cover image Ingathering: The Complete People Stories of Zenna Henderson

Ingathering: The Complete People Stories of Zenna Henderson

Zenna Henderson. Nesfa Press, $25 (577pp) ISBN 978-0-915368-58-7

The People, the best-known creations of the late SF writer Henderson, are humanoid refugees who have landed in 19th-century America after the destruction of their own planet. Their abilities--telepathy, levitation and other apparently magic talents--help them survive, yet mark them as different. This useful and enjoyable collection reprints all of the People stories, including four that didn't appear in Henderson's two People books (Pilgrimage: The Book of The People; The People: No Different Flesh) and one that is new to print. One of the few female writers during SF's earlier years, Henderson provides a warm, emotional voice, prefeminist yet independent, examining issues of identity, loneliness, nostalgia and caring. The People stories, written between 1952 and 1975, also present a strong regional sensibility, depicting a rural Southwest as alien and charming as the People's own planet. Some may find these stories too sentimental, but their emotional integrity and deeply moral core will--as Priscilla Olson's too-short introduction points out--please many. (June)