 2: Herald of the Flame
Omnibus: The Rising Flame

Stand-alone novels
Enchantress from the Stars
The Far Side of Evil
Journey Between Worlds


Nonfiction
The Planet-Girded Suns: The Long
History of Belief in Exoplanets

Reflections on the Future: Collected
Essays
(forthcoming)



Watch for news about my books and announcements of special promotions on my
Amazon Author Central Page and Facebook Author Page.





Stewards of the Flame and The Planet-Girded Suns are on the Awesome Indies list of quality independent fiction.





I welcome email!
See the CONTACT tab for my address.







Visionary Fiction Alliance






Children of the Star was selected as Book of the Week by BookWorks.





Entire site copyright 1997-2016 by Sylvia Engdahl (except where earlier text copyright indicated).
Last updated August 15, 2017
Approximate number of visitors since July 1, 2000