Riverworld (universe)

From TheAlmightyGuru
Jump to: navigation, search
2010 Logo.

Riverworld is a fictional setting created by Philip José Farmer in the 1950s, though the first stories weren't published until the 1960s. In Riverworld, every person who has ever lived and died, from prehistoric cave men to the present day, is resurrected all at once onto a giant planet with a long winding river valley that covers the entire surface. Everyone is given a healthy new 25-years-old ageless body, and food and clothing is provided three times a day though machines. However, despite having all their needs met, people immediately begin warring with each other. The architects of this massive project try to keep themselves hidden, but occasionally information about their purposes are given in secret to select people. Several historical figures make up the heroes of the various books as they try to figure out what has actually happened.

After the core books had been published, the setting was opened to allow other authors a chance to write for it, and several short stories were written. Two pilots were made for two different series, but neither was picked up. The series has also been adapted to a video game and a pen and paper role-playing game.


Despite enjoying science fiction in my youth, I never heard of this book series growing up (probably because most sci-fi I consumed was from movies and TV shows). In my 30s, my friend Kelly loaned me a copy of the second book, The Fabulous Riverboat, which I read, and didn't hate. I later read the first book in the series, To Your Scattered Bodies Go, then re-read The Fabulous Riverboat, and moved onto The Dark Design. Although I love the setting of the books, and find the over arching quest to be interesting, I find the content to be dull at times, and, with most older science fiction, quite problematic as well.


Core Novels

Released Title Rating
1971-06-?? To Your Scattered Bodies Go Rating-7.svg
1971-06-?? The Fabulous Riverboat Rating-4.svg
1977-??-?? The Dark Design Rating-2.svg
1980-??-?? The Magic Labyrinth
1983-??-?? Gods of Riverworld

Additional Books and Stories

Released Title Notes
1971-??-?? Down in the Black Gang A short story of Jesus being resurrected in Riverworld.
1979-??-?? Riverworld and Other Stories An anthology of Farmer's short stories, including one based in Riverworld.
1983-11-?? River of Eternity Meant to be a re-telling of the original unpublished and lost Riverworld novel, Owe for the Flesh.
1992-??-?? Tales of Riverworld A collection of short stories set in Riverworld by a variety of authors.
1993-??-?? Quest to Riverworld A collection of short stories set in Riverworld by a variety of authors.


Released Title Notes
2001-??-?? Riverworld Pilot for a TV series that wasn't picked up.
2010-04-18 Riverworld Meant to be a 4-part miniseries, but cut down to 3 hours.


Released Title Notes
1989-??-?? GURPS Riverworld Pen-and-paper role-playing game setting.
1998-06-?? Riverworld Real-time strategy video game.



Link-Wikipedia.png  Link-TVTropes.png  Link-MobyGames.png