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The Star Diaries

Ijon Tichy: Book 1

Stanislaw Lem

Ijon Tichy, Lem's Candide of the Cosmos, encounters bizarre civilizations and creatures in space that serve to satirize science, the rational mind, theology, and other icons of human pride. Line drawings by the Author.

Hawk

Vlad Taltos: Book 14

Steven Brust

Years ago, Vlad Taltos came to make his way as a human amidst the impossibly tall, fantastically long-lived natives of the Dragaeran Empire. He joined the Jhereg, the Dragaeran House (of which there are seventeen) that handles the Empire's vices: gambling, rackets, organized crime. He became a professional assassin. He was good at it.

But that was then, before Vlad and the Jhereg became mortal enemies.

For years, Vlad has run from one end of the Empire to the other, avoiding the Jhereg assassins who pursue him. Now, finally, he's back in the imperial capital where his family and friends are. He means to stay there this time. Whatever happens. And whatever it takes.

Wikihistory

Desmond Warzel

This short story originally appeared in Abyss & Apex #24, Fourth Quarter 2007.

International Association of Time Travelers: Members' Forum
Subforum: Europe--Twentieth Century--Second World War Page 263

Read the full story for free at Abyss & Apex or Tor.com.

Monday Begins on Saturday

Arkady Strugatsky
Boris Strugatsky

When young programmer Aleksandr Ivanovich Privalov picks up two hitchhikers while driving in Karelia, he is drawn into the mysterious world of the Scientific Research Institute of Sorcery and Wizardry, where research into magic is serious business. Where science, sorcery and socialism meet, can chaos be far behind?

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Book 1

Douglas Adams

Join Douglas Adams's hapless hero Arthur Dent as he travels the galaxy with his intrepid pal Ford Prefect, getting into horrible messes and generally wreaking hilarious havoc. Dent is grabbed from Earth moments before a cosmic construction team obliterates the planet to build a freeway. You'll never read funnier science fiction; Adams is a master of intelligent satire, barbed wit, and comedic dialogue. The Hitchhiker's Guide is rich in comedic detail and thought-provoking situations and stands up to multiple reads. Required reading for science fiction fans, this book (and its follow-ups) is also sure to please fans of Monty Python, Terry Pratchett's Discworld series, and British sitcoms.

The Cyberiad

Stanislaw Lem

Trurl and Klaupacius are constructor robots who try to out-invent each other. They travel to the far corners of the cosmos to take on freelance problem-solving jobs, with dire consequences for their employers.

The Futurological Congress: From the Memoirs of Ijon Tichy

Ijon Tichy

Stanislaw Lem

Bringing his twin gifts of scientific speculation and scathing satire to bear on that hapless planet, Earth, Lem sends his unlucky cosmonaut, Ijon Tichy, to the Eighth Futurological Congress. Caught up in local revolution, Tichy is shot and so critically wounded that he is flashfrozen to await a future cure. Translated by Michael Kandel.

Psychoshop

Alfred Bester
Roger Zelazny

Half finished upon Bester's death, and completed by Zelazny, "Psychoshop" envisions a commercial establishment that attracts customers ranging from Edgar Allan Poe to a sorcerer intent on fabricating the Beast of Revelations.

Bridge of Birds: A Novel of an Ancient China That Never Was

Master Li: Book 1

Barry Hughart

When the children of his village were struck with a mysterious illness, Number Ten Ox found master Li Kao. Together they set out to find the Great Root of Power, the only possible cure, and together they discover adventure and legend, and the power of belief....

Nightfall and Other Stories

Nightfall: Book 1

Isaac Asimov

Table of Contents:

  • What Is This Thing Called Love? - (1961)
  • Strikebreaker - (1957)
  • Sally - (1953)
  • Nightfall - (1941)
  • Segregationist - (1967)
  • Eyes Do More Than See - (1965)
  • Green Patches - (1950)
  • Hostess - (1951)
  • Breeds There a Man...? - (1951)
  • Flies - (1953)
  • The Up-to-Date Sorcerer - (1958)
  • Unto the Fourth Generation - (1959)
  • The Machine That Won the War - (1961)
  • My Son, the Physicist! - (1962)
  • It's Such a Beautiful Day - (1955)
  • Insert Knob A in Hole B - (1957)
  • "In a Good Cause--" - (1951)
  • The C-Chute - (1951)
  • Biographical Comments in "Nightfall and Other Stories" - essay by Isaac Asimov
  • "Nobody Here But--" - (1953)
  • What If-- - (1952)

Snow Crash

Neal Stephenson

Only once in a great while does a writer come along who defies comparison--a writer so original he redefines the way we look at the world. Neal Stephenson is such a writer and Snow Crash is such a novel, weaving virtual reality, Sumerian myth, and just about everything in between with a cool, hip cybersensibility to bring us the gigathriller of the information age.

In reality, Hiro Protagonist delivers pizza for Uncle Enzo's CosaNostra Pizza Inc., but in the Metaverse he's a warrior prince. Plunging headlong into the enigma of a new computer virus that's striking down hackers everywhere, he races along the neon-lit streets on a search-and-destroy mission for the shadowy virtual villain threatening to bring about Infocalypse. Snow Crash is a mind-altering romp through a future America so bizarre, so outrageous...you'll recognize it immediately.

Digger, Vol 1

Digger: Book 1

Ursula Vernon

Digger is a story about a wombat. More specifically, it is a story about a particularly no-nonsense wombat who finds herself stuck on the wrong end of a one-way tunnel in a strange land where nonsense seems to be the specialty. Now with the help of a talking statue of a god, an outcast hyena, a shadow-being of indeterminate origin, and an oracular slug she seeks to find out where she is and how to go about getting back to her Warren.

With an irreverent sense of humor and a fantasy protagonist with a healthy dose of skepticism, Digger rapidly gained a huge following of devoted fans eager for the twice a week updates of the webcomic. This volume collects the first two chapters of the story, along with an all-new six page comic revealing the origin of the talking statue of Ganesh. Digger has long received acclaim from fellow artists and webcomic critics.

Sorcery and Cecelia or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot

Kate and Cecelia: Book 1

Patricia C. Wrede
Caroline Stevermer

Two girls contend with sorcery in England's Regency age

Since they were children, cousins Kate and Cecelia have been inseparable. But in 1817, as they approach adulthood, their families force them to spend a summer apart. As Cecelia fights boredom in her small country town, Kate visits London to mingle with the brightest lights of English society.

At the initiation of a powerful magician into the Royal College of Wizards, Kate finds herself alone with a mysterious witch who offers her a sip from a chocolate pot. When Kate refuses the drink, the chocolate burns through her dress and the witch disappears. It seems that strange forces are convening to destroy a beloved wizard, and only Kate and Cecelia can stop the plot. But for two girls who have to contend with the pressures of choosing dresses and beaux for their debuts, deadly magic is only one of their concerns.

The Illuminatus! Trilogy

Illuminatus! Trilogy

Robert Shea
Robert Anton Wilson

Filled with sex and violence--in and out of time and space--the three books of The Illuminatus are only partly works of the imagination. They tackle all the coverups of our time--from who really shot the Kennedys to why there's a pyramid on a one-dollar bill.

Making Money

Discworld: Book 36

Terry Pratchett

The Ankh-Morpork Post Office is running like... well, not at all like a government office. The mail is delivered promptly; meetings start and end on time; five out of six letters relegated to the Blind Letter Office ultimately wend their way to the correct addresses. Postmaster General Moist von Lipwig, former arch-swindler and confidence man, has exceeded all expectations-including his own. So it's somewhat disconcerting when Lord Vetinari summons Moist to the palace and asks, "Tell me, Mr. Lipwig, would you like to make some real money?"

Vetinari isn't talking about wages, of course. He's referring, rather, to the Royal Mint of Ankh-Morpork, a venerable institution that haas run for centuries on the hereditary employment of the Men of the Sheds and their loyal outworkers, who do make money in their spare time. Unfortunately, it costs more than a penny to make a penny, so the whole process seems somewhat counterintuitive.

Next door, at the Royal Bank, the Glooper, an "analogy machine," has scientifically established that one never has quite as much money at the end of the week as one thinks one should, and the bank's chairman, one elderly Topsy (ne Turvy) Lavish, keeps two loaded crossbows at her desk. Oh, and the chief clerk is probably a vampire.

But before Moist has time to fully consider Vetinari's question, fate answers it for him. Now he's not only making money, but enemies too; he's got to spring a prisoner from jail, break into his own bank vault, stop the new manager from licking his face, and, above all, find out where all the gold has gone-otherwise, his life in banking, while very exciting, is going to be really, really short....

Cat's Cradle

Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

One of Vonnegut's major works, this is an apocalyptic tale of the planet's ultimate fate, featuring a cast of unlikely heroes.

Pride's Spell

Sin du Jour: Book 3

Matt Wallace

The team at Sin du Jour--New York's exclusive caterers-to-the-damned--find themselves up against their toughest challenge, yet when they're lured out west to prepare a feast in the most forbidding place in America: Hollywood, where false gods rule supreme.

Meanwhile, back at home, Ritter is attacked at home by the strangest hit-squad the world has ever seen, and the team must pull out all the stops if they're to prevent themselves from being offered up as the main course in a feast they normally provide

Starring: The Prince of Lies, Lena Tarr, Darren Vargas. With Byron Luck. Introducing: the Easter Bunny.

Pride's Spell is the third installment in Matt Wallace's Sin du Jour series.

The Armageddon Rag

George R. R. Martin

Onetime underground journalist Sandy Blair has traveled far from his radical roots in the '60s - until the bizarre and brutal murder of a millionaire rock promoter draws him back. As Sandy sets out to investigate the crime, he finds himself on a magical mystery tour of the pent-up passions of his generation. For a new messiah has resurrected the once legendary rock band Nazgûl - but with an apocalyptic new beat that is a requiem of demonism, mind control, and death only Sandy may be able to change in time....

Fuzzy Nation

John Scalzi

Fuzzy Nation is John Scalzi's reboot of the classic H. Beam Piper novel Little Fuzzy. You can read about how the story came to be on John's blog Whatever.

Welcome to the Monkey House

Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Welcome to the Monkey House is a collection of Kurt Vonnegut's shorter works. Originally printed in publications as diverse as The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction and The Atlantic Monthly, these superb stories share Vonnegut's audacious sense of humor and extraordinary range of creative vision.

The Restaurant at the End of the Universe

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Book 2

Douglas Adams

Facing annihilation at the hands of the warlike Vogons is a curious time to have a craving for tea. It could only happen to the cosmically displaced Arthur Dent and his curious comrades in arms as they hurtle across space powered by pure improbability--and desperately in search of a place to eat.

