READE, Philip


READE, Philip
   Pseudonym of an unidentified US writer of dime novels (DIME-NOVEL SF) whose work appeared in STREET \& SMITH's Good News and The Nugget Library in competition to Tousey's Frank Reade, Jr. stories (FRANK READE LIBRARY). PR wrote 9 stories about Tom Edison, Jr., no relation to theinventor (Hyperlink to: EDISONADE); unusual in being plotted (instead of haphazard) in terms of character conflicts, they are the best of the various invention series, containing as well an element of tongue-in-cheek and fantasy. Tom Edison, Jr.'s Sky-Scraping Trip (1891), Tom Edison, Jr.'s Sky Courser (1891), Tom Edison, Jr.'s Prairie-Skimmer Team (1891) and TomEdison, Jr.'s Air Frigate (1891) together form an episodic novel describing the scientific feud between Tom and his rogue cousin. The stories are filled with fantastic aircraft, individual flying suits, advanced weapons and air battles. PR's most important story is Tom Edison, Jr.'s Electric Sea Spider (1892), in which Tom combats the US-educatedChinese mastermind of sea crime, Kiang-Ho of the Golden Belt. The story culminates in an underwater battle between two fantastic submarine vessels. This perhaps marks the first appeareance of a FU MANCHU-like villain.Tom Edison, Jr. stories \#10 and \#11, Tom Edison, Jr.'s Air-Ship in Australia (1892) and Tom Edison, Jr.'s Electric Eagle (1892), werewritten, on a much lower level, by Henry Livingston Williams (1842-?), a prolific hack editor and author.
   EFB

Science Fiction and Fantasy Encyclopedia. . 2011.

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