The Iron Man

by Louis-Sébastien Mercier
adapted by Brian Stableford

cover by Phil Cohen

A being whose grandeur and majesty were above the human, clad in an azure robe, crowned with amaranth, said to me: “You have the strength; travel the world. You are justice personified; act. I have endowed you with all that is necessary to exercise august functions.”

US$ 20.95/GBP 12.99
5x8 tpb, 256 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1-61227-759-2
The Iron Man is a fascinating cross-section of the works of Louis-Sébastien Mercier (1740-1814), a unique writer whose originality and enterprise has never yet been given the full credit that it deserves.

From an early contribution to the development of the literary vampire to a pair of revealing philosophical spectacles, from a world that seems to be the best of all possible worlds to interplanetary voyages, and the eponymous “Iron Man,” a precursor of superhero fiction, many of Mercier’s visionary fantasies are still fresh and original today, his exploratory zest not having been weighed down by the burden of subsequent sophistication.

We can best appreciate the full effect of the liberation that the device of dreaming gave to his literary imagination, turning him into a genuine precursor of surrealism who created a number of what were to become conventional tropes of supernatural fiction in original ways.

Contents: [from Songes Philosophiques, 1768]
The Soul
Cupidity and Virtue
The Lunettes
A Fortunate World
Dreams of a Hermit
The Iron Man
The Last Day
The Towers
News from the Moon
I Am Dead
Introduction and Notes by Brian Stableford.