Among Arthur's motley shipmates are Ford Prefect, a longtime friend and expert contributor to the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy; Zaphod Beeblebrox, the three-armed, two-headed ex-president of the galaxy; Tricia McMillan, a fellow Earth refugee who's gone native (her name is Trillian now); and Marvin, the moody android who suffers nothing and no one very gladly. Their destination? The ultimate hot spot for an evening of apocalyptic entertainment and fine dining, where the food (literally) speaks for itself.

Will they make it? The answer: hard to say. But bear in mind that the Hitchhiker's Guide deleted the term "Future Perfect" from its pages, since it was discovered not to be!

A Civil Campaign

The Vorkosigan Saga: Book 10

Lois McMaster Bujold

Despite all his power, Lord Miles Vorkosigan can't win the hand of the beautiful Vor widow, Ekaterin Vorsoisson, who is violently allergic to marriage as a result of her first exposure. But as Miles has learned from his career in the galactic covert ops, subterfuge is always an option. So he devises a cunning plan.

Nation

Terry Pratchett

When a giant wave destroys his village, Mau is the only one left. Daphne-a traveler from the other side of the globe-is the sole survivor of a shipwreck. Separated by language and customs, the two are united by catastrophe. Slowly, they are joined by other refugees. And as they struggle to protect the small band, Mau and Daphne defy ancestral spirits, challenge death himself, and uncover a long-hidden secret that literally turns the world upside down.

To Say Nothing of the Dog

Oxford Time Travel: Book 3

Connie Willis

In her first full-length novel since her critically acclaimed Doomsday Book Connie Willis, winner of multiple Hugo and Nebula Awards, once again visits the unpredictable world of time travel. But this time the result is a joyous journey into a past and future of comic mishaps and historical cross-purposes, in which the power of human love can still make all the difference.

On the surface, England in the summer of 1888 is possibly the most restful time in history--lazy afternoons boating on the Thames, tea parties, croquet on the lawn--and time traveler Ned Henry is badly in need of a rest. He's been shuttling back and forth between the 21st century and the 1940s looking for a Victorian atrocity called the bishop's birdstump. It's only the latest in a long string of assignments from Lady Schrapnell, the rich dowager who has invaded Oxford University. She's promised to endow the university's time-travel research project in return for their help in rebuilding the famed Coventry Cathedral, destroyed in a Nazi air raid over a hundred years before.

But the bargain has turned into a nightmare. Lady Schrapnell's motto is "God is in the details," and as the l25th anniversary of the cathedral's destruction--and the deadline for its proposed completion--approaches, time-travel research has fallen by the wayside. Now Ned and his colleagues are frantically engaged in installing organ pipes, researching misericords, and generally risking life and limb. So when Ned gets the chance to escape to the Victorian era, he jumps at it. Unfortunately, he isn't really being sent there to recover from his time-lag symptoms, but to correct an incongruity a fellow historian, Verity Kindle, has inadvertently created by bringing something forward from the past.

In theory, such an act is impossible. But now it has happened, and it's up to Ned and Verity to correct the incongruity before it alters history or, worse, destroys the space-time continuum. And they have to do it while coping with eccentric Oxford dons, table-rapping spiritualists, a very spoiled young lady, and an even more spoiled cat. As Ned and Verity try frantically to hold things together and find out why the incongruity happened, the breach widens, time travel goes amok, and everything starts to fall apart--until the fate of the entire space-time continuum hangs on a sÚance, a butler, a bulldog, the battle of Waterloo, and, above all, on the bishop's birdstump.

At once a mystery novel, a time-travel adventure, and a Shakespearean comedy, To Say Nothing of the Dog is a witty and imaginative tale of misconceptions, misunderstandings, and a chaotic world in which the shortest distance between two points is never a straight line, and the secret to the universe truly lies "in the details."

Animal Farm: A Fairy Story

George Orwell

Retro Hugo- and Prometheus-winning Novella

As ferociously fresh as it was more than a half century ago, this remarkable allegory of a downtrodden society of overworked, mistreated animals, and their quest to create a paradise of progress, justice, and equality is one of the most scathing satires ever published. As we witness the rise and bloody fall of the revolutionary animals, we begin to recognize the seeds of totalitarianism in the most idealistic organization; and in our most charismatic leaders, the souls of our cruelest oppressors.

Snuff

Discworld: Book 39

Terry Pratchett

For nearly three decades, Terry Pratchett has enthralled millions of fans worldwide with his irreverent, wonderfully funny satires set in the fabulously imaginative Discworld, a universe remarkably similar to our own. From sports to religion, politics to education, science to capitalism, and everything in between, Pratchett has skewered sacred cows with both laughter and wisdom, and exposed our warts, foibles, and eccentricities in a unique, entertaining, and ultimately serious way.

At long last, Lady Sybil has lured her husband, Sam Vimes, on a well-deserved holiday away from the crime and grime of Ankh-Morpork. But for the commander of the City Watch, a vacation in the country is anything but relaxing. The balls, the teas, the muck—not to mention all that fresh air and birdsong—are more than a bit taxing on a cynical city-born and -bred copper.

Yet a policeman will find a crime anywhere if he decides to look hard enough, and it’s not long before a body is discovered, and Sam—out of his jurisdiction, out of his element, and out of bacon sandwiches (thanks to his well-meaning wife)—must rely on his instincts, guile, and street smarts to see justice done. As he sets off on the chase, though, he must remember to watch where he steps. . . . This is the countryside, after all, and the streets most definitely are not paved with gold.

The Secret Life of Bots

Suzanne Palmer

This novelette originally appeared in Clarkesworld, #132, September 2017. It can also be found in the anthologies The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Twelve (2018), edited by Jonathan Strahan, and The Best Science Fiction of the Year: Volume 3 (2018), edited by Neil Clarke, The Year's Best Military & Adventure SF: Volume 4 (2018), edited by David Afsharirad, and The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy, 2018, edited by Rich Horton.

Read the full story for free at Clarkesworld.

Bellwether

Connie Willis

Sandra Foster studies fads and their meanings for the HiTek corporation. Bennet O'Reilly works with monkey group behavior and chaos theory for the same company. When the two are thrust together due to a misdelivered package and a run of seemingly bad luck, they find a joint project in a flock of sheep. But a series of setbacks and disappointments arise before they are able to find answers to their questions.

Life, the Universe and Everything

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Book 3

Douglas Adams

The unhappy inhabitants of planet Krikkit are sick of looking at the night sky above their heads--so they plan to destroy it. The universe, that is. Now only five individuals stand between the white killer robots of Krikkit and their goal of total annihilation.

They are Arthur Dent, a mild-mannered space and time traveler, who tries to learn how to fly by throwing himself at the ground and missing; Ford Prefect, his best friend, who decides to go insane to see if he likes it; Slartibartfast, the indomitable vicepresident of the Campaign for Real Time, who travels in a ship powered by irrational behavior; Zaphod Beeblebrox, the two-headed, three-armed ex-head honcho of the Universe; and Trillian, the sexy space cadet who is torn between a persistent Thunder God and a very depressed Beeblebrox.

How will it all end? Will it end? Only this stalwart crew knows as they try to avert "universal" Armageddon and save life as we know it--and don't know it!

Cosmicomics

Qfwfq: Book 1

Italo Calvino

Enchanting stories about the evolution of the universe, with characters that are fashioned from mathematical formulae and cellular structures. "Naturally, we were all there, - old Qfwfq said, - where else could we have been? Nobody knew then that there could be space. Or time either: what use did we have for time, packed in there like sardines?" Translated by William Weaver.

The Jennifer Morgue

The Laundry Files: Book 2

Charles Stross

Bob Howard - a T-shirt wearing computer geek and field agent for the super-secret British government agency The Laundry - must save the world from eldritch horrors, codenamed Jennifer Morgue, in this fast-paced spy thriller. Bob's current mission is to stop the evil Ellis Billington from achieving world domination, but he must overcome obstacles including the Gravedust device, which permits communication with the dead; destiny-entanglement protocol; banishment weapons; and Ramona Random, a lethal but beautiful agent for the U.S. counterpart to The Laundry. Billington plans to raise the eldritch horror Jennifer Morgue from the vasty deeps, and communicate with a dead warrior for the purpose of ruling the world.

Blending physics and applied mathematics with the practice of summoning and demonology, this spy-meets-horror novel will keep sci-fi fans on the edge of their seats.

This volume also includes a bonus story, "Pimpf," featuring The Laundry agent Bob Howard in the world of virtual gaming, as well as an afterword entitled "The Golden Age of Spying."

The Stainless Steel Rat's Revenge

The Stainless Steel Rat: Book 2

Harry Harrison

The second adventure of slippery Jim diGriz the Robin Hood of the far future, robbing the rich to give to the even richer...himself.

The Real-Town Murders

Real-Town Murders: Book 1

Adam Roberts

Alma is a private detective in a near-future England, a country desperately trying to tempt people away from the delights of Shine, the immersive successor to the internet. But most people are happy to spend their lives plugged in, and the country is decaying.

Alma's partner is ill, and has to be treated without fail every 4 hours, a task that only Alma can do. If she misses the 5 minute window her lover will die. She is one of the few not to access the Shine.

So when Alma is called to an automated car factory to be shown an impossible death and finds herself caught up in a political coup, she knows that getting too deep may leave her unable to get home.

What follows is a fast-paced Hitchcockian thriller as Alma evades arrest, digs into the conspiracy, and tries to work out how on earth a dead body appeared in the boot of a freshly-made car in a fully-automated factory.

A Series of Steaks

Vina Jie-Min Prasad

This Nebula Award-nominated Clarkesworld Reader's Poll-winning novelette originally appeared in Clarkesworld, #124, January 2017. It can also be found in the anthologies The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Twelve (2018), edited by Jonathan Strahan, The Year's Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Fifth Annual Collection (2018), edited by Gardner Dozois, The Best Science Fiction of the Year: Volume 3 (2018), edited by Neil Clarke, and The Apex Book of World SF: Volume 5 (2018), edited by Cristina Jurado and Lavie Tidhar.

Read the full story for free at Clarkesworld.

The Stainless Steel Rat Saves the World

The Stainless Steel Rat: Book 3

Harry Harrison

The villainous He has travelled back in time to mankind's distant past on the legendary planet Earth (or 'Dirt') of 1984, where he is altering events so that people who opposed him in the Rat's present cease to exist, Angelina amongst them. Using the Helix, a time-travel device invented by the Special Corps' Professor Coypu, diGriz travels to 1984 America, and then to Napoleonic France where tanks and aircraft are helping bring about Napoleon's victory.

