It was a sultry summer day in 1981, and the 3 billion or so inhabitants of the world went about their daily routine unaware that, possibly, the fate of the human race lay in the shaking hands of one George Mercer, an insignificant and slightly neurotic employee of the New York City Department of Welfare. For George had been informed, by an accredited emissary of the Galactic Overlords, that he had 12 hours in which to prove the people of the Earth worthy of admission into the Galactic Federation. George, and George alone, would represent all of mankind. If he failed the entire planet would be destroyed. Was this all a nightmare of delusions dredged up by his tortured subconscious? Or a very real nightmare that would end in the Day of the Burning . . .
Earth and Firma were twin planets – mirror worlds in a single time-track. Now Firma was halted in its rotation around the sun by the Aliens. Unless Denning and Liston, twin humans, could destroy the Aliens and get Firma moving again, Earth would some day repeat Firma’s tragedy and be burned to a cinder. The Aliens had an incredible array of weapons at their disposal. Denning and Liston had only their courage and their brains.
He held the power of life after the world’s end! In four days the world was coming to an end! The exploding sun would burn every living thing on Earth to a cinder! In Simsville, it was Bill Easson who got the job of picking those fit to escape. He had to choose ten people – men, women, or children – out of its desperate, hysterical three thousand. Whom should he pick – the beautiful, the bold, or the clever? Did they really have a chance to reach a new world in the rickety, jerry-built, inadequate space boat that would be given them? Would cold and hostile Mars welcome them?
Marooned on the planet Quetzalia after their ship clashed with the irresistable force of gravity, Day One In Paradise is not quite the blissful Utopia fact-finding Nearthlings Francis Lostwax and Burne Newman were expecting. Tropical fronds turn out to be brain-eating Neurovores who decimate the rest of the scientists’ crew, and a sweeping, majestic river becomes a bubbling cauldron of caustic ‘noctus’ or liquified hate. Abandoning their craft, the two scientists flee to the Quetzalians, a peace-loving race guided by the precepts of the Ancient Mexicans. Together they vow to rid the planet of the evil Neurovores. But the technology-free Quetzalians demand that the Nearthlings destroy their machines and with them their lifeline back to the planet New Earth…
Keston Ochiltree’s visit home had been short and disastrous. His newborn nephew had proved to be one of the Hopeless Ones and had only served to remind him of the present plight of mankind. Keston knew that the decision he was being called on to make might mean a new start for humanity or the end of their underwater civilization. Each day found more Hopeless Ones being born: pitiful creatures with webbed hands and feet. More important, the inhuman Zammu were pressing their attack in a fierce struggle between species. Most important, the silver sky was lowering. The shimmering sky-level would soon shrink until they had all burned in the gaseous beyond. So Keston’s decision might mean everything. Should he stay in the Emperor’s shark-cavalry to fight the Zammu? Or should he join Professor Lansing in an illegal attempt to find what lay beyond the silver sky?
Fifteen billion years from now, Earth is a dying planet, its skies darkened by the ashes of burned-out galaxies, its molten core long cooled. The sunless planet is nearing the day of final gravitational collapse in the surrounding galaxy. Mutations and evolution have led to a great disparity of life-forms, while civilization has resorted to the primitive. Young Deyv of the Turtle Tribe knew nothing of his world’s history or its fate. He lived only to track down the wretched Yawtl who had stolen his precious Soul Egg. Joined by other victims of the same thief – the feisty Vana and the plant-man Sloosh – the group sets off across a nightmare landscape of monster-haunted jungle and wetland. Their search leads them ultimately to the jeweled wasteland of the Shemibob, an ageless being from another star who knows Earth’s end is near and holds the only key to escape.