Oles Berdnyk (1926-2003) is one of the fathers of the Ukrainian science fiction, and although his career was regularly interrupted by Soviet authorities – Berdnyk was sent three times to camp or prison for his political ideas – his work, addressing various genres and themes, is abundant and has a real masterpiece, The Star Corsair (Зоряний корсар, 1971).
Despite this, he is little known in the West, some short stories, often summarized, have been translated into French or English in the 80s, but only in little-known publishers. Most recently, three novels, two combined into one volume, were published in English in Canada at Language Lanterns Publishing (Toronto).
The first of them is Prometheus (Лабіринт Мінотавра, 1972-1984), a story which happens at the end of antiquity, and which heroine is the famous heroine Hypatia, describing her travels in Greece, India and North Africa.
The second book, entitled Fantastic Encounters, contains the novels The Eye Flower (Окоцвіт, 1969) and The Illusionist (Ілюзіоніст, 1975). The Illusionist had been previously published only in French, but in a considerable summary form in the collection La Confrérie étoilée (Montreal, Canada, 1985).
It is needless to say that for English-speaking readers, this is very good news.
Publisher’s website :
Official Oles Berdnyk site (in Ukrainian):