Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Isaac Asimov & Martin H Greenberg (Eds)' "Isaac Asimov Presents the Great SF Stories 16 (1954)" (anthology): Annotated table of contents & review

This is #16 of a series of 25 anthologies by these editors. This book collects stories first published during the year 1954.

I haven't read many stories yet; will update as I move through the book. Where I'm aware of online copies of stories, I provide download links. My rating is in brackets. Where I've a separate post on a the story, link on story title goes there. Link on a noun yields more of related stories.

Table of contents (17 stories, best first, unread last).

  1. [novelette] Tom Godwin's "The Cold Equations" (A); download text/MP3; Astounding, August 1954: An innocent girl is to be executed due to apathy of administration (according to author, due to nature's laws, but that's not how it comes across in the story). Intensely emotional.
  2. [ss] Arthur C Clarke's "The Deep Range" (A); Argosy (UK), April 1954: I haven't read this short story version, only its 1957 novelization. Among the better Clarke novels in my book. Novel is about taking agriculture to the seas - mostly raising whales as meat animals, but there are also other minor threads.
  3. [novelette] William Tenn's "Down Among the Dead Men" (A); Galaxy, June 1954: A team leader builds a team out of hostile recruits.
  4. [ff] Fredric Brown's "Answer"; download; Fredric Brown (Ed)'s "Angels and Spaceships" (anthology); humor: It's not safe to invent god!
  5. [ss] Mildred Clingerman's "Letters from Laura" (A); F&SF, October 1954; humor: A woman buys a time-travel tour to ancient Crete.
  6. [novelette] Alfred Bester's "Fondly Fahrenheit" (B); F&SF, August 1954: A man has the ability to unconsciously transplant his own violent nature to his robots, making robots violence prone.
    TBD: I appear to have originally rated it C. At this time distance, I seem to think a bit better of it. Will touch old posts later.
  7. [ss] Chad Oliver's "Transformer" (B); download; F&SF, November 1954: Anguish of a toy at manhandling she receives at the hands of her human kid owner!
  8. [ss] Richard Matheson's "The Test"; F&SF, November 1954: Not read.
  9. [ss] Damon Knight's "Anachron"; If, January 1954: Not read.
  10. [ss] Gordon R Dickson's "Black Charlie"; Galaxy, April 1954: Not read.
  11. [novelette] Randall Garrett's "The Hunting Lodge"; Astounding, July 1954: Not read.
  12. [ss] Donald A Wollheim's "The Lysenko Maze"; F&SF, July 1954: Not read.
  13. [novelette] Edgar Pangborn's "The Music Master of Babylon"; Galaxy, November 1954: Not read.
  14. [novelette] Algis Budrys' "The End of Summer"; Astounding, November 1954: Not read.
  15. [ss] Philip K Dick's "The Father-Thing"; F&SF, December 1954: Not read.
  16. [ss] Anthony Boucher's "Balaam": Not read.
  17. [ss] H L Gold's "Man of Parts": Not read.

Fact sheet.

First published: August 1987 (DAW).
Relevant entries have been added to the list of stories from John Campbell's Astounding.
Some of the bibliographical information here comes from ISFDB.
Legend: ss = short story; ff = flash fiction.