eBook - 2017
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A gifted gambler fights to survive on a hostile planet in this classic novel from the creator of science fiction antihero the Stainless Steel Rat. The gravity is twice that of Earth. The weather is an unpredictable maelstrom. All species of life, both plant and animal, monstrous and microscopic, are lethal. And the environment is drenched with radioactivity. This is planet Pyrrus, where telepathically gifted gambler Jason dinAlt has ended up after scamming a government casino out of a fortune. A small, fortified town stands against the nonstop natural onslaught, and its people are the descendants of hardened survivors. But there are some who exist outside the city--the "grubbers, " humans living in harmony with the nightmarish surroundings who share a mutual hatred with the technologically superior city dwellers. These people fascinate Jason because they share his psionic abilities. And with their help he soon realizes that Pyrrus is more than just a planet. It's alive. It's intelligent. And it's angry. From the legendary author whose novel Make Room! Make Room! was the basis for the film Soylent Green, Deathworld is "an action story with a built-in mystery" (Analog). This ebook has been professionally proofread to ensure accuracy and readability on all devices.
Publisher: [Place of publication not identified] :, Open Road Media Sci-Fi & Fantasy,, [2017]
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9781504045322
Characteristics: 1 online resource (278 pages)
Restrictions on Access: Access limited to subscribing institutions.


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Apr 16, 2018

I feel like its safe to say at this point that I have a certain affection for classic science fiction. There's just something about it that is very refreshing. Contemporary science fiction is so focused on technological advances, the state of the world, and epic space operas that they're just not as fun as they could be. Whereas with the older stuff, it might not always be believable, but it's adventurous. It takes you back to a time where the people's imaginations roamed freely, and there were still new worlds to discover.

Such is the case with Harry Harrison's Deathworld. Definitely unbelievable, but a gripping read nonetheless, Deathworld is a prime example of classic sci-fi adventure.

There are issues with Deathworld, and they're undeniable. Jason DinAlt is ridiculously lucky, incredibly intelligent, and brave beyond belief. And of course he can see what no one else can see. In short, he's the All-American White Man which pervades science fiction from that era. The one female that plays a role in Deathworld is absolutely gorgeous and dim, but trainable. Just like a good Labrador Retriever.

But there are also some timeless salient points, too. Like compromise, co-existing with nature, and trying for understanding over blind hate and fear. Especially the reinforcement that brute force is not the way to get everything done. This is especially true on a planet where you can't reproduce at the rate your species is getting killed off. I'm sure Harrison was at least partially influenced by what was going on around him at that time, but as I'm not into history I couldn't tell you for sure.

All I can say is that I enjoyed Deathworld for it's cheesy, adventurous, to-infinity-and-beyond story. From the first page to the last, even if you're rolling your eyes, you're still smiling in delight at the story that Harry Harrison has delivered.


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