For almost two centuries the huge spaceship had speared its way through the stars, bound for another two hundred years of travel before it would put down on a new planet, a new home for the Earth people.
On board the metal-enclosed worldlet were four hundred people: the last survivors of Earth. It was up to them to start life anew, to correct the mistakes their ancestors made.
But as the tenth generation neared maturity, the idle passengers found themselves face to face with these same problems – and this time there was no place to run and hide or to postpone their answers. For their miniature society was changing faster and faster. An the spaceship suddenly seemed destined to end as a star-bound coffin.
A brilliant collection of original stories.
A predatory alien accidentally teleported to Earth.
A mad scientist and his imprisoned ghost.
A space traveller returns to face an accusation of murder.
Classic police procedural by a ‘born storyteller’ (Sunday Times), who combined natural flair with his experience in the police to truly authentic effect.
There was an extra body in the morgue – a body stripped of all identification and with its face badly battered. But when Inspector Martineau was called to the scene he had a pretty good idea whose it was.
That was, however, just the beginning. A big payroll robbery, a group of out-of-town mobsters and some odd behaviour in a local night spot all attract Inspector Martineau’s attention. While, at a funeral parlour, the quick are considerably more active and dangerous a problem than the dead.
Beautiful Nell Varney was a newcomer to Contera – and to murder.
Suddenly she found herself in a strange courtroom faced with seven pairs of hate-ridden, accusing eyes. Seven witnesses had identified her as the murderer who had caused the death of two women by performing illegal abortions.
Why would anyone in this strange town believe Nell was innocent? Could anyone help her? One man, a dedicated lawyer named Jesse Falkenstein, was determined to try . . .
‘My favourite American crime-writer’ New York Herald Tribune
The Terran Empire was faced with disaster. A turmoil of unrest on the planet Diomedes was the first spark that threatened to ignite a chain reaction of insurrection. All the attention of the ruling powers was centred on Diomedes – but Sir Dominic Flandry, bon vivant and interstellar troubleshooter, was one jump ahead. Through a highly unorthodox gambit, Flandry had learned that the Diomedean troubles were a red herring masking the real location of a deadly plan for a galactic civil war that would crush the Empire out of existence.
Time was running out. Only Flandry had the knowledge that could prevent devastation. And when the real trouble began, Flandry was half a universe away.
Kynance Foy was young, beautiful, intelligent an highly trained in both qua-space physics and business law when she left Earth to seek her fortune in the interstellar outworlds. But she found that the further she got from Earth, the tougher became the competition from the environment-hardened populations of these young worlds . . . and by the time she reached the planet Nefertiti, she was facing poverty.
Then, unexpectedly, a wonderful opportunity opened up for her: the job of Planetary Supervisor of the fabulously wealthy world called Zygra, where exotic pelts costing a million credits each were grown. The salary was huge, and at the end of the year’s tour of duty she would be transported free of charge back to Earth, where she would be a very wealthy young woman.
There had to be a catch to it, she thought as she signed the contract. And, of course, there was.
(First published 1966)
This is the culmination of the greatest adventure series in the history of science fiction.
With ‘A Stone in Heaven’ Poul Anderson has brought the career of Dominic Flandry full cycle. From the beginning Flandry has piece by piece mortgaged his soul that the long night of galactic barbarism might be held off just a little longer. Now, face to face with his personal long night, Flandry is offered one last chance for love and honour in a universe he has come to believe holds neither…
In the year 2794, the greatest civilisation in Earth’s history, ravaged by over-population and lack of food, faces almost certain destruction. A handful of men and women struggle desperately to avert the coming holocaust, but they seem doomed to failure. And even if they succeed, Earth will never be the same again . . .
Cornwall, Nebraska – 894 catatonic, 86 dead
Boland, California – 1200 blind
Berwick, Maine – 2100 severely mentally retarded
McKay, Maryland – 2300 with complete loss of memory
Small towns, each wiped out as surely as if bombed off the face of the earth.
The president’s announcement was simple: “My fellow Americans, the people of the United States are under attack. Terrorists are using germ warfare against us and we must take extraordinary enforcement measures. I will ask Congress to declare a state of national emergency…”
Adam Cape – a young barrister – prosecutes a case of assault at the Old Bailey. On the face of it, it’s a straightforward trial but its aftermath brings him uncomfortably close to death and Adam is unable to free himself from a murder that results.
With the best of motives, and the most unprofessional behavior, he becomes a bane to police; lands in hospital; is on hand when a bank robbery is averted – and, remarkably, bumbles into the truth of the case.
It’s 2026, and the Alpha Centauri supernova has risen like a second sun, rushing Earth toward its last summer. Floods, fires, starvation and disease paralyze the planet. A flash of gamma rays has destroyed all microchips worldwide, leaving an already devastated Earth without communications, transportation, weaponry or medicine.
The disaster sets three groups of survivors on separate quests. A militant cult seizes the opportunity to free their leader from her long court-mandated coma. Three cancer patients also search for a man in judicial sleep: the brilliant scientist – and monstrous criminal – who alone can continue the experimental treatment that keeps them alive. From a far greater distance come the survivors of the first manned Mars expedition, struggling homeward to a world that has changed far beyond their darkest fears. And standing at the crossroads is one man, U.S. President Saul Steinmetz, who faces a crucial decision that will affect the fate of his own people… and the world.
When suddenly all the fissionable material on Earth was exploded, Earthmen had their first notice of the aliens’ arrival.
And by the time the panic, death and chaos had been sorted out, reports were coming in about mysterious cities scattered across the face of the planet – huge areas of flickering light and awesome free energy, disorienting to human senses and impregnable to attack.
The question was: were they alien bases . . . or something else?
Lord Tedric of the Marshes, ex-Corpsman and interplanetary warrior, faces a crucial mission: to crush the threat of the Destructive Forces by capturing their agent on the Bioman sphere, the ruthless Black Knight Fra Villion
Tedric’s crew are bound together by the strong loyalty of outcasts: Yod Cartwright, ex-pirate; Juvi, a prostitute turned expert pilor; Ky-shan the exiled Wykzl; Wilson, the renegade robot; and Pal Galmain, brave but banished Knight of the noble order of Vemplars.
Tedric mjust warn the Bio,en that their castle is a gatewhile for the annihilation gathering in the grey depths of space, but who will believe the word of a barbarian against the lightning whipsword of Fra Villion?
Mystery writer Brendan Monroe is tormented by the fear that his flamboyant fictional detective P. I. Roy Barron has come to life. Is the author losing his mind? Or is someone making it seem that way?
When Barron is found dead, Sergeant Dan Valentine of the Santa Monica police focuses his investigation on the local chapter of the Mystery Writers of America, where he faces the fascinating challenge of trying to trap a murderer whose profession is devising diabolical plots.
‘My favourite American crime-writer’ New York Herald Tribune
“When Kinsolving’s Planet crosses your path, beware!”
Commodore John Grimes would have done well to heed this warning. But the evil magic of Kinsolving draws him on, pulling him on a journey through the universes. Is Grimes a swiftly facing literary ghost, doomed to disappearance for the inadvertent theft of a meerschaum pipe? Or, is he a flesh and blood Commodore, sailing the spaceways from world to world, enjoying dangerous voyages to momentary safe ports?
It does not matter what role is the “true” John Grimes for none can protect him from the grasp of Kinsolving’s Planet, an abandoned colony which reaches out for man, for the target, John Grimes, who is inexorably sucked toward his final destiny …