ROCKVILLE, Md., Nov. 7, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Most fans of Robert A. Heinlein know of The Number of the Beast and that it deals with parallel universes. What most do not realize is that The Number of the Beast was only one of two books he wrote about these parallel universes, although it was the only one published. No one is exactly sure why the other text didn't get published, although there have been many theories.
A recent examination of the fragments of this parallel text that survived (along with Heinlein's handwritten notes) made it clear that the fragments, if put together properly, constituted the complete unpublished book. It has taken Arc Manor about three years to put these pieces together and deal with certain other issues, but the book is now ready for publication.
Robert A. Heinlein's The Pursuit of the Pankera will be published on March 24, 2020.
It is very fortunate that the complete manuscript was discovered and that the new book is entirely Heinlein. No additional author was asked to provide "fillers." The book is going through a rigorous editing process, as would any new title being published, but other than that, it is as Heinlein left it.
Students of science fiction and keen fans of Heinlein have known about the unpublished text, often referring to it as the "alternate" text to The Number of the Beast. This has led to speculation that the new book is simply a variant of the published book. It is, in fact, a totally different book.
The two books do share a common beginning (approximately one-third of the book), but then the plot diverges completely. Arc Manor has created a side-by-side evaluation of the two books showing the divergence. The point where the books take a different path is clearly marked, and readers and fans can judge for themselves just how similar or different the two parallel texts are from the two chapters included in the comparison.
This is a fascinating experiment by one of the most innovative writers in science fiction, writing two parallel texts that diverge after a common beginning into two entirely different storylines dealing with parallel universes. In books that deal with fictional worlds becoming reality, here are two narratives that could have existed on two parallel Earths.
The side by side comparison of the unedited manuscript can be accessed at: ArcManorBooks.com/pursuit
Sign-up for more information on the project at: ArcManorBooks.com/heinlein
Media interviews on the subject may be arranged by contacting the publisher directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
SOURCE Arc Manor LLC