Neil Barron (1934-2010)

Locus recently learned of the death of editor and critic Neil Barron. He died September 5, 2010 in Las Vegas NV at age 76.

Barron is best known for editing Anatomy of Wonder, an essential critical/bibliographical/reference work on SF, first published in 1976 and expanded in four later editions, most recently in 2004. He also edited a number of other critical works on the genre. He founded and edited review magazine Science Fiction & Fantasy Book Review from 1979-80, and continued to work on the publication in its various incarnations through 1985.

Richard Neil Barron was born March 23, 1934 in Hollywood CA, and earned a master’s degree in library science at the University of California, Berkeley. He received a Pilgrim Award from the Science Fiction Research Association for his contributions to SF criticism in 1982. Barron was predeceased by wife Carolyn Witsell (married 1978, died 2002).

According to his friend Robert Reginald, “After the publication of the Fifth Edition of Anatomy of Wonder, [Barron] retired from writing, cut his ties with those he had known previously, and dropped from sight. He was missed then, and will be even more missed now.”

Barron’s entry in The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction has more details.

See the February issue of Locus for a complete obituary.