Monday, January 22, 2018

Analog Science Fiction/Science Fact, August 1976

Due to a long serial, there were only three stories in this issue. All were pretty bad and past their prime.

Render Unto Caesar • short story by Eric Vinicoff and Marcia Martin
At first, there seem to be two storylines: one about someone sabotaging a spacecraft and another about Mercury. The plot lines eventually converge: due to high metal prices, the private miners of Mercury are facing a U.N. “invasion,” so they kidnap 100 children of powerful families. You should apparently feel sympathetic for the Mercurians. This was also a pretty badly written story. **+

The Tomkins Battery Case • short story by Bud Sparhawk

A lawyer is visited by a very affluent looking woman. It turns out that she is the wife of a man who was awarded a very substantial reward in a very unusual trial – he got the first fully mechanical legs and a substantial monetary award. But she isn’t looking for divorce; she has something else on her mind. This was short and very stupid - almost a shaggy dog style of story. **

The Far Traveller • novelette by A. Bertram Chandler

Apparently, this story belongs to a very long series I am not familiar with. There is some plotting and scheming on a planet with little or no space capability when a spaceship made from gold – actual gold, not gilded – lands. As the setting and the characters were completely unfamiliar to me, I didn’t get into the story at all. I did not finish this story. *

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