From Publishers Weekly
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.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Henderson's People stories reached the peak of their popularity when they inspired the 1972 TV movie The People
, starring William Shatner. First composed in the 1950s and 1960s, the stories, including the previously unpublished "Michal Without," are here collected for the first time. For the uninitiated, the People are members of a race of humanlike, psychically gifted extraterrestrials who become stranded on Earth after their starship crashes during a space migration they refer to as the Crossing. Bound together by a series of vignettes about one human's encounter with the People, the 28 stories chronicle the People's adventures from the crash to their settlement in rural Arizona and their problems using their levitational and mind-reading skills in human society while seeking a new planet to replace the home they left behind. These tales may seem mawkish and dated by today's more sophisticated sf standards, yet they retain their raw emotional power thanks to Henderson's masterfully lucid prose. They will always occupy an important place in sf history for their treatment of parapsychological themes. Carl Hays