The Time Traders by Andre Norton Baen Books, 2000 Originally published by The World Publishing Company, 1958 Price I paid: none (library book)
DRAFTED INTO THE ARMY OF TIME
Intelligence agents have uncovered something which seems beyond belief, but the evidence is incontrovertible: the USA’s greatest adversary on the world stage is sending its agents back through time! And someone or something unknown to our history is presenting them with technologies—and weapons—far beyond our most advanced science. We have only one option: create time-transfer technology ourselves, find the opposition’s ancient source…and take it down.
When small-time criminal Ross Murdock and Apache rancher Travis Fox stumble separately onto America’s secret time travel project, Operation Retrograde, they are faced with a challenge greater than either could have imagined possible. Their mere presence means they know too much to go free. But Murdock and Fox have a thirst for adventure, and Operation Retrograde offers that in spades.
Both men will become time agents, finding reserves of inner heroism they had never expected. Their journeys will take the battle to the enemy, from ancient Britain to prehistoric America, and finally to the farthest reaches of interstellar space….
(Note: This description is from the omnibus edition I read and therefore includes material referring to the second novel, Galactic Derelict. —Thomas)
Bone Wars by Brett Davis
Baen Books, 1998
Price I paid: $2.95
Montana, 1876. Othniel Charles Marsh, one of the two top paleontologists in the world, is in the state’s Judith River fossil beds, doing what he does best: digging up the bones of dinosaurs. Montana is a big state, but Marsh can’t rest easy. Edward Drinker Cope, his biggest rival, and the other top paleontologist in the world, is also in the area, and there simply aren’t enough bones for both of them, leading them to play dirty tricks. And time itself is against them: the fierce snows of winter are on the way and, rumor has it, so is Sitting Bull, fresh from his triumph at Little Big Horn.
Another complication: two foreign scientists are also competing for the bones. One says he’s from Sweden, the other says he’s from Iceland. One of them enlists Cope to help him, while the other befriends Marsh.
Marsh and Cope don’t want the fossils to leave the country, so they decide to bury the hatchet and work together to outwit the visitors. This turns out to be harder than they thought. The foreign scientists possess amazing technology, but that’s because they are much more foreign than they claimed. They don’t just want to take the bones out of the country—they’re fighting over who will get to take them clean off the planet…
The Long Mynd by Edward P. Hughes
Baen Books, 1985
Price I paid: 25¢
Not long ago, back in the 1980s, the world had not yet heard of charming. But then came a strange and godlike mutation that affected one child in a million. That child would grow to be a Charmer—one who could, by an act of will, change the form of any substance: coal into diamonds, play money into real money, iron ore into armor plate, water and uranium ore into hydrogen bombs—and the charmed item would appear wherever the Charmer wanted. The White House, the Kremlin, anywhere. It was the end of the world, of course…