Nothing happens in this one. We have the setup of a new experimental atomic pile and the threat of an invasion from outside the known universe. The one alien that does show up gets caught two thirds of the way into the book and then it dissolves into pages of moralistic wranglings. Should we experiment on this alien to find his weaknesses? Does that bring us to his level? To him WE are the monsters... etc. Finally they do experiment on him and find his weaknesses. Now they are set to meet the future threat. The book might have worked as a setup to a trilogy, but with the exception of the Val Stearman/La Noire stories, Fanthorpe never wrote any connected stories as far as I know.
(grade: C -funny dialog-)
A thrill seeking young "modern" girl gets involved with a nasty black magic coven. It falls to her long suffering boyfriend to gather a force and rescue her.
A drunk, a neatness freak, an oral hygiene obsessive, and an small furry telepathic alien must face and defeat the giant eyeball that is threatening our galaxy. Great story, wonderfully funny dialog, and hey... she takes a page and a half to brush her teeth!
(grade: A -funny dialog- -situations- -characters-)
A highly placed secret agent in an arabic country meets up with the members of an ancient pre-history Lilith worshiping cult. His girlfriend is kidnaped by the cult to ensure his cooperation, but of course this only makes him mad! The agent is helped by a good magic user who does not have a body of his own and must possess the bodies of others to do his bidding.
An ex-con gets more than he bargained for when breaking into the offices of a gold assayer's office. An office which turns out to be a front for an alien invasion. The aliens force his consciousness out of his body and turn him into a roaming spirit. Only the prison padre, the ex-prizefighter and the dancing girl can help him now!
(grade: B) You've gotta love a book with a sexy dancing girl named Chi-Chi Latour!
Formula 29X changes people into whatever they are told to be. An octogenarian under the influence of the formula takes on, and beats to a bloody pulp, a trio of trained hulking bodyguards. With help from the formula and two alien races, a power mad would-be dictator tries to take over the world.
|The Girl From Tomorrow|
A simple secretary on a trip home gets transported to an alien world where bug-like hive mentality creatures plan to put her on display in a bell jar. Lucky for her the package she was going to deliver to her father contained a can of DDT. She uses this to kill the bugs and on her way out accidently overturns an older bell jar, releasing from the preserving gas a native of Atlantis. He of course falls for her and they defeat the evil alien computer and the two go back to his home planet (you knew the Atlantians were aliens didn't you?).
An immortal goddess seeks the reincarnation of her former love and uses a menagerie of bizarre characters to try and get him back. Interesting plot point in this book is that the main character is a white male but the woman he's engaged to is black. Not something I expected in a book from 1962.
A powerful machine takes care of all the needs of the human populace of the planet. They have become so dependent on it that they cannot think or survive without it. Fortunately the machine is equipped with an automatic repair system, but what happens when the automatic repair system fails and the last engineer is dead?
I just couldn't get into this book. I tried three times to read it, but just kept putting down in favor of another book. Don't really know why.
A failing spaceship crashes on earth and then lifts off again after picking up two earthlings. They then crash-land on a planet where giant telepathic dinosaurs rule the primitive humanoids. If it weren't for the fact that the two humans were Val Stearman and La Noire, I would probably grade this book a little harsher. I enjoy seeing how many times Fanthorpe can describe the lovely La Noire as "Cleopatrine".
|The Last Valkyrie|
Daedalus and his son Icarus flee their homeland to the isle of Crete, home of King Minos. They become Minos' engineers of doom. First Daedalus makes the colossus of Rhodes to fend off the attacking Saharan navy. Yes, Sahara, like the desert. Then doesn't give the King of Rhodes the secret of using the giant statue/robot and it destroys itself and the king when they try to use it again. Then he punishes the Sahara people by drying up all their water supplies, making their country a desert. As an encore he destroys Atlantis, nuclear bombs Sodom and Gomorrah, and makes the Minotaur and labyrinth that Minos is so famous for. He and his son are now considered too powerful by King Minos so he orders them killed. They escape with their homemade wings, but as you know Icarus flies too close to the sun and his wax wings melt, plunging him into the sea. Daedalus swears vengeance and bonds with an ancient god of destruction. They then fly around for a couple of centuries causing every great disaster until they are accidently destroyed by a couple of archaeologists in our century. The end. Weird book, but I liked it a lot!
|Legion of the Lost|
This is my biggest disappointment to date. No funny dialog, the story goes nowhere, and the actions of some of the characters are very unbelievable. A roman soldier travels through time by the powers of his patron goddess Diana. He gets taken to a psych hospital where the doctors believe his story of time travel and just let him wonder away, but not before he has had a catharsis about what he needs to do when he gets back. Help the early Christians survive the dark times of the Roman empire.
|March of the Robots|
One of the best books for dialog and weird characters. Chapters are spent building up the character of "Ticky" George, who serves the function of confirming some evidence of the robots existence. Then after much (MUCH) planning, they get a man inside the blue electronic screen that keeps everything out of the robot's ship. He flings some gelignite (a form of dynamite) onto the computer, BANG, all the robots fall down. The end. Talk about a last minute wrap-up!
|The Mind Makers|
"Ten Little Indians" in space. The only survivor gets a serious head wound and total amnesia while taking out the evil alien that was the true murderer. He gets railroaded through the courts and sentenced to death. With the help of his wife he escapes and accidently finds an ancient alien machine that restores his memory and gives him sound advice about how he should proceed. Using the machine's suggestions he finds the evidence and clears himself.
Let me know what you think! Gumball (firstname.lastname@example.org)