Lost in a Good Book

Thursday Next: Book 2

Jasper Fforde

If Thursday thought she could avoid the spotlight after her heroic escapades in the pages of Jane Eyre, she was sorely mistaken. The unforgettable literary detective whom Michiko Kakutani of The New York Times calls "part Bridget Jones, part Nancy Drew and part Dirty Harry" had another think coming. The love of her life has been eradicated by Goliath, everyone's favorite corrupt multinational. To rescue him Thursday must retrieve a supposedly vanquished enemy from the pages of "The Raven." But Poe is off-limits to even the most seasoned literary interloper. Enter a professional: the man-hating Miss Havisham from Dickens's Great Expectations. As her new apprentice, Thursday keeps her motives secret as she learns the ropes of Jurisfiction, where she moonlights as a Prose Resource Operative inside books. As if jumping into the likes of Kafka, Austen, and Beatrix Potter's Tale of the Flopsy Bunnies weren't enough, Thursday finds herself the target of a series of potentially lethal coincidences, the authenticator of a newly discovered play by the Bard himself, and the only one who can prevent an unidentifiable pink sludge from engulfing all life on Earth.

The inventive, exuberant, and totally original literary fun that began with The Eyre Affair continues with Fforde's magnificent new adventure, the second installment in what is sure to become a classic series of literary fantasy.

The Stainless Steel Rat

The Stainless Steel Rat: Book 1

Harry Harrison

In the vastness of space, the crimes just get bigger and Slippery Jim diGriz, the Stainless Steel Rat, is the biggest criminal of them all. He can con humans, aliens and any number of robots time after time. Jim is so slippery that all the inter-galactic cops can do is make him one of their own.

Yellow Blue Tibia

Adam Roberts

Russia, 1946. With the Nazis recently defeated, Stalin gathers half a dozen of the top Soviet science fiction authors in a dacha in the countryside. Convinced that the defeat of America is only a few years away-and equally convinced that the Soviet Union needs a massive external threat to hold it together-Stalin orders the writers to compose a massively detailed and highly believable story about an alien race poised to invade the earth. The little group of writers gets down to the task and spends months working until new orders come from Moscow to immediately halt the project. The scientists obey and live their lives until, in the aftermath of Chernobyl, the survivors gather again, because something strange has happened: the story they invented in 1946 is starting to come true.

Little Fuzzy

Fuzzy Series: Book 1

H. Beam Piper

When the Zarathustra Company takes over a supposedly uninhabited planet, reaping it for all that it is worth, Jack Holloway, a sunstone prospector, and his family of Fuzzies are determined to save this world from utter destruction.

The Early Asimov: or, Eleven Years of Trying

The Early Asimov

Isaac Asimov

The quintessence of modern science fiction is thought by many to be contained in the novels and short stories of Isaac Asimov, and this new collection of twenty-seven of his early stories again confirms his inexhaustible imagination and compelling style.

Each story is prefaced by Dr. Asimov with fascinating, and frequently amusing biographical details about how and when he came to write it as well as his own critical evaluations of it. The result is a doubly rich science fiction treat--an assortment of tales that are thoroughly entertaining in their own right besides providing a first-hand look at the development of the young author and promises of the things yet to come from this master writer.

The stories in this collection were subsequently republished in The Early Asimov Volume 1-3.

Table of Contents:

  • Biographical Comments - (1972) - essay by Isaac Asimov
  • The Callistan Menace - (1940)
  • Ring Around the Sun - (1940)
  • The Magnificent Possession - (1940)
  • Trends - (1939)
  • The Weapon Too Dreadful to Use - (1939)
  • Black Friar of the Flame - (1942)
  • Half-Breed - (1940)
  • The Secret Sense - (1941)
  • Homo Sol - (1940)
  • Half-Breeds on Venus - (1940)
  • The Imaginary - (1942)
  • Heredity - (1941)
  • History - (1941)
  • Christmas on Ganymede - (1942)
  • The Little Man on the Subway - (1950) - shortstory by Isaac Asimov and Frederik Pohl
  • The Hazing - (1942)
  • Super-Neutron - (1941)
  • Not Final! - (1941)
  • Legal Rites - (1950) - novelette by Isaac Asimov and Frederik Pohl
  • Time Pussy - (1942)
  • Author! Author! - (1964)
  • Death Sentence - (1943)
  • Blind Alley - (1945)
  • No Connection - (1948)
  • The Endochronic Properties of Resublimated Thiotimoline - (1948)
  • The Red Queen's Race - (1949)
  • Mother Earth - (1949)
  • Appendix - The Sixty Stories of the Campbell Years - essay by Isaac Asimov

Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency

Dirk Gently: Book 1

Douglas Adams

There is a long tradition of Great Detectives, and Dirk Gently does not belong to it. But his search for a missing cat uncovers a ghost, a time traveler, AND the devastating secret of humankind! Detective Gently's bill for saving the human race from extinction: NO CHARGE.

Only Forward

Michael Marshall Smith

Only a handful of authors write with such startling originality that the uniqueness of their vision has become synonymous with their name. In Spares and One of Us, Michael Marshall Smith has earned that distinction. In this unsettling, suspenseful, and wildly imaginative novel he's written a tale that from page one hurtles us....

Only Forward

Call him Stark. If you have to. If you're lucky, you won't call him at all. Because if you do, it means you've got trouble. Big trouble. And the problem is that before Stark is done fixing something, a whole lot of other things usually get broken. Like laws and lives--and anyone who gets in the way. It's that attitude that's earned him his latest assignment: finding a missing VIP named Fell Alkland. The authorities believe Alkland has been kidnapped. Stark doesn't. He hasn't stayed alive this long without learning the basics of survival in a world hurtling straight to hell: Things are always more complicated than they seem. And when a job seems too easy, that's when something really ugly is about to happen. For Fell Alkland is about to become Stark's worst nightmare, a nightmare where anything can happen at any time--where friends can become enemies in a heartbeat and your most secret fear a soul-screaming reality. And the worst of it is that for this nightmare you don't even have to be asleep.

So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Book 4

Douglas Adams

Back on Earth with nothing more to show for his long, strange trip through time and space than a ratty towel and a plastic shopping bag, Arthur Dent is ready to believe that the past eight years were all just a figment of his stressed-out imagination. But a gift-wrapped fishbowl with a cryptic inscription, the mysterious disappearance of Earth's dolphins, and the discovery of his battered copy of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy all conspire to give Arthur the sneaking suspicion that something otherworldly is indeed going on. . . .

God only knows what it all means. And fortunately, He left behind a Final Message of explanation. But since it's light-years away from Earth, on a star surrounded by souvenir booths, finding out what it is will mean hitching a ride to the far reaches of space aboard a UFO with a giant robot. But what else is new?

Anansi Boys

American Gods: Book 2

Neil Gaiman

God is dead. Meet the kids.

When Fat Charlie's dad named something, it stuck. Like calling Fat Charlie "Fat Charlie." Even now, twenty years later, Charlie Nancy can't shake that name, one of the many embarrassing "gifts" his father bestowed -- before he dropped dead on a karaoke stage and ruined Fat Charlie's life.

Mr. Nancy left Fat Charlie things. Things like the tall, good-looking stranger who appears on Charlie's doorstep, who appears to be the brother he never knew. A brother as different from Charlie as night is from day, a brother who's going to show Charlie how to lighten up and have a little fun ... just like Dear Old Dad. And all of a sudden, life starts getting very interesting for Fat Charlie.

Because, you see, Charlie's dad wasn't just any dad. He was Anansi, a trickster god, the spider-god. Anansi is the spirit of rebellion, able to overturn the social order, create wealth out of thin air, and baffle the devil. Some said he could cheat even Death himself.

The Collapsing Empire

Interdependency: Book 1

John Scalzi

Our universe is ruled by physics and faster than light travel is not possible -- until the discovery of The Flow, an extra-dimensional field we can access at certain points in space-time that transport us to other worlds, around other stars.

Humanity flows away from Earth, into space, and in time forgets our home world and creates a new empire, the Interdependency, whose ethos requires that no one human outpost can survive without the others. It's a hedge against interstellar war -- and a system of control for the rulers of the empire.

The Flow is eternal -- but it is not static. Just as a river changes course, The Flow changes as well, cutting off worlds from the rest of humanity. When it's discovered that The Flow is moving, possibly cutting off all human worlds from faster than light travel forever, three individuals -- a scientist, a starship captain and the Empress of the Interdependency -- are in a race against time to discover what, if anything, can be salvaged from an interstellar empire on the brink of collapse.

The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul

Dirk Gently: Book 2

Douglas Adams

When a passenger check-in desk at London's Heathrow Airport disappears in a ball of orange flame, the explosion is deemed an act of God. But which god, wonders holistic detective Dirk Gently? What god would be hanging around Heathrow trying to catch the 3:37 to Oslo? And what has this to do with Dirk's latest--and late-- client, found only this morning with his head revolving atop the hit record "Hot Potato"? Amid the hostile attentions of a stray eagle and the trauma of a very dirty refrigerator, super-sleuth Dirk Gently will once again solve the mysteries of the universe...

The Stainless Steel Rat Wants You

The Stainless Steel Rat: Book 4

Harry Harrison

After saving the world, diGriz is called on to save the universe. Liberating his two, now teenage, twin' sons from a military boarding school and penitentiary, diGriz sets out to free his wife, who has been arrested by the tax men. But the family is soon fighting an enemy of a different sort, when the humans-only galaxy of the League is invaded by all manner of hideous aliens. The Rat, disguised in the most hideous combination of alien physical features, is sent into the centre of the aliens' stronghold, where he finds himself the object of desire among the aliens. His task is to stop the aliens, who plan to wipe out every human in the universe.

The Well of Lost Plots

Thursday Next: Book 3

Jasper Fforde

Jasper Fforde has done it again in this genre-bending blend of crime fiction, fantasy, and top-drawer literary entertainment. After two rollicking New York Times bestselling adventures through Western literature, resourceful literary detective Thursday Next definitely needs some downtime. And what better place for a respite than in the hidden depths of the Well of Lost Plots, where all unpublished books reside? But peace and quiet remain elusive for Thursday, who soon discovers that the Well is a veritable linguistic free-for-all, where grammasites run rampant, plot devices are hawked on the black market, and lousy books-like the one she has taken up residence in-are scrapped for salvage. To make matters worse, a murderer is stalking the personnel of Jurisfiction and it's up to Thursday to save the day. A brilliant feat of literary showmanship filled with wit, fantasy, and effervescent originality, this Ffordian tour de force is the most exciting Thursday Next adventure yet.

