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Reboots Aren't Just For Batman Any More

Illustration for article titled Reboots Arent Just For Batman Any More

The modern fashion for rebooting heroes has reached the book world. John Scalzi, the writer who knows no fear, has taken H. Beam Piper's Hugo-nominated 1962 novel Little Fuzzy and reinventing it. And Tor Books will publish the result.


As Scalzi explains over on his blog,

I took the original plot and characters of Little Fuzzy and wrote an entirely new story from and with them. The novel doesn't follow on from the events of Little Fuzzy; it's a new interpretation of that first story and a break from the continuity that H. Beam Piper established in Little Fuzzy and its sequels... Science fiction TV and movie series are rebooted all the time - see Battlestar Galactica and Star Trek for recent examples of this - but I can't think of a significant, original universe in science fiction literature in which this has been done, at least, not by someone who is not the original author. So I thought, hey, this seems like it could be a fun thing to do. So I did it.


Adds Scalzi, Little Fuzzy is a "cracking good read" and he hopes his book, Fuzzy Nation, leads people to read it, rather than replacing it. He didn't start investigating the rights issues until he'd actually finished writing his own book, which he started just as a sort of exercise after another secret project went belly-up after a slew of agonizing negotiations. The original Fuzzy is in the public domain now, but the sequels are still under copyright, so Scalzi went to the trouble of getting Piper's estate's permission.

And it turns out Scalzi's efforts have borne fruit — he says Tor will tentatively be publishing Fuzzy Nation in about a year, give or take. Cover image by Jeff Zugale.

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Josh Wimmer

Goodness, I haven't been this outraged since Mike Young Productions took He-Man away from Filmation. Or since George Lucas discovered T.H. White and Thomas Malory. Or since Charles Perrault stole Little Red Riding Hood from the Grimm Brothers. I mean, what Scalzi is doing is simply unheard-of and unconscionable in the realm of storytelling.