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The Ginger Star

The Ginger Star by Leigh BrackettThe Ginger Star front
Ballantine Books, 1974
Price I paid: 90¢

WHERE WAS SIMON ASHTON?

Ashton had disappeared somewhere—somehow—on Skaith, and Stark had come to find him, no matter what the cost. Everyone on this exotic planet had heard of the strange Dark Man from another world, but no one was talking. Not the Farers. Not the Wandsmen. Not even the Irnanese. All clues led to the mysterious North—stronghold of the tyrannical Lords Protector. Stark was on his way, despite the price on his head…

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Star Ka’at World

Star Ka’at World by Andre Norton and Dorothy MadleeStar Ka'at World
Pocket Books, 1979
Price I paid: 35¢

Jim and Elly Mae travel to a distant planet as guests of Tiro and Mer—members of a super-intelligent race of Ka’ats. On this strange world, work is done by machines, which are controlled by thoughts from Ka’ats. But Jim and Elly cannot learn this power and become dependent on their hosts for everything—even meals! Determined to find their own food, Jim and Elly explore a nearby city where human-like beings once lived. But fierce robots now march down the streets. Tiro and Mer rush in to protect their human friends and are kidnapped by the robots. Jim and Elly must use all their courage to find a way to rescue the Ka’ats!

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The Rakehells of Heaven

The Rakehells of Heaven by John BoydThe Rakehells of Heaven
Penguin Books, 1969
Price I paid: 90¢

John Adams and Kevin O’Hara are graduates of North Dakota’s great Mandan Space Academy. Both trained to be conquistadors of space, explorers in an age of interstellar imperialism, Adams and O’Hara are as different as any two space scouts could possibly be. Now, together, they are sent to explore a distant world called Harlech. The Harlechians are unclassified aliens; relations with their women are strictly forbidden by the Interplanetary Colonial Authority. Adams is willing to play by the rules—but whoever made those rules hadn’t counted on the lusty Red O’Hara, rakehell of heaven…From the Adams-O’Hara probe, only John Adams returns.

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The Bird of Time

The Bird of Time by Wallace WestThe Bird of Time
Ace Books, 1959
Price I paid: none

When the first expedition from Earth arrived on Mars they were not greeted with open arms. Not only had the Martians long ago learned all they wanted about Earth—they wanted nothing to do with us. to quote their welcoming committee:

“You Earth people don’t know your own history. You have always been incorrigible. When Mars was younger, we drove you back to your own planet, whereupon you tumbled into savagery for a gratifyingly long time. The really intelligent Martians then emigrated to the ends of the universe to avoid a second encounter.

“In fact we are not interested in playing cowboys and Indians with your people.”

But Earthmen are incorrigible, and Martians are obstinate, and the result is an adventure-packed novel that spans two planets and several stars and is great science-fiction all the way.

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