William Shakespeare's Star Wars: A New Hope

Star Wars: Shakespeare: Book 4

Ian Doescher

Return once more to a galaxy far, far away with this sublime retelling of George Lucas's epic Star Wars in the style of the immortal Bard of Avon. The saga of a wise (Jedi) knight and an evil (Sith) lord, of a beautiful princess held captive and a young hero coming of age, Star Wars abounds with all the valor and villainy of Shakespeare's greatest plays. 'Tis a tale told by fretful droids, full of faithful Wookiees and fearstome Stormtroopers, signifying...pretty much everything.

Reimagined in glorious iambic pentameter--and complete with twenty gorgeous Elizabethan illustrations--William Shakespeare's Star Wars will astound and edify Rebels and Imperials alike. Zounds! This is the book you're looking for.

The Merchants' War

Space Merchants: Book 2

Frederik Pohl

The witty sequel to Frederik Pohl's & C. M. Kornbluth's legendary science fiction classic The Space Merchants, written 30 years later.

Great advertising agencies still dominate the world and control all governments and every aspect of human behavior. When a handful of renegades on Venus zealously opposes the so-called "benefits" of the hucksters' paradise, it seems inevitable that the all-powerful account executives of Earth will stop at nothing, not even war, to force the rebels to submit.

But the Veenies have a plan.../p>

Citizen in Space

Robert Sheckley

Robert Sheckley's second story collection, including:

  • The Mountain Without a Name
  • The Accountant - (1954)
  • Hunting Problem - (1955)
  • A Thief in Time - (1954)
  • The Luckiest Man in the World - (1955)
  • Hands Off - (1954)
  • Something for Nothing - (1954)
  • A Ticket to Tranai - (1955)
  • The Battle - (1954)
  • Skulking Permit - (1954)
  • Citizen in Space - (1955)
  • Ask a Foolish Question - (1953)

The Alteration

Masters of Science Fiction: Book 2

Kingsley Amis

The year is 1976 and we are alive in an all-Catholic world. The Reformation never took place because Martin Luther made a deal with Rome and became Pope Martin I. The "alteration" proposed to Hubert Anvil, brilliant 10-year-old boy soprano, is that most feared by all males. Pope John XXIV wishes Hubert to preserve the purity of his voice to glorify the Church on a permanent basis; Hubert wishes to share his talent but he has some disquieting thoughts about Pope John's proposal.

Time Enough for Love

Robert A. Heinlein

Approaching death, Lazarus Long is convinced to dictate the story of his life. He finds that while he has lived and loved more than most, there are still things that he'd like to experience.

A Natural History of Dragons: A Memoir by Lady Trent

Lady Trent: Book 1

Marie Brennan

You, dear reader, continue at your own risk. It is not for the faint of heart - no more so than the study of dragons itself. But such study offers rewards beyond compare: to stand in a dragon's presence, even for the briefest of moments - even at the risk of one's life - is a delight that, once experienced, can never be forgotten. . . .

All the world, from Scirland to the farthest reaches of Eriga, know Isabella, Lady Trent, to be the world's preeminent dragon naturalist. She is the remarkable woman who brought the study of dragons out of the misty shadows of myth and misunderstanding into the clear light of modern science. But before she became the illustrious figure we know today, there was a bookish young woman whose passion for learning, natural history, and, yes, dragons defied the stifling conventions of her day.

Here at last, in her own words, is the true story of a pioneering spirit who risked her reputation, her prospects, and her fragile flesh and bone to satisfy her scientific curiosity; of how she sought true love and happiness despite her lamentable eccentricities; and of her thrilling expedition to the perilous mountains of Vystrana, where she made the first of many historic discoveries that would change the world forever.

Marie Brennan introduces an enchanting new world in A Natural History of Dragons.

Bill the Galactic Hero

Bill the Galactic Hero

Harry Harrison

It was the highest honor to defend the Empire against the dreaded Chingers, an enemy race of seven-foot-tall lizards. But Bill, a Technical Fertilizer Operator from a planet of farmers, wasn't interested in honor-he was only interested in two things: his chosen career, and the shapely curves of Inga-Maria Calyphigia. Then a recruiting robot shanghaied him with knockout drops, and he came to in deep space, aboard the Empire warship Christine Keeler. And from there, things got even worse.

The Man Who Folded Himself

David Gerrold

This classic work of science fiction is widely considered to be the ultimate time-travel novel. When Daniel Eakins inherits a time machine, he soon realizes that he has enormous power to shape the course of history. He can foil terrorists, prevent assassinations, or just make some fast money at the racetrack. And if he doesn't like the results of the change, he can simply go back in time and talk himself out of making it! But Dan soon finds that there are limits to his powers and forces beyond his control.

Lest Darkness Fall

Galaxy Science Fiction: Book 24

L. Sprague de Camp

Martin Padway, 20th-century archaeologist, becomes a reluctant one-way time-traveller, landing in Rome on the verge of the Dark Ages. With no way home, he sets out to make the world he's in a better place.

In short order, Padway "invents" and introduces such things as Printing and newspapers, Arabic numerals, Double entry bookkeeping, Copernican astronomy, and, most important -- Distilling. And the world of decaying Rome will never be the same!

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court

Mark Twain

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court is Mark Twain's classic tale of Hank Morgan, a resident of 19th century Hartford Connecticut who is inexplicably transported to the early medieval England of King Arthur. A classic satire, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court pokes fun at the romanticized notions of chivalry and the idealization of the middle ages. A delightful and enchanting tale, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court shows Twain at his satirical best.

When A Connecticut Yankee at King Arthur's Court was published in 1889, Mark Twain was undergoing a series of personal and professional crises. In his Introduction, M. Thomas Inge shows how what began as a literary burlesque of British chivalry and culture developed to tragedy and into a novel that remains a major literary and cultural text for generations of new readers.

Phule's Paradise

Phule's Company: Book 2

Robert Lynn Asprin

Captain Willard Phule must lead his group of unlikely interstellar armed forces on a mission to protect The Fat Chance, an intergalactic casino, from a criminal takeover.

The Stainless Steel Rat Gets Drafted

The Stainless Steel Rat: Book 7

Harry Harrison

In a galaxy where civilization covers every world with steel and ferroconcrete, only a very special man can break all the rules and still stay free. A man who moves through the rafters of society like a rat. A Stainless Steel Rat . . . .

And when the galaxy goes to war, it needs special men. That's when The Stainless Steel Rat Gets Drafted. The 25th century's most dangerous outlaw is back--and this time it means war! Slippery Jim diGriz, better known as the Stainless Steel Rat, is seeking revenge for the murder of his mentor-in-crime, the fabled archcriminal known as The Bishop. His trail leads to Nevenkebla and the iron-fisted dictator General Zennor--the kind of man who'd sell his own mother into slavery just to see the expression on her face.

Now in the uniform of a Nevenkeblan soldier, Jim discovers Zennor's vile plan to enslave a defenseless planet. Only a man with a Special code of honor--only a Stainless Steel Rat--can save the world from the invading horde.

The Stainless Steel Rat for President

The Stainless Steel Rat: Book 5

Harry Harrison

The Stainless Steel rat is back! Slippery Jim diGriz, the future's most lovable, laughable, larcenous conman tumed counterspy, retums for yet another high-tension mission.

This time the Special Corps has given the Rat a daring assignment - liberate a backward tourist planet from the clutches of an aging dictator. With his lovely but lethal wife, Angelina, and his two stalwart sons, James and Bolivar, diGriz pits ballots against bullets in the fight for freedom. He's vowed to restore truth, justice, and democracy to the world of Parisio-Aqui, if he has to lie, cheat, and steal to do it.

The Empress of Mars

The Company: Book 9

Kage Baker

When the British Arean Company founded its Martian colony, it welcomed any settlers it could get. Outcasts, misfits and dreamers emigrated in droves to undertake the grueling task of terraforming the cold red planet--only to be abandoned when the BAC discovered it couldn't turn a profit on Mars.

This is the story of Mary Griffith, a determined woman with three daughters, who opened the only place to buy a beer on the Tharsis Bulge. It's the story of Manco Inca, whose attempt to terraform Mars brought a new goddess vividly to life; of Stanford Crosley, con man extraordinaire; of Ottorino Vespucci, space cowboy and romantic hero; of the Clan Morrigan, of the denizens of the Martian Motel, and of the machinations of another Company entirely, all of whom contribute to the downfall of the BAC and the founding of a new world. But Mary and her struggles and triumphs is at the center of it all, in her bar, the Empress of Mars.

Based on the Hugo-nominated novella of the same name, this is a rollicking novel of action, planetary romance, and high adventure.


Listen to the author read the novella version of this story at Green Man Review.

Norstrilia

Cordwainer Smith

Norstrilia tells the story of a boy form the planet Old North Australia (where rich, simple farmers grow the immortality drug Stroon), how he bought Old Earth, and how his visit to Earth changed both him and Earth itself.

The Privilege of the Sword

The World of Riverside: Book 3

Ellen Kushner

Welcome to Riverside, where the aristocratic and the ambitious battle for power in the city's ballroom, brothels and boudoirs. Into this alluring world walks Katherine, a well-bred country girl versed in the rules of conventional society. Her mistake is thinking that they apply. For Katherine's host and uncle, Alec Campion, aka the Mad Duke Tremontaine, is in charge here--and to him, rules are made to be broken.

When Alec decides it would be more amusing for his niece to learn swordplay than to follow the usual path to marriage, her world changes forever. Blade in hand, it's up to Katherine to navigate a maze of secrets and scoundrels--and to gain the self-discovery that comes to those who master....

The Practice Effect

David Brin

Dennis Nuel is a physicist who, during his research, develops a machine that allows him to explore alternate realities, each of which sport some very strange scientific properties.

The Girl, the Gold Watch & Everything

John D. MacDonald

To ever-loyal Kirby Winter, multimillionaire Uncle Omar left nothing -- nothing but a gold watch and a sealed letter to be opened in one year. But Kirby is destined to inherit the magical power to freeze time in its tracks. Power like that promises unlimited wealth, wealth that can't buy love, but does make a down payment on a lot of deadly trouble. In a universe without time, can Kirby stay one step ahead?

I Met a Traveller in an Antique Land

Connie Willis

Jim is in New York City at Christmastime shopping a book based on his blog--Gone for Good-- premised on the fact that "being nostalgic for things that have disappeared is ridiculous." Progress decides for people what they need and what's obsolete. It's that simple. Of course, not everyone agrees. After Jim bombs a contentious interview with a radio host who defends the sacred technology of the printed, tangible book, he gets caught in a rainstorm only to find himself with no place to take refuge other than a quaint, old-fashioned bookshop.

