Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Philip Jose Farmer  

Pen Name: Kilgore Trout, Jonathan Swift Somers III, Cordwainer Bird

Genre: Fiction Mystery Non-Fiction Science_Fiction

Audience: Adult;

Born: 1918 in North Terre Haute, Indiana

Died: 2009 in North Peoria, Illinois

-- Philip Jose Farmer on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Farmer moved to Peoria when he was four years old. He grew up there and attended Peoria High School. In 1950, he earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Bradley University. After 17 years of traveling as a technical writer for the space industry, he moved back to Peoria in the early 70's.

Biographical and Professional Information

Philip Jose Farmer was an author, principally known for his award-winning science fiction and fantasy novels and short stories. While he is best known for his Riverworld series and World of Tiers series, from 1946–2008 Farmer published almost 60 novels, over 100 short stories and novellas, two “fictional biographies” and numerous essays and articles.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

Doc Savage: His Apocalyptic Life
ISBN: 0872168549

Berkley Pub Group. 1981

Provides a biographical study of Lester Dent's heroic character who crusaded against crime and evil

Red Orc's Rage (World of Tiers)
ISBN: 0812508904

Tor Books. 1992

While undergoing "Tiersian" therapy, Jim physically goes to the World of Tiers, experiencing exciting and disturbing adventures and occupying the fantastic mind of the Red Orc

Stations of the Nightmare
ISBN: 0812537734

Tor Books. 1988

Book by Farmer, Philip Jose

The Caterpillar's Question
ISBN: 0441002137

Ace. 1995

A struggling art student on a distant world, trapped in the middle of an intergalactic battle against a tyrannical empire, looks for his salvation in an immortal, immensely powerful spirit called The Imago. Reprint.

More Than Fire: A World of Tiers Novel
ISBN: 0312852800

Tor Books. 1993

Philip Jose Farmer is one of the living giants of the science fiction genre. His first published story, "The Lovers" (1952), won him the Hugo Award for Best New Writer and launched one of the most important careers in the history of the field. Perhaps the Riverworld novels and stories are the best known of his more than 90 books. Certainly next in rank of popularity has been his World of Tiers series.
Beginning in the 1960s with The Maker Of Universes, and continuing in The Gates Of Creation, A Private Cosmos, Behind The Walls Of Terra, and The Lavalite World, Kickaha, an Earthman travels, fights, loves his way across the pocket universes. He is the implacable enemy of the decadent and arrogant Lords, a combatant who could have stepped out of the pages of Joseph Campbell's The Hero With A Thousand Faces. And Kickaha's greatest and most deadly foe is the Lord, Red Orc.
Now, in More Than Fire, Farmer concludes this epic series with the ultimate battle between Kickaha and Red Orc, with the entire existence of the pocket universes at stake. The long-awaited climax of one of the most popular and long-running adventure series in the history of science fiction is a colorful, complex, bloodthirsty, sexy explosion. The fast-paced story spans many worlds of wonders, reveals many secrets of the history of the World of Tiers, and ends with a shout of victory.

Nothing Burns in Hell
ISBN: 0812564952

Tor Books. 1999

This one is for fans of Quentin Tarantino and of the ever-present gratuitous violence of Robert Altman. It is a direct descendant of Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer and the mystery action pulps epitomized by Black Mask. Philip Jos Farmer, now one of the great living SF writers, who has published many varieties of pulp fiction, who has written novels of Tarzan, Doc Savage, and Oz, now turns his hand to the detective novel, with colorful, violent results.

A self-obsessed private detective married to a sincere wiccan is hired to witness an illegal transfer of money in a rainy cemetery that goes bloody wrong. Chasing the bad guys, he ends up the prisoner of a grusome threesome in their Dogpatchy cabin in the woods. His escape involves nudity, blood, death, and a terrible snapping turtle.

That's how the mystery begins, leading him through all the levels of Peoria society, geography, and history. Absurdly funny things happen continually in the peripheral vision of the story. No violence is left out. Greed, venality and hatred are unleashed. Unpleasant family history is brought to light. All the sex is offstage. The body count mounts steadily, with occasional mutilations. Nothing Burns in Hell is pulp fiction at its most gorgeously excessive.

To Your Scattered Bodies Go (Riverworld Saga, Book 1)
ISBN: 0345419677

Del Rey. 1998

All those who ever lived on Earth have found themselves resurrected--healthy, young, and naked as newborns--on the grassy banks of a mighty river, in a world unknown. Miraculously provided with food, but with no clues to the meaning of their strange new afterlife, billions of people from every period of Earth's history--and prehistory--must start again.

Sir Richard Francis Burton would be the first to glimpse the incredible way-station, a link between worlds. This forbidden sight would spur the renowned 19th-century explorer to uncover the truth. Along with a remarkable group of compatriots, including Alice Liddell Hargreaves (the Victorian girl who was the inspiration for Alice in Wonderland), an English-speaking Neanderthal, a WWII Holocaust survivor, and a wise extraterrestrial, Burton sets sail on the magnificent river. His mission: to confront humankind's mysterious benefactors, and learn the true purpose--innocent or evil--of the Riverworld . . .

Image of the Beast
ISBN: 1902197240

Creation. 2007

Award-winning author Philip José Farmer’s 1960s Science Fiction porn epic. Comprising The Image Of The Beast – An Exorcism, Ritual One, and Blown – An Exorcism, Ritual Two. This mind-blowing classic conjures a universe of unrelenting sexual degradation and horror. Private dick Herald Childe is sent a snuff movie of his partner being hideously murdered. His pursuit of the killers leads him into a waking nightmare of sexual brutality and supernatural bestiality, as he becomes entangled with sex-starved she-ghosts, libidinous snake-women, a filthy human sow, and a she-creature who gives birth to an ectoplasmic simulacrum of Satanic child-killer Gilles de Rais.

Strange Relations
ISBN: 1416555269

Baen. 2008

Two complete novels and five novelettes that broke new ground in science fiction and established Philip Jose Farmer as a master of the genre:

The Lovers: One of the most controversial and groundbreaking novels in science fiction. Sent by the religious tyranny of a future Earth to the planet Ozagen, Hal Yarrow met Jeanette, an apparently human fugitive, hiding in ancient ruins built by a long-vanished race. Unconsecrated contact with any female was forbidden to Yarrow—and love for an alien female was an unspeakable abomination. But Yarrow’s lifelong conditioning was no match for his strange attraction to Jeanette.

Flesh: The starship captain had been on a voyage lasting 800 years, and returned to find an Earth ruled by revived ancient pagan rituals. He was crowned the “Sunhero,” which was a very dubious honor . . . and unless he could escape, he would be the guest of honor at a fertility rite which would conclude with his very unpleasant death.

Strange Relations: Five novelettes of unbounded imagination telling of strange—and often deadly—encounters between human and alien.


The Lovers

  • Hugo Award for Most Promising New Talent, 1953
  • Riders of the Purple Wage

  • Hugo Award for Best Novella, 1968
  • To Your Scattered Bodies Go

  • Hugo for Best Novel, 1972 Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award, Lifetime Achievement, 2000 World Fantasy Award, Life Achievement, 2001 Forry Award, Lifetime Achievement, 2003