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The Penetrator #30: Computer Kill by Lionel Derrick
Pinnacle Books, 1979
Price I paid: $1.50
Electronics wizard Hector Lattimer has at last figured out a fool-proof way to beat the system. Using his ingeniously designed portable computer terminal, Lattimer can tap into any programmed bank and authorize payment to his account. Then, in a flash of a diode, all data is wiped out—with no one the wiser…and Lattimer the richer.
Even the Penetrator is baffled—until he learns that the engineer is an embittered ex-employee of an electronics firm; a madman whose attempts at extortion have failed, who is now planning to destroy the entire works by automating a deadly device that will trigger an explosion.
It’s a touchy situation, and Mark Hardin’s number may be up—unless he can stop the bomb before it blows!
King of Argent by John T. Phillifent
DAW Books, 1973
Price I paid: $1.25
They told John Lampart that he would have to have his entire bodily metabolism altered to survive on Argent. Because that unknown planet was his most valuable find, he agreed.
He landed on Argent, golden-skinned and different. He had expected to find himself on a barren world, destined for two years of hard work. But Argent had life of its own of a different kind, weird, wild and endlessly challenging.
Not the least challenge to him was the discovery that his Earthly bosses regarded him as expendable—his work would end in his death while they got rich….
Spaceling by Doris Piserchia
DAW Books, 1978
Price I paid: $1
The ability to see the other-dimensional rings that float in Earth’s atmosphere was a late mutation of a few space-age humans. Daryl was under the care of the institution for muters, and she had discovered that if you jumped through the right ring at the right time it would land you in another dimensional world and another shape.
SPACELING is the story of Daryl’s desperate efforts to unravel the mystery of why she was being held captive and of what was really going on in a certain alien dimension. Because she was sure it was all bad and that someday everyone would thank her for the revelation.
But instead everyone was engaged in a wild effort to hold her down, to keep her on this Earth, and to keep the world simply intact!
It’s a fast and furious escapade of a future Huck Finn, female gender, by the author of EARTHCHILD.
The Destroyer #32: Killer Chromosomes by Richard Sapir and Warren Murphy
Pinnacle Books, 1978
Price I paid: I forgot
What happens when a lady scientist discovers a “key” to the manipulation of genetic patterns that keep different species from intermingling?
The lady becomes a tiger—of the man-eating variety. She is wild, beautiful, and deadly. And she soon decides that she must share her sinister secret with other women. The lovely killer genes multiply geometrically…and so does the fatality rate. The country becomes littered with chewed-up bodies. All men.
Enter Remo and Chiun—The Destroyer—the only weapon against this carnivorous cutie. Handsome Remo, fast on the chase becomes her prisoner—and love slave. Conspiracy and criminality fall into Remo’s usual area of operation. Genetic warfare and animalistic passions are something else again. Especially when the enemy looks like a Playboycenterfold!
So, as Remo is about to choose between going down in flames or up in smoke, Chiun sees a way to preserve the integrity of man’s chromosomes, and stay alive…something to do with the ancient Korean proverb about knowing which tale of the tiger to take!
The Unfrozen by Ernst Dreyfuss
Tower Books, 1970
Price I paid: Gift! I love gifts!
They lay together through the mist of countless centuries, while the Earth, the galaxy, the infinities of the universe shifted and resettled and changed again. When they awoke it was to an existence tranquil yet hideous, where human emotions had no place. Their love-making was viewed with suspicion and disgust. Now they were the outsiders, the throwbacks. Yet, with all their human imperfections, they were the only hope for a dying civilization.
I see Gondwane as it shall be in the untold ages of dim futurity, near the time when the Earth shall be man’s habitation no more, and the great night shall enfold all, and naught but the cold stars shall reign. The first sign of the end ye shall see in the heavens, for Lo! the moon is falling, falling. And there shall come a man into the lands, a man not like other men, but sent from Galendil.
The name of the man is Ganelon Silvermane—and this is the first of a new marvel-adventure series by Lin Carter.
If the universe is infinite, it follows that there may be somewhere real physical worlds that duplicate those of the imagination. And when Tom Carson caught sight of the third planet of 82 Eridani he recognized at once its resemblance to that imaginary Mars called “Barsoom” of the ancient novelist Burroughs.
Of course there were differences, but even so this planet was ruddy, criss-crossed with canals, and its inhabitants were redskinned, fought with swords, and had many things superficially in common with the fantasy Mars of the John Carter adventures.
But there were indeed vital variations that would eventually trip up the self-deceived science-fiction-reading travellers from 24th Century Earth. Therein hangs a tale that will delight and surprise everyone who enjoys the thrill of exploring a new world, especially one that seems peculiarly familiar.
Starsky and Hutch #6: The Psychic, adapted by Max Franklin
Spelling-Goldberg Productions, 1977
Price I paid: 50¢
HELP WANTED: A MENTALIST WITHOUT ANTS IN HIS TRANCE!
Two tough-as-nails jailbirds have snatched Joe Haymes’ beautiful daughter, and asked the football team owner for major-league bucks to get her back. He has signed up Starsky and Hutch to make an end run with the ransom—safely; one fumble and it could mean her life—unless the boys can find her first. Only a mind reader could solve this one, and the one they’ve got hasn’t a thought in his head!
The Great Brain Robbery by James P. Fisher
Price I paid: 50¢
Dennis Sands was just another college junior. Then, he learned that he had strange psychic powers valuable and needed on another planet. He agreed to travel to Ikonia, even though he didn’t trust Cynnax, disguised as a professor, who revealed his true identity as a being from another world in a distant solar system, a world that was on the brink of extinction. When Dennis got there, he realized why his psychic powers were treasured. And that the evil Cynnax and his perverted band planned to rob him of his brain.
Belaker Meas, agent for galactic control CROWN, did not really have any choice: He could spy for them—and risk a rapid death—or he could die, period. But slowly.
He knew going in that his job of Jsimaj was not going to be the gentlest in the galaxy, at lest not if he could judge from the ground transport CROWN had provided, “Pacesetter” was a rendal, originally from Jsimaj, a twelve-legged, armor-plated, fanged, clawed behemoth who was, totally and ideally (and significantly) adapted to his native planet.
But Pacesetter proved to be an affectionate, staunch, and gentle friend in comparison with the other inhabitants of Jsimaj…