Ozymandias Books is not just any store. Jim wanders intrigued through stacks of tomes he doesn't quite recognize the titles of, none with prices. Here he discovers a mysteriously pristine, seemingly endless wonderland of books--where even he gets nostalgic for his childhood favorite. And, yes, the overwhelmed and busy clerk showing him around says they have a copy. But it's only after Jim leaves that he understands the true nature of Ozymandias and how tragic it is that some things may be gone forever...

This novella originally appeared in Asimov's Science Fiction, November-December 2017. It was published in chapbook edition in 2018.

Crosstalk

Connie Willis

In the not-too-distant future, a simple outpatient procedure to increase empathy between romantic partners has become all the rage. And Briddey Flannigan is delighted when her boyfriend, Trent, suggests undergoing the operation prior to a marriage proposal -- to enjoy better emotional connection and a perfect relationship with complete communication and understanding. But things don't quite work out as planned, and Briddey finds herself connected to someone else entirely -- in a way far beyond what she signed up for.

It is almost more than she can handle -- especially when the stress of managing her all-too-eager-to-communicate-at-all-times family is already burdening her brain. But that's only the beginning. As things go from bad to worse, she begins to see the dark side of too much information, and to realize love -- and communication -- are far more complicated than she ever imagined.

What Mad Universe

Fredric Brown

BUG-EYED MONSTERS ON BROADWAY Pulp SF magazine editor Keith Winton was answering a letter from a teenage fan when the first moon rocket fell back to Earth and blew him away. But where to? Greenville, New York, looked the same, but Bems (Bug-Eyed Monsters) just like the ones on the cover of Startling Stories walked the streets without attracting undue comment. And when he brought out a half-dollar coin in a drugstore, the cops wanted to shoot him on sight as an Arcturian spy. Wait a minute. Seven-foot purple moon-monsters? Earth at war with Arcturus? General Dwight D. Eisenhower in command of Venus Sector? What mad universe was this? One thing was for sure: Keith Winton had to find out fast - or he'd be good and dead, in this universe or any other.

Tik-Tok

John Sladek

Something has gone very seriously wrong with Tik-Tok's "asimov circuits." They should keep him on the straight and narrow, following Asimov's first law of robotics: A robot shall not injure a human being, or through inaction allow a human being to come to harm. But, that's not what's happening. Although every thing looks fine from the surface, and Tik-Tok maintains the outward appearance of a mild-mannered robot, his agenda is murderously different. And, it's not just because of his artistic tendencies and sympathy for the robot rights movement, either.

The Planet Buyer

Cordwainer Smith

Rod McBan owned Earth.

One night of frenzied manipulation had made an obscure rancer on a far planet the richest man in history, and the sole owner of Man's home planet. It had also made him the target of every criminal in the Universe.

There was one way Rod McBan could reach the planet he owned - alive. But it meant he would have to die first...

The Planet Buyer is something new in Science Fiction - a strange, compelling picture of a far future of more-than-human beauty, complexity and terror.

An Alien Heat

The Dancers at the End of Time: Book 1

Michael Moorcock

When Jherek Carnelian meets Mrs Amelia Underwood, a lady time traveller from 1896, he determines to possess her and finds himself being plunged backwards in time to Victorian London. An Alien Heat is set in a crazy world of jewelled cities with ripe, rotting technologies…

The Consuming Fire

Interdependency: Book 2

John Scalzi

The Interdependency, humanity's interstellar empire, is on the verge of collapse. The Flow, the extra-dimensional conduit that makes travel between the stars possible, is disappearing, leaving entire star systems stranded. When it goes, human civilization may go with it -- unless desperate measures can be taken.

Emperox Grayland II, the leader of the Interdependency, is ready to take those measures to help ensure the survival of billions. But nothing is ever that easy. Arrayed before her are those who believe the collapse of the Flow is a myth -- or at the very least, an opportunity that can allow them to ascend to power.

While Grayland prepares for disaster, others are preparing for a civil war, a war that will take place in the halls of power, the markets of business and the altars of worship as much as it will take place between spaceships and battlefields. The Emperox and her allies are smart and resourceful, but then so are her enemies. Nothing about this power struggle will be simple or easy... and all of humanity will be caught in its widening gyre.

The Rolling Stones (Space Family Stone)

Heinlein Juveniles: Book 6

Robert A. Heinlein

The rollicking adventures of the Stone Family on a tour of the Solar System. It all statred when the twins, Castor and Pollux Stone, decided that life on the Lunar colony was too dull and decided to buy their own spaceship and go into business for themselves. Their father thought that was a fine, idea, except that he and Grandma Hazel bought the spaceship and the whole Stone Family were on their way out into the far reaches of the Solar System, with stops on Mars(where the twins got a lesson in the interplanetary economics of bicycles and the adorable little critters called flatcats who, it turned out, bred like rabbits; or perhaps, Tribbles....), out to the asteroids, where Mrs. Stone, an M.D., was needed to treat a dangerous outbreak of disease, even further out, to Titan and beyond.

Unforgettable Heinlein characters on an unforgettable adventure.

A Stainless Steel Rat is Born

The Stainless Steel Rat: Book 6

Harry Harrison

A Rat by any other name...

Young Jim diGriz has but one ambition in life - to become a master criminal, perhaps the greatest that little Bit O'Heaven has ever seen. So that he can learn the ropes, he has to mix with the right people - or rather the wrong people. And for this kind of on-the-job training the best place to meet the worst villains is in prison. But even for a customer as slippery as Jim, getting behind bars is'nt easy.

So Jim does a bank job, very badly, with the avowed intention of getting himself knicked...

Buddy Holly Is Alive and Well on Ganymede

Bradley Denton

When televisions worldwide begin broadcasting a nonstop, noninterruptible live performance by Buddy Holly purporting to originate somewhere in the vicinity of Jupiter, Oliver Vale--the apparent object of the broadcasts--finds himself drafted for a mission so secret that even he is not sure of its purpose. Denton ( Wrack and Roll , Warner, 1986) fills this supremely funny novel with warring space aliens disguised as humans, a robot dog, a psychopathic assassin, an overzealous psychologist and her jealous husband, a motorcycle gang, and a messianic televangelist--all to prove that rock 'n' roll never really died.

Captain Vorpatril's Alliance

The Vorkosigan Saga: Book 13

Lois McMaster Bujold

GOOD INTENTIONS, BAD INTEL

Captain Ivan Vorpatril sometimes thinks that if not for his family, he might have no troubles at all. But he has the dubious fortune of the hyperactive Miles Vorkosigan as a cousin, which has too-often led to his getting dragged into one of Miles' schemes, with risk to life and limb-and military career-that Ivan doesn't consider entirely fair. Although much practice has made Ivan more adept at fending off his mother's less-than-subtle reminders that he should be getting married and continuing the Vorpatril lineage.

Fortunately, his current duty is on the planet Komarr as staff officer to Admiral Desplains, far from both his cousin and his mother back on their homeworld of Barrayar. It's an easy assignment and nobody is shooting at him. What could go wrong?

Plenty, it turns out, when Byerly Vorrutyer, an undercover agent for Imperial Security, shows up on his doorstep and asks him to make the acquaintance of a young woman, recently arrived on Komarr, who seems to be in danger. That Byerly is characteristically vague about the nature of the danger, not to mention the lady's name, should have been Ivan's first clue, but Ivan is no more able to turn aside from aiding a damsel in distress than he could resist trying to rescue a kitten from a tree.

It is but a short step down the road of good intentions to the tangle of Ivan's life, in trouble with the Komarran authorities, with his superiors, and with the lethal figures hunting the mysterious but lovely Tej and her exotic blue companion Rish-a tangle to test the lengths to which Ivan will go as an inspired protector.

But though his predicament is complicated, at least Ivan doesn't have to worry about hassle from family. Or so he believes . . .

The Dancers at the End of Time

The Dancers at the End of Time

Michael Moorcock

Enter a decaying far, far future society, a time when anything and everything is possible, where words like 'conscience' and 'morality' are meaningless, and where heartfelt love blossoms mysteriously between Mrs Amelia Underwood, an unwilling time traveller, and Jherek Carnelian, a bemused denizen of the End of Time.

The Dancers at the End of Time, containing the novels An Alien Heat, The Hollow Lands and The End of All Songs, is a brilliant homage to the 1890s of Wilde, Beardsley and the fin de siecle decadents, satire at its sharpest and most colourful.

This is the omnibus edition of the three books in The Dancers at the End of Time series.

Mostly Harmless

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Book 5

Douglas Adams

Douglas Adams is back with the amazing, logic-defying, but-why-stop-now fifth novel in the Hitchhiker Trilogy. Here is the epic story of Random, who sets out on a transgalactic quest to find the planet of her ancestors.

Double Star

Robert A. Heinlein

One minute, down and out actor Lorenzo Smythe was -- as usual -- in a bar, drinking away his troubles as he watched his career go down the tubes. Then a space pilot bought him a drink, and the next thing Smythe knew, he was shanghaied to Mars.

Suddenly he found himself agreeing to the most difficult role of his career: impersonating an important politician who had been kidnapped. Peace with the Martians was at stake -- failure to pull off the act could result in interplanetary war. And Smythe's own life was on the line -- for if he wasn't assassinated, there was always the possibility that he might be trapped in his new role forever!

Gloriana

Michael Moorcock

Gloriana rules an Albion whose empire embraces America and most of Asia. A new Golden Age of peace, enlightenment and prosperity has dawned. Gloriana is Albion and Albion is Gloriana; if one falls, so too will the other. And Gloriana is oppressed by the burden this places upon her - and by the fact that she remains incapable of orgasm. The maintenance of the delicate balance that keeps Albion and Gloriana thriving depends of Montfallcon, Gloriana's Chancellor, and on his network of spies and assassins - in particular on Quire, cold hearted seducer of virtue and murderer of innocence. When Quire falls out with Montfallcon, he forms an alliance with his greatest enemy and conceives a plan to ruin Gloriana, destroy Albion, the empire and the Golden Age itself. But even the utterly ruthless Quire does not fully understand what he has set in motion when he persuades the Queen to fall in love with him...

The Goblin Reservation

Masters of Science Fiction: Book 32

Clifford D. Simak

En route to an interplanetary research mission, a scientist is abducted by a strange, shadowy race of aliens and taken to a previously uncharted planet, a storehouse of information that would be invaluable--even to an Earth so advanced that time travel allows goblins, dinosaurs, even Shakespeare to coexist.

