Way back in May, we were so struck by an assertion in John Clute's introduction to Christopher Priest's Inverted World that it seemed like a good thing to quote here. Problem was—the book wasn't available for a couple more months. Brilliant solution—write up the post and set it to go public when we had finished copies of the book. And here's where the plan went terribly awry. We accidentally published the post, which made it look like the book was indeed available. But who reads this blog anyway? In the five minutes the post was on the front page of the site, someone had sent it to the author (who was justly concerned that the book was on sale before he had approved the text) and it had been picked up by the science fiction blog spun off from Gawker, io9. What followed was a lively debate (sixty-odd coments and counting) about the definition of "hard" science fiction. Things got much nastier than we're used to around here.