The Blind Spot

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Not to be confused with either the 1932 film or the 2003 film titled The Blind Spot.
The Blind Spot
Blind spot.jpg
Dust-jacket from the first edition
Author Austin Hall and Homer Eon Flint
Illustrator Hannes Bok
Cover artist Hannes Bok
Country United States
Language English
Genre Science fiction novel
Publisher Prime Press
Publication date
1951
Media type Print (Hardback)
Pages 293 pp
ISBN NA
OCLC 7329780
Followed by The Spot of Life

The Blind Spot is a science fiction novel by authors Austin Hall and Homer Eon Flint. The novel was originally serialized in six parts in the magazine Argosy beginning in May 1921. It was first published in book form in 1951 by Prime Press in an edition of 1,500 copies, though fewer than 800 were bound and the remainder are assumed lost. The sequel, The Spot of Life, was written by Hall alone.

Plot introduction[edit]

The novel concerns an interdimensional doorway between worlds.

Notable Phrase[edit]

Chapter 35 of the book contains the phrase:

“Tell me," commanded Chick. "What is this Day of which you speak!”

This is the first known usage of what has become a popular meme: "what is this X of which you speak".

Critical response[edit]

In In Search of Wonder, Damon Knight is critical of the novel's coherence, scientific accuracy and style:[1]

The Blind Spot, by Austin Hall and Homer Eon Flint, is an acknowledged classic of fantasy, first published in 1921; much praised since then, several times reprinted, venerated by connoisseurs - all despite the fact that the book has no recognizable vestige of merit.

Groff Conklin, however, more generously termed The Blind Spot an "honored classic" despite being "overwritten [and] leaning a little heavily on the pseudo-metaphysical."[2] Forrest J Ackerman described it in Astounding as a "luxuriantly glorious Merrittesque [fantasy] of dimensional interstices" and "a highly philosophical work."[3]

Everett F. Bleiler wrote that The Blind Spot"used to be regarded as one of the classics of early science-fiction, but now it is much less esteemed." He concluded that while its opening section "evoke[s] a considerable sense of wonder," the novel "soon degenerates into a routine adventure story with loose ends."[4]

Publication history[edit]

  • 1921, USA, Argosy, Pub date May 1921, magazine serialization in 6 parts
  • 1940, USA, Famous Fantastic Mysteries, Pub date March 1940, magazine serialization in 3 parts
  • 1940, USA, Fantastic Novels, Pub date July 1940, magazine
  • 1950, USA, Prime Press OCLC 7329780, Pub date 1951, Hardback, first book publication
  • 1953, UK, Museum OCLC 222434536, Pub date 1953, Hardback
  • 1964, USA, Ace Books OCLC 7326942, Pub date 1964, Paperback

References[edit]

  1. ^ Knight, Damon (1967). In Search of Wonder. Chicago: Advent. 
  2. ^ "Galaxy's 5 Star Shelf," Galaxy Science Fiction, January 1952, p.119.
  3. ^ "Book Reviews", Astounding Science Fiction, September 1951, p.124
  4. ^ Everett F. Bleiler, Science-Fiction: The Early Years, Kent State University Press, 1990, p.328