Dimension of Miracles

Robert Sheckley

Thomas Carmody wins the Intergalactic Sweepstakes and leaves Earth behind. He ends up following his fast-talking Prize from place to place, seeing talking dinosaurs, a perfect city smothering its residents with motherly love, a giant slightly bored God and much more. The only problem is that Death is chasing closely after him and there seems to be no way to get safely home...

Immortality, Inc.

Robert Sheckley

2110 --- For a price, the Hereafter Corporation guaranteed life afer death --- but they couldn't promise what it would be like...

Unseen Academicals

Discworld: Book 37

Terry Pratchett

The wizards at Ankh-Morpork's Unseen University are renowned for many things—wisdom, magic, and their love of teatime—but athletics is most assuredly not on the list. And so when Lord Ventinari, the city's benevolent tyrant, strongly suggests to Archchancellor Mustrum Ridcully that the university revive an erstwhile tradition and once again put forth a football team composed of faculty, students, and staff, the wizards of UU find themselves in a quandary. To begin with, they have to figure out just what it is that makes this sport—soccer with a bit of rugby thrown in—so popular with Ankh-Morporkians of all ages and social strata. Then they have to learn how to play it. Oh, and on top of that, they must win a football match without using magic.

Meanwhile, Trev (a handsome street urchin and a right good kicker) falls hard for kitchen maid Juliet (beautiful, dim, and perhaps the greatest fashion model there ever was), and Juliet's best pal, UU night cook Glenda (homely, sensible, and a baker of jolly good pies) befriends the mysterious Mr. Nutt (about whom no one knows very much, including Mr. Nutt, which is worrisome . . .). As the big match approaches, these four lives are entangled and changed forever. Because the thing about football—the most important thing about football­—is that it is never just about football.

Eye in the Sky

Gregg Press Science Fiction Series: Book 67

Philip K. Dick

While sightseeing at the Belmont Bevatron, Jack Hamilton, along with seven others, is caught in a lab accident. When he regains consciousness, he is in a fantasy world of Old Testament morality gone awry-a place of instant plagues, immediate damnations, and death to all perceived infidels. Hamilton figures out how he and his compatriots can escape this world and return to their own, but first they must pass through three other vividly fantastical worlds, each more perilous and hilarious than the one before.

Winner of both the Hugo and John W. Campbell awards for best novel, widely regarded as the premiere science fiction writer of his day, and 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.

Zodiac

Neal Stephenson

Sangamon Taylor's a New Age Sam Spade who sports a wet suit instead of a trench coat and prefers Jolt from the can to Scotch on the rocks. He knows about chemical sludge the way he knows about evil -- all too intimately. And the toxic trail he follows leads to some high and foul places. Before long Taylor's house is bombed, his every move followed, he's adopted by reservation Indians, moves onto the FBI's most wanted list, makes up with his girlfriend, and plays a starring role in the near-assassination of a presidential candidate.

Closing the case with the aid of his burnout roomate, his tofu-eating comrades, three major networks, and a range of unconventional weaponry, Sangamon Taylor pulls off the most startling caper in Boston Harbor since the Tea Party. As he navigates this ecological thriller with hardboiled wit and the biggest outboard motor he can get his hands on, Taylor reveals himself as one of the last of the white-hatted good guys in a very toxic world.

Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas

John Scalzi

Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the year 2456. It's a prestige posting, and Andrew is thrilled all the more to be assigned to the ship's Xenobiology laboratory.

Life couldn't be better... until Andrew begins to pick up on the fact that (1) every Away Mission involves some kind of lethal confrontation with alien forces, (2) the ship's captain, its chief science officer, and the handsome Lieutenant Kerensky always survive these confrontations, and (3) at least one low-ranked crew member is, sadly, always killed.

Not surprisingly, a great deal of energy below decks is expendedon avoiding, at all costs, being assigned to an Away Mission. Then Andrew stumbles on information that completely transforms his and his colleagues' understanding of what the starship Intrepid really is... and offers them a crazy, high-risk chance to save their own lives.

Agent to the Stars

John Scalzi

The space-faring Yherajk have come to Earth to meet us and to begin humanity's first interstellar friendship. There's just one problem: They're hideously ugly and they smell like rotting fish.

So getting humanity's trust is a challenge. The Yherajk need someone who can help them close the deal.

Enter Thomas Stein, who knows something about closing deals. He's one of Hollywood's hottest young agents. But although Stein may have just concluded the biggest deal of his career, it's quite another thing to negotiate for an entire alien race. To earn his percentage this time, he's going to need all the smarts, skills, and wits he can muster.

read "Agent to the Stars" online

The Best of Frederik Pohl

Ballantine's Classic Library of Science Fiction: Book 5

Frederik Pohl

Classic Science Fiction

Here in one superlative volume 17 Science-Fiction tales by a master storyteller.

"The Midas Plague" - They had committed the greatest crime: failure to consume enough! So their punishment was to consume more and more and more....

"The Day the Icicle Works Closed" - The world was facing total unemployment, and the people had only one thing left to hock, their bodies!

"Happy Birthday, Dear Jesus" - There was peace on Earth. But joy to all men? Well, that was another matter!

"The Martian in the Attic" - What's the value of a real, live Martian? Duniop was determined to find out - and he did!

"Tunnel Under the World" - Things are not always what they seem, in fact. Not even what they seem to seem!

And lots more!

Table of Contents:

  • A Variety of Excellence - (1975) - essay by Lester del Rey
  • The Tunnel Under the World - (1955)
  • Punch - (1961)
  • Three Portraits and a Prayer - (1962)
  • Day Million - (1966)
  • Happy Birthday, Dear Jesus - (1956)
  • We Never Mention Aunt Nora - (1958)
  • Father of the Stars - (1964)
  • The Day the Martians Came - (1967)
  • The Midas Plague - (1954)
  • The Snowmen - (1959)
  • How to Count on Your Fingers - (1956)
  • Grandy Devil - (1955)
  • Speed Trap - (1967)
  • The Richest Man in Levittown - (1959)
  • The Day the Icicle Works Closed - (1960)
  • The Hated - (1958)
  • The Martian in the Attic - (1960)
  • The Census Takers - (1956)
  • The Children of Night - (1964)
  • What the Author Has to Say About All This - (1975) - essay by Frederik Pohl

The High Crusade

Poul Anderson

In the year of grace 1345, as Sir Roger Baron de Tourneville is gathering an army to join King Edward III in the war against France, a most astonishing event occurs: a huge silver ship descends through the sky and lands in a pasture beside the little village of Ansby in northeastern Lincolnshire. The Wersgorix, whose scouting ship it is, are quite expert at taking over planets, and having determined from orbit that this one was suitable, they initiate standard world-conquering procedure. Ah, but this time it's no mere primitives the Wersgorix seek to enslave-they've launched their invasion against Englishmen! In the end, only one alien is left alive-and Sir Roger's grand vision is born. He intends for the creature to fly the ship first to France to aid his King, then on to the Holy Land to vanquish the infidel!

The Hollow Lands

The Dancers at the End of Time: Book 2

Michael Moorcock

In which we find Jherek Carnelian, one of the small population of hedonistic immortals remaining on Earth at the end of time, still obsessively in love with Amelia Underwood, a reluctant time-traveller form Victorian England.

After narrowly escaping death in 19th century London, Jherek is separated from his love by several millenia, and so he begins a new, headlong campaign -- seesawing through time and space regardless of risk and consequence -- to reunite himself with Mrs. Underwood.

The Long Earth

The Long Earth: Book 1

Stephen Baxter
Terry Pratchett

NORMALLY, WHEN THERE WAS NOTHING TO DO, HE LISTENED TO THE SILENCE.

The Silence was very faint here. Almost drowned out by the sounds of the mundane world. Did people in this polished building understand how noisy it was? The roar of air conditioners and computer fans, the susurration of many voices heard but not decipherable.... This was the office of the transEarth Institute, an arm of the Black Corporation. The faceless office, all plasterboard and chrome, was dominated by a huge logo, a chesspiece knight. This wasn't Joshua's world. None of it was his world. In fact, when you got right down to it, he didn't have a world; he had all of them.

ALL OF THE LONG EARTH.

Clans of the Alphane Moon

Masters of Science Fiction: Book 3

Philip K. Dick

When CIA agent Chuck Rittersdorf and his psychiatrist wife, Mary, file for divorce, they have no idea that in a few weeks they'll be shooting it out on Alpha III M2, the distant moon ruled by various psychotics liberated from a mental ward. Nor do they suspect that Chuck's new employer, the famous TV comedian Bunny Hentman, will also be there aiming his own laser gun.

How things came to such a darkly hilarious pass is the subject of Clans of the Alphane Moon, an astutely shrewd and acerbic tale that blurs all conventional distinctions between sanity and madness.

Space Opera

Catherynne M. Valente

A century ago, the Sentience Wars tore the galaxy apart and nearly ended the entire concept of intelligent space-faring life. In the aftermath, a curious tradition was invented -- something to cheer up everyone who was left and bring the shattered worlds together in the spirit of peace, unity, and understanding.

Once every cycle, the civilizations gather for Galactivision -- part gladiatorial contest, part beauty pageant, part concert extravaganza, and part continuation of the wars of the past. Instead of competing in orbital combat, the powerful species that survived face off in a competition of song, dance, or whatever can be physically performed in an intergalactic talent show. The stakes are high for this new game, and everyone is forced to compete.

This year, though, humankind has discovered the enormous universe. And while they expected to discover a grand drama of diplomacy, gunships, wormholes, and stoic councils of aliens, they have instead found glitter, lipstick and electric guitars. Mankind will not get to fight for its destiny -- they must sing.

A one-hit-wonder band of human musicians, dancers and roadies from London - Decibel Jones and the Absolute Zeroes -- have been chosen to represent Earth on the greatest stage in the galaxy. And the fate of their species lies in their ability to rock.

Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions

Edwin A. Abbott

Flatland (1884) is an influential mathematical fantasy that simultaneously provides an introduction to non-Euclidean geometry and a satire on the Victorian class structure, issues of science and faith, and the role of women. A classic of early science fiction, the novel takes place in a world of two dimensions where all the characters are geometric shapes. The narrator, A Square, is a naïve, respectable citizen who is faced with proof of the existence of three dimensions when he is visited by a sphere and is forced to see the limitations of his world. The introduction to this Broadview Edition provides context for the book's references to Victorian culture and religion, mathematical history, and the history of philosophy. The appendices contain contemporary reviews; extracts from the work of fellow mathematical fantasy writer/mathematician Charles Hinton; Hermann von Helmboltz's "The Axioms of Geometry" (1870); and autobiographical passages from Abbott's The Kernel and the Husk (1886).

