At high-pressure chemical plants in the United States and Germany, the race to process a new wonder chemical is on. The stakes are high – and the competition is reckless, desperate and fierce. Trialine. Wonder Drug. If synthesized, its possibilities are endless. Fabulous. It will revolutionise the 21st century. And it will make somebody famous. And somebody very, very rich. But the key to the process is held by somebody who doesn’t know it. Somebody who will be transformed forever. Somebody who is destined to be… The Catalyst.
The planet Mercury. Forty million miles from the Sun, following his eccentric orbit, one side of him solid with the frost of untold cycles of time, the other molten whereon metals boiled and sizzled in the incredible heat of the sun. A world utterly dead, a terror-planet, but such is the spirit of adventure in Man that even here he was exploring…
The galaxy is at war, a war between the oxygen-breathing Terran Federation of worlds and the Ginzoes, chlorine-breathing aliens. Neither side dare attack the others’ habitable worlds for fear of reprisals: the war has become a matter of spaceships firing on each other as they emerge from hyperspace. An Earth ship is captured in battle by the Ginzoes, and its surviving crew learn that the aliens have gained possession of a newly-developed catalyst. If dropped into the oceans of oxygen planets the catalyst can liberate the chlorine from the sea and convert them to chlorine worlds suitable for the Ginzoes. The catalyst will be used unless the Terran Federation declares peace within fifty days. Fifty days to save Mankind . . . or fifty days to doom!
Bron is a chaos catalyst. He wreaks havoc and destruction as surely as a hurricane wherever he goes. Commando Central has planted an electrode transmitter-receiver deep inside his brain and infiltrated him into the Destroyer Spacefleet to prevent it from gaining absolute mastery of the galaxy. But Bron’s own brand of chaos is lethally unpredictable. And when whole planets are annihilated by monster hellburner bombs set on course seven hundred million years ago from distant Andromeda, aimed directly at Bron himself, both sides realise something more colossal, more threatening and infinitely more powerful is taking a hand in Bron’s weird destiny . . .
The Duke of Atreides has been manoeuvred by his arch-enemy, Baron Harkonnen, into administering the desert planet of Dune. Although it is almost completely without water, Dune is a planet of fabulous wealth, for it is the only source of a drug prized throughout the Galactic Empire. The Duke and his son, Paul, are expecting treachery, and it duly comes – but from a shockingly unexpected place. Then Paul succeeds his father, and he becomes a catalyst for the native people of Dune, whose knowledge of the ecology of the planet gives them vast power. They have been waiting for a leader like Paul Atreides, a leader who can harness that force … DUNE: one of the most brilliant science fiction novels ever written, as engrossing and heart-rending today as it was when it was first published half a century ago. Joint winner of the HUGO AWARD for best novel, 1966 Winner of the NEBULA AWARD for best novel, 1965
Written in the late 1950s but unpublished until after his death, this is one of Dick’s greatest realistic novels When Roger and Virginia Lindhal enroll their son Gregg in Mrs Alt’s Los Padres Valley School in the mountains of Southern California, their marriage is already in deep trouble. Then the Lindhals meet Chic and Liz Bonner, whose two sons also board at Mrs Alt’s school. The meeting is a catalyst for a complicated series of emotions and traumas, set against the backdrop of suburban Los Angeles in the early 1950s. As Roger, Virginia, Chic and Liz orbit each other in ever-decaying circles, their lives threaten to run out of control. This is a realistic novel filled with details of everyday life and skilfully told from three points of view. It is powerful, eloquent, and gripping. Winner of both the HUGO and JOHN W. CAMPBELL AWARDs for BEST NOVEL, Philip K. Dick is widely regarded as the premiere science fiction writer of his day. The object of cult-like adoration from his legions of fans, Philip K. Dick has come to be seen in a literary light that defies classification in much the same way as Borges and Calvino. With breathtaking insight, he utilizes vividly unfamiliar worlds to evoke the hauntingly and hilariously familiar in our society and ourselves.