Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Galaxy Science Fiction, February 1951

A pretty average issue for this era of the magazine.

The Fireman • novella by Ray Bradbury
A novella which served as a basis for Bradbury’s most famous novel. Firemen burn books instead of extinguishing fires. One fireman starts to read the books he has been burning and soon starts to doubt his actions. His wife isn’t interested in anything but watching her TV shows and chatting idly with her friends about inane things. A good novella which can’t compete with the excellent later novel, which incorporates much of the same plot. The characters aren’t as well developed, the plot seems very hurried and the conversion of the main character doesn’t seem to be really motivated. A good story anyway. ***½
. . . and It Comes Out Here • interior artwork by Don Sibley
A man gets a visitor from the future who tells exactly what will happen - they will travel to the future and steal an early model of a device which produces limitless energy. The device was originally invented by the same using the design stolen from the future. A pretty standard time travel story. It is amusing how common smoking is in the future - it is mentioned several times. ***
The Protector • shortstory by Betsy Curtis
Stream of consciousness storytelling, a lot of made up words and apparently young women talking about dating or something. I didn't understand this story at all. Was there a point (or a story) somewhere? *½
Second Childhood • shortstory by Clifford D. Simak
One of the oldest men in the world where everyone is immortal is bored with his life. There is nothing new anymore for him. He decides to revert to childhood and apparently it is enough just to pretend to be a child to lose all your memories become a child again. Writing tolerable but the plot was stupid. **
Two Weeks in August • shortstory by Frank M. Robinson
A normal fifties office has one guy who always manages to be better in everything. Especially his vacations are always better and in fancier places than anyone else's. One time his workmates make up a dream vacation in the Mars imagining that that one cannot be topped. They are wrong, of course. A pretty silly little story. **+

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