Since the beginning of time, the Onhla tribe had flourished amid the dramatic extremes of heat and cold on the planet Hraggellon. But now the race was on the verge of extinction.
Within its ranks, a mysterious, murderous malady was running wild. Meanwhile, from another galaxy, the spearhead of an all-conquering empire had made its initial penetration.
Only one hope remained. A youth name [sic] Hult, newly emerged into humanoid form after his animal childhood, and beginning a desperate, daring quest for the elusive key to survival that would take him to the most perilous regions of his world―across the unknown reaches of outer space―and into the most secret and startling depths of himself….
Thanks to the wonder of the hide, no one starves or freezes or gets sick on the perfect worlds of the Solarian Alliance. Like a synthetic skin, the hide protects and heals, and can transform people into anything they want to be. Nothing threatens this wondrous utopia until an extraterrestrial message of unspeakable horror is received. An evil race terrorizes the galaxy, and it’s coming toward Earth….
Into this world the Solarian Alliance frees Krim, the last survivor of the Beat asteroid known as the Jack and a prisoner since he saw his world vanish into that strange other space known as Ur. Disgusted with this utopia, Krim enlists in the distant fight at the edge of the solar system, the battle no one on Earth may know about, lest it disrupt their perfect peace…the Hidden War.
It wasn’t exactly a sound. It was more like a feeling―a gut-wrenching, universe-shaking, giant blip of a feeling. Then came the changes.
The legendary powers of Mike and Chester―fearless explorers of a thousand legendary worlds―are no help in handling the extraterrestrial perspective where time, space and sanity all find new meanings.
A perspective you too can discover with the help of
the unicorn girl
To Escape the Stars by Robert Hoskins
Del Rey, 1978
Price I paid: 75¢
…when freesailer, plunderer Jamas Oregas and his beautiful business partner set out to bilk the unsuspecting denizens of the backwater planet Llango.
IT GOT COMPLICATED…
…when Jamas, who knew the ins and outs of stargates, was doublecrossed and had to disappear―and fast.
IT MOVED INTO HIGH GEAR…
…when Jamas landed on Prime―a repository planet of galactic history―and learned of a mysterious lost race that held the master key to all the stargates for all the worlds.
AND IT FINALLY EXPLODED…
…when Jamas himself decided to scour the galaxy, looking for that long-lost race, following a trail that would lead him to power beyond his wildest dreams―if he somehow managed to stay alive!
The Solar Invasion by Manly Wade Wellman
Popular Library, 1968
Originally published in Startling Stories, 1946
Price I paid: none
It comes from beyond the fifth dimension―an alien intelligence both invulnerable and totally evil.
Its aim: bring the universe to its knees. Its primary objective: destroy the Solar System.
As doomsday rushes ever closer, one lone man dares oppose the creature from beyond. Only he can save the universe from a brutal, blazing cataclysm.
Zelde M’Tana by F.M. Busby
Dell Books, 1980
Price I paid: 90¢
Young, untried, but a lethally trained fighter, Zelde M’Tana found herself legally shanghaied by the oppressive UET―imprisoned on a starship bound for the brothels of a mining planet. There was no way Zelde was going to stand for that―and when the ship’s first officer, Parnell, led an anti-UET revolt, Zelde joined the mutineers and single-handedly turned defeat into victory.
First as Parnell’s lover, then as his assistant, Zelde was mistrusted by the crew―but when the UET struck once again and Parnell died, there was only one choice for Captain: Zelde M’Tana.
Pungent and vivid as its heroine, ZELDE M’TANA is a gripping epic of spacefaring, battle, and human conflict.
IN A WORLD OF THE NEAR FUTURE,
WHERE DECENT PEOPLE LIVE IN FEAR,
WHERE JUSTICE IS DYING AND
THE LAW PROTECTS THE GUILTY―
THE COMBAT OPERATIONS POLICE COME ROARING IN!
The bleeding heart lawmakers have taken lethal weapons out of the hands of the law enforcers―and in the world’s largest city criminals are on a perpetual holiday. Rape, murder, robbery, and sabotage are the order of the day. The answer:
COMBAT OPERATIONS POLICE
A special enforcement unit made up of the toughest, bravest, and most cunning street-smart fighting men, using the best in weaponry―including Andy Jumbles, an android, indestructable against bullet, dynamite, or laser. They are heading right into the deadly shadows of Manhattan to stomp the human trash that rules the dark―and give the city back to its people!
“A superior adventure-mystery about the strangely assorted crew of men and women, snatched out of their lives by emissaries from the far future, who fight and scheme to change the structure of time and history. Two unseen forces are at war in the Big Time, the enemy Snakes and the Spiders. The plot has suspense, but it is the personalities of the participants in the Change War, and the concept of the War itself that is fascinating.”
―P. Schuyler Miller, Analog
Two alien powers contended for that world. One, Eliff, had assumed a godlike identity; the other, Udrig, imprisoned beneath the polar ice cap, was branded as the evil one―the would-be destroyer of the planet.
Unknown to himself, Teron of Korv was the key to their conflict. If he could meet the right girl, the noble Eldra the Seventh, and if they could combine their powers―the fight would be resolved.
Against that meeting worked Udrig’s human agents, certain that the legends were wrong and Udrig was truly the Good One. In favor of the meeting was Eldra herself and the mysterious forces of the orbiting Eliff.
Guardians of the Gate is a space adventure reminiscent of the questing of Tolkien, the legendry of Merritt, and the action of Andre Norton.