The Technicolor® Time Machine

Harry Harrison

Why pay for costumes, scenery, props or actors when the most brilliant drama of all time is unfolding before your very eyes, in vivid color--in 1050 A.D.?

Join the film crew of that stupendous motion picture saga VIKING COLUMBUS as they journey back in time to capture history in the making.

A Spell for Chameleon

Xanth Series: Book 1

Piers Anthony

Xanth was the enchanted land where magic ruled--where every citizen had a special spell only he could cast. That is, except for Bink of North Village. He was sure he possessed no magic, and knew that if he didn't find some soon, he would be exiled. According to the Good Magician Humpfrey, the charts said that Bink was as powerful as the King or even the Evil Magician Trent. Unfortunately, no one could determine its form. Meanwhile, Bink was in despair. If he didn't find his magic soon, he would be forced to leave....

Bears Discover Fire

Terry Bisson

Hugo, Nebula and Sturgeon Award winning short story. It originally appeared in Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine, August 1990. The story has been reprinted many times. Among others, It can be found in The Year's Best Science Fiction: Eighth Annual Collection (1991), edited by Gardner Dozois, Nebula Awards 26 (1992), edited by James Morrow, Future Primitive: The New Ecotopias (1994), edited by Kim Stanley Robinson. The story has been collected in Bears Discover Fire and Other Stories (1993).

Read the full story for free at Lightspeed Magazine, or listen to the podcast at Drabblecast.

Phule's Company

Phule's Company: Book 1

Robert Lynn Asprin

Meet the soldiers of Phule's company; the few, the proud, the stupid and the inept. These soldiers do more damage before nine in the morning than most people are capable of doing in an entire year. And since fate has a perverse sense of humour they are also mankind's last hope.

The End Of All Songs

The Dancers at the End of Time: Book 3

Michael Moorcock

Jherek Carnelian's return to the End of Time with Mrs. Amelia Underwood, his platonic love, occasions unbridled celebrations among the immortals, followed by a serious crisis, a spate of unorthodox marriages, and Jherek's and Amelia's choice of an unprecedented immortality.

Dream Park

Dream Park: Book 1

Larry Niven
Steven Barnes

They were all playing games.... but one of them was playing for keeps.

Chet Henderson was playing at revenge, an to boost his flagging reputation as a Lore-master.

Richard Lopez was playing to prove this his earlier successes as a Gamemaster were no fluke.

Ollie and Gwen and Mary-em and Tony were playing because it made them feel alive.

Alex Griffin was playing to protect Dream Park's darkest secret.

In Dream Park, everyone plays. But if some win, some have to lose. And losing can be a matter of life or death.

Fallen Angels

Michael Flynn
Larry Niven
Jerry Pournelle

As the world reels under the sudden onslaught of the new ice age, the lunatic fringe of the environmental movement controls the U.S. government. Abandoned by Earth, the space colonies must replenish their air supply by scoopships diving into the atmosphere -- but Alex and Gordon's ship was hit by a missile, sending them tumbling out of the sky to be hunted by authorities who want them dead or alive. . . . But wait! There is one pro-tech group left on Earth: science fiction fandom! How they get our guys from the permafrost to orbit in twenty incredibly difficult stages -- and why they bother -- is the story of two very "Fallen Angels."

From the Earth to the Moon

Baltimore Gun Club: Book 1

Jules Verne

Written almost a century before the daring flights of the astronauts, Jules Verne's prophetic novel of man's race to the stars is a classic adventure tale enlivened by broad satire and scientific acumen.

When the members of the elite Baltimore Gun Club find themselves lacking any urgent assignments at the close of the Civil War, their president, Impey Barbicane, proposes that they build a gun big enough to launch a rocket to the moon. But when Barbicane's adversary places a huge wager that the project will fail and a daring volunteer elevates the mission to a "manned" flight, one man's dream turns into an international space race.

Libriomancer

Magic Ex Libris: Book 1

Jim C. Hines

Isaac Vainio is a Libriomancer, a member of the secret organization founded five centuries ago by Johannes Gutenberg.  Libriomancers are gifted with the ability to magically reach into books and draw forth objects. When Isaac is attacked by vampires that leaked from the pages of books into our world, he barely manages to escape. To his horror he discovers that vampires have been attacking other magic-users as well, and Gutenberg has been kidnapped.

With the help of a motorcycle-riding dryad who packs a pair of oak cudgels, Isaac finds himself hunting the unknown dark power that has been manipulating humans and vampires alike. And his search will uncover dangerous secrets about Libriomancy, Gutenberg, and the history of magic. . . .

Just One Damned Thing After Another

Chronicles of St. Mary's: Book 1

Jodi Taylor

History is just one damned thing after another - Arnold Toynbee

Behind the seemingly innocuous façade of St Mary's, a different kind of historical research is taking place. They don't do "time-travel" - they "investigate major historical events in contemporary time". Maintaining the appearance of harmless eccentrics is not always within their power - especially given their propensity for causing loud explosions when things get too quiet.

Meet the disaster-magnets of St Mary's Institute of Historical Research as they ricochet around History. Their aim is to observe and document - to try and find the answers to many of History's unanswered questions... and not to die in the process.

But one wrong move and History will fight back - to the death. And, as they soon discover, it's not just History they're fighting.

Follow the catastrophe curve from eleventh-century London to World War I, and from the Cretaceous Period to the destruction of the Great Library at Alexandria. For wherever Historians go, chaos is sure to follow in their wake...

Job: A Comedy of Justice

Robert A. Heinlein

After he firewalked in Polynesia, the world wasn't the same for Alexander Hergensheimer, now called Alec Graham. As natural accidents occurred without cease, Alex knew Armageddon and the Day of Judgement were near. Somehow he had to bring his beloved heathen, Margrethe, to a state of grace, and, while he was at it, save the rest of the world....

Player Piano

Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Vonnegut's first novel spins the chilling tale of engineer Paul Proteus, who must find a way to live in a world dominated by a super computer and run completely by machines. His rebellion is a wildly funny, darkly satirical look at modern society.

Artemis Fowl

Artemis Fowl: Book 1

Eoin Colfer

Twelve-year-old Artemis Fowl is a millionaire, a genius--and, above all, a criminal mastermind. But even Artemis doesn't know what he's taken on when he kidnaps a fairy, Captain Holly Short of the LEPrecon Unit. These aren't the fairies of bedtime stories; these fairies are armed and dangerous. Artemis thinks he has them right where he wants them... but then they stop playing by the rules.

Flesh

Galaxy Science Fiction: Book 41

Philip José Farmer

Space Commander Stagg explored the galaxies for 800 years. Upon his return, the hero Stagg is made the centerpiece of an incredible public ritual, one that will repeatedly take him to the heights of ecstasy and the depths of hell.

The 1968 Doubleday edition (as well as subsequent editions) is a revised and expanded version of the 1960 orginal.

How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe

Charles Yu

National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 Award winner Charles Yu delivers his debut novel, a razor-sharp, ridiculously funny, and utterly touching story of a son searching for his father . . . through quantum space–time.

Minor Universe 31 is a vast story-space on the outskirts of fiction, where paradox fluctuates like the stock market, lonely sexbots beckon failed protagonists, and time travel is serious business. Every day, people get into time machines and try to do the one thing they should never do: change the past. That’s where Charles Yu, time travel technician—part counselor, part gadget repair man—steps in. He helps save people from themselves. Literally. When he’s not taking client calls or consoling his boss, Phil, who could really use an upgrade, Yu visits his mother (stuck in a one-hour cycle of time, she makes dinner over and over and over) and searches for his father, who invented time travel and then vanished. Accompanied by TAMMY, an operating system with low self-esteem, and Ed, a nonexistent but ontologically valid dog, Yu sets out, and back, and beyond, in order to find the one day where he and his father can meet in memory. He learns that the key may be found in a book he got from his future self. It’s called How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe, and he’s the author. And somewhere inside it is the information that could help him—in fact it may even save his life.

Wildly new and adventurous, Yu’s debut is certain to send shock waves of wonder through literary space–time.

Friday

Robert A. Heinlein

Friday is her name... She is as thoroughly resourceful as she is strikingly beautiful. She is one of the best interplanetary agents in the business. And she is an Artificial Person... the ultimate glory of genetic engineering.

Friday... not since Valentine Michael Smith, hero of the bestselling Stranger in a Strange Land, has Robert Heinlein created a more captivating protagonist... in a novel every bit as entertaining and exciting as this Grand Master of science fiction, now in his seventy-fifth year, has given us over his four-decade career.

Friday is a secret courier. She is employed by a man known to her only as "Boss." Operating from and over a near-future Earth, in which North America has become Balkanized into dozens of independent states, where culture has become bizarrely vulgarized and chaos is the happy norm, she finds herself on shuttlecock assignment at Boss's seemingly whimsical behest. From New Zealand to Canada, from one to another of the new states of America's disunion, she keeps her balance nimbly with quick, expeditious solutions to one calamity and scrape after another. Desperate for human identity and relationships, she is never sure whether she is one step ahead of, or one step behind, the ultimate fate of the human race.

Jennifer Government

Max Barry

Jennifer Government is Here to Help!

In Max Barry’s twisted, hilarious vision of the near future, the world is run by giant American corporations (except for a few deluded holdouts like the French); taxes are illegal; employees take the last names of the companies they work for; The Police and The NRA are publicly-traded security firms; the U.S. government may only investigate crimes if they can bill a citizen directly. It’s a free market paradise!

Hack Nike is a lowly Merchandising Officer who’s not very good at negotiating his salary. So when John Nike and John Nike, executives from the promised land of Marketing, offer him a contract, he signs without reading it. Unfortunately, Hack’s new contract involves shooting teenagers to build up street cred for Nike’s new line of $2,500 sneakers. Scared, Hack goes to The Police, who assume he’s asking for a subcontracting deal and lease the assassinations to the NRA.

Soon Hack finds himself pursued by Jennifer Government, a tough-talking agent with a barcode tattoo under her eye and a rabid determination to nail John Nike (the boss of the other John Nike). In a world where your job title means everything, the most cherished possession is a platinum credit card, and advertising jingles give way to automatic weapons in the fight for market share, Jennifer Government is the consumer watchdog from hell.

Jennifer Government is the kind of novel that can become a byword--a Catch-22 for the New World Order, a satire both broad and pointed, deeply funny and disturbingly on-target.

