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Book Title: Salvage in Space|
The author of the book: Jack Williamson
Date of issue: July 1st 2009
ISBN: No data
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Format files: PDF
The size of the: 867 KB
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Reader ratings: 5.9
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This is another wonderful pulp story of Science Fiction from the legendary Jack Williamson. Revered by all the great names in the genre, Williamson’s beautifully descriptive tales have fallen out of vogue in our time. This can mostly be attributed to Williamson never losing that connection to the pulps, and the sense that a writer was supposed to entertain. The man who became the Dean of Science Fiction when Heinlein passed away always had great movement in his stories, and this story published in Astounding Stories of Super Science in March of 1933 is a splendid blending of atmosphere, storytelling, and fantastic ideas for which Williamson was the master. The Grand Master, actually.
Even though this is 1933, Williamson has atomic rockets, magnetic boots, gravity plates, and an obviously pressurized suit called Osprey. Williamson also envisioned a being who could make itself nearly invisible. But it really doesn’t matter, because this story would be terrific even were it not so far ahead of its time. In around thirty pages, we have one of the most exciting and fun space operas imaginable within such a short length, and as a bonus, a sort of vague retelling of Sleeping Beauty.
Thad Allen is a deeply lonely space salvager not having any luck whatsoever, when he spots a great mass in the distant reaches of space. As it gets closer, he realizes it is a ship adrift. Taking a great chance, he abandons any hope of return in an effort to reach it, and he just makes it. What he discovers is evidence of great violence from within the ship. A little yellow dog, a diary, strange and fantastical specimens from other worlds, a beautiful girl, and something which may still be aboard the Red Dragon make this both exciting and romantic. Some of the prose borders on purple, but is all the lovelier for it, and the reader finds himself wishing that the trip to Mars would take about a hundred or so pages longer.
There are so many things underscoring this fun Science Fiction tale it is difficult to count them all. Suffice it to say, Williamson has subtly hidden some rather profound thoughts beneath the surface of this enthralling and atmospheric space opera. It’s the kind of short story you read for fun, and then as time passes, those subtler nuances begin to surface. The wonderful thing about most of Williamson’s pulp, even the early stuff, is that except for an updating of some technology, it seems just as fresh today. And when you dare look beneath the surface, it is just as timely. Wonderful stuff that can be downloaded and read for free all over the web.
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Read information about the authorJohn Stewart Williamson who wrote as Jack Williamson (and occasionally under the pseudonym Will Stewart) was a U.S. writer often referred to as the "Dean of Science Fiction".
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