The Cat Who Walks Through Walls

Robert A. Heinlein

In The Cat Who Walked through Walls, Heinlein creates his most compelling character ever: Dr. Richard Ames, ex-military man, sometime writer, and unfortunate victim of mistaken identity.

When a stranger attempting to deliver a cryptic message is shot dead at his dinner table, this precipitates his marriage to Gwen Novak and sends the newlyweds scurrying to the Moon and then to the planet Tertius, headquarters of the Time Corps.

Ames is thrown headfirst into danger, intrigue, and other dimensions where Lazarus Long still thrives, where Jubal Harshaw lives surrounded by beautiful women, and where a daring plot to rescue the sentient computer called Mike can change the direction of all human history. A physical description follows...

Changing Planes

Ursula K. Le Guin

It was Sita Dulip who discovered, whilst stuck in an airport, unable to get anywhere, how to change planes - literally. By a mere kind of a twist and a slipping bend, easier to do than describe, she could go anywhere - be anywhere - because she was already between planes ... and on the way back from her sister's wedding, she missed her plane in Chicago and found herself in Choom. The author, now armed with this knowledge and Rornan's invaluable Handy Planetary Guide - although not the Encyclopedia Planeria, as that runs to forty-four volumes - has spent many happy years exploring places as diverse as Islac and the Veksian plane. Changing Planes is an intriguing, enticing mixture of Gulliver's Travels and The Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, a mix of satire, cynicism and humour by one of the world's best writers.

Table of Contents

The Butterfly Kid

Chester Anderson

It was a nothing-special Greenwich Village day...

And good ole Chester Anderson - sometime poet, rock 'n' roll singer and self-proclaimed kinf of the Village - strolled along, content.

Content, that is, until he saw a kid make butterflies.

Real butterflies. The kind with pretty wings that flutter.

What at first seemed amusing, if a little strange, quickly changed. Chester and his ragtag pack of singers, groupies and street-wise prophets had stumbled onto a mind-blowing phenomenon that threatened the whole world.

And only Chester an his ragamuffin crew could save it.

From what? From six-foot, blue lobsters from outer space.

How? With a horrifying plan that hinged on the innocence of... The Butterfly Kid.

Take Back Plenty

Plenty / Tabitha Jute: Book 1

Colin Greenland

It is carnival time on Mars, but Tabitha Jute isn't partying. She is in hiding from the law, penniless and about to lose her livelihood and her best friend, the space barge "Alice Liddell". Then, the intriguing Marco Metz offers her some money to take him to Plenty, and the adventure begins.

Martians, Go Home

Fredric Brown

THEY WERE GREEN, THEY WERE LITTLE, THEY WERE BALD AS BILLIARD BALLS AND THEY WERE EVERYWHERE!

Luke Devereaux was a science fiction writer, holed up in a desert shack waiting for inspiration. He was the first to see a Martian - but he certainly wasn't the last. It was estimated that one billion of them had arrived - one to every three human beings on Earth. Obnoxious green creatures who could be seen and heard (but not harmed) and who probed private sex lives as shamelessly as they exposed government secrets.

No one knew why they had come. No one knew how to make them go away - except perhaps, Luke Devereaux. Unfortunately he was going slightly bananas, so it wouldn't be easy. But for a science fiction writer nothing was impossible.

Remake

Connie Willis

It's the Hollywood of the future, where moviemaking's been computerized and live-action films are a thing of the past. It's a Hollywood where Humphrey Bogart and Marilyn Monroe are starring together in A Star Is Born, and if you don't like the ending, you can change it with the stroke of a key.

A Hollywood of warm bodies and sim-sex, of drugs and special effects, where anything is possible. Except for what one starry-eyed young woman wants to do: dance in the movies. It's an impossible dream, but Alis is not willing to give up. With a little magic and a lot of luck, she just might get her happy ending after all.

Farnham's Freehold

Robert A. Heinlein

A Robert A. Heinlein classic reissued with an all new celebrity forward by noted Heinlein biographer Bill Patterson and afterword penned by three-time award-winner for fan writing and science fiction scholar John Hertz.

It's a cross-time fight for freedom as a family retreats to a bomb shelter during a nuclear attack--only to emerge hundreds of years in the future, thrown forward in time by the blasts. There lifeboat ethics rule as they struggle to survive... until they're discovered by up-time humans, the survivors of the apocalypse. These survivors are of African descent. Down-time humans--in fact, all of the European-descended--are held guilty for the state into which the world has fallen and designated as automatic slaves. The only escape is to find a way back down-time, to change events sufficiently to make absolute certain this nightmare future never get a chance to happen in the first place!

The Stainless Steel Rat Returns

The Stainless Steel Rat: Book 11

Harry Harrison

After a ten-year absence, the return of one of the most enduring series characters in modern SF

James Bolivar "Slippery Jim" DiGriz, Special Corps agent, master con man, interstellar criminal (retired), is living high on the hog on the planet of Moolaplenty when a long-lost cousin and a shipful of swine arrive to drain his bank account and send him and his lovely wife, Angelina, wandering the stars on the wildest journey since Gulliver's Travels.

In this darkly satiric work, Harry Harrison bring his most famous character out of retirement for a grand tour of the galaxy. The Stainless Steel Rat rides again: a cocktail in his hand, a smile on his lips, and larceny in his heart, in search of adventure, gravitons, and a way to get rid of the pigs.

Davy

Tales of a Darkening World: Book 1

Edgar Pangborn

Davy, who relates his own story, was born in a brothel and raised in an orphanage; he travels in many directions, but always away from ignorance. His adventures are varied and range from tragic to boisterously funny.

And Another Thing…

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Book 6

Eoin Colfer

An Englishman's continuing search through space and time for a decent cup of tea...

Arthur Dent's accidental association with that wholly remarkable book, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, has not been entirely without incident.

Arthur has traveled the length, breadth, and depth of known, and unknown, space. He has stumbled forward and backward through time. He has been blown up, reassembled, cruelly imprisoned, horribly released, and colorfully insulted more than is strictly necessary. And of course Arthur Dent has comprehensively failed to grasp the meaning of life, the universe, and everything.

Arthur has finally made it home to Earth, but that does not mean he has escaped his fate.

Arthur's chances of getting his hands on a decent cuppa have evaporated rapidly, along with all the world's oceans. For no sooner has he touched down on the planet Earth than he finds out that it is about to be blown up... again.

And Another Thing... is the rather unexpected, but very welcome, sixth installment of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series. It features a pantheon of unemployed gods, everyone's favorite renegade Galactic President, a lovestruck green alien, an irritating computer, and at least one very large slab of cheese.

Galactic Pot Healer

Sirius Five: Book 1

Philip K. Dick

A powerful and enigmatic alien recruits humans and aliens to help it restore a sunken cathedral in this touching and hilarious novel.

Sometimes even gods need help. In Galactic Pot-Healer that god is an alien creature known as The Glimmung, which looks alternately like a flaming wheel, a teenage girl, and a swirling mass of ocean life. In order to raise a sunken city, he summons beings from across the galaxy to Plowman's Planet. Joe Fernwright is one of those summoned, needed for his skills at pot-healing--repairing broken ceramics. But from the moment Joe arrives on Plowman's Planet, things start to go awry. Told as only Philip K. Dick can, Galactic Pot-Healer is a wildly funny tale of aliens, gods, and ceramics.

Grasshopper Jungle

Andrew Smith

In the small town of Ealing, Iowa, Austin and his best friend, Robby, have accidentally unleashed an unstoppable army. An army of horny, hungry, six-foot-tall praying mantises that only want to do two things. This is the truth. This is history. It's the end of the world. And nobody knows anything about it. You know what I mean. Funny, intense, complex, and brave, Grasshopper Jungle brilliantly weaves together everything from testicle-dissolving genetically modified corn to the struggles of recession-era, small-town America in this groundbreaking coming-of-age stunner.

The Stainless Steel Rat Goes to Hell

The Stainless Steel Rat: Book 9

Harry Harrison

Brand new adventure of slippery Jim DiGriz, the SF superhero the TLS compared to James Bond and Flash Gordon and the Daily Telegraph, called the Monty Python of the spaceways.

While our anti-hero is taking it easy on the resort planet Lussouso, his wife Angelina and her cavorting pals are at the temple ofEternal Truth, being bamboozled into believing that at last they can buy their way into heaven. When Angelina asks 1 pertinent question too many, Slippery Jim suddenly finds himself without a wife.

Within the Temple of Eternal Truth lie the doors to Heaven and Hell - to find Angelina, Jim and his twin sons will have to break down those doors and explore the worlds behind them. In outer space, the devil makes work for idle hands.

Super Extra Grande

Yoss

With playfulness and ingenuity in the tradition of Douglas Adams, the Cuban science fiction master Yoss delivers a space opera of intergalactic proportions with Super Extra Grande, the winner of the 20th annual UPC Science Fiction Award in 2011.

Set in a distant future, after the invention of faster-than-light space travel has propelled a still-immature mankind into the far corners of the Milky Way, the novel features creatures of immense variety--amoebas that cover entire worlds, sensual females that feed on substances from their males' reproductive systems, talking reptiles, and other creations drawn from the classics of Cuban and international science fiction--all of which serve as colleagues, fellow adventurers, sex partners, teachers, or members of the military high command in the Galactic Community governing this part of the universe. Our protagonist, Jan Amos Sangan Dongo, has a special role in this otherworldly menagerie: He is a veterinarian who specializes in treating enormous animals across the galaxy. When a colonial conflict threatens the fragile peace between the Galaxy's seven intelligent species, Dr. Sangan must embark on a daring mission to enter a gigantic creature and find two swallowed ambassadors--who also happen to be his competing love interests.

Coupling his own extensive studies in (earthly) biology with his vast curiosity and wild imagination, Yoss brings us a rare specimen in the richly parodic tradition of Cuban science fiction.

The Number of the Beast

Robert A. Heinlein

When two male and two female supremely sensual, unspeakably cerebral humans find themselves under attack from aliens who want their awesome quantum breakthrough, they take to the skies—and zoom into the cosmos on a rocket roller coaster ride of adventure and danger, ecstasy and peril.

The Pirates of Zan

Murray Leinster

Because Bran Hoddan was a serious electronice engineer, he didn't want any part of his planet's heritage. For he was from Zan -- and Zan's only occupation was spaceship piracy!

Brain Twister

Psi-Power: Book 1

Mark Phillips

The fantastic story of a spy who could read minds!

Brain Twister - follows the adventures of FBI agent Kenneth J. Malone as he attempts to unravel the machinations of a telepathic spy. How do you find a telepath to catch the first telepath? A fun piece of sci fi that features claims of immortality, mind-reading, spies and insanity.