Sunday, June 17, 2012

Eric Frank Russell's "Major Ingredients" (ed Rick Katze) (collection): Annotated table of contents & review

Cover image of the short story collection Major Ingredients by Eric Frank Russell, edited by Rick Katze
Where I have a separate post on a story, link on story title goes there. Where I am aware of an online copy, I include download links too. My rating appears in brackets.

Table of contents (30 stories, best first, unread last).

  1. [ss] "Allamagoosa" (A); download; Astounding, May 1955; humor: Data fudging can have unforeseen consequences!

    Winner of Hugo award 1955 in short story category.
  2. [novella] "The Ultimate Invader" (A); Planet Stories, January 1953; space opera: Mythical intergalactic super-cops are out to enforce new war-free rules for space lanes! 
  3. [novelette] "Dear Devil" (A); download scans as part of a larger package; Other Worlds, May 1950; uplift: Humanity rises from post-nuclear-war apocalypse - with some external help.
  4. [novella] "And Then There Were None" (A); download; Astounding, June 1951: A gang of imperialists is frustrated by a planetful of Gandhian natives.

    Later included as half of 1962 fix-up novel "The Great Explosion".
  5. [novelette] "The Waitabits" (A); Astounding, July 1955: Different people run their lives at different pace. What happens when faster ones try to bring up the slower ones to their pace?
  6. [novelette] "Late Night Final" (A); Astounding, December 1948: A variant of "And Then There Were None", but with a very different ending.
  7. [novelette] "The Army Comes to Venus" (A); download as part of a larger package; Nebula Science Fiction, December 1953: Persistence pays. 
  8. [ss] "Jay Score" (A); Astounding, May 1941; thriller: A passenger ship on earth to Venus voyage is hit by a meteor, & is now headed for Sun!
  9. [novelette] "A Little Oil" (B); Galaxy, October 1952: Even precision machinery needs a bit of lubricating!
  10. [ss] "U-Turn" [as by Duncan H Munro] (B); Astounding, April 1950: State helps a bored man commit "suicide"... 
  11. [ss] "Diabologic" (B); Astounding, March 1955; humor: The art of driving other people nuts! And using it as a political strategy!
  12. [novella] "Hobbyist" (B); Astounding, September 1947: A stranded spaceman on an alien planet hasn't realized he's actually met god!
  13. [ss] "Top Secret" (B); Astounding, August 1956; science fiction, humor: Fun with data-corrupting communications channels!
  14. [ss] "I Am Nothing" (B); Astounding, July 1952: A ruthless dictator has a change of heart...
  15. [ss] "Tieline" [as by Duncan H Munro] (B); Astounding, July 1955; science fiction: Sole man on an entire planet that serves as a space lighthouse is very lonely.
  16. [ss] "Into Your Tent I'll Creep" (C); Astounding, September 1957: Humans have long been slaves of a master race unknown to them. And now this master race has used humans to spawn itself as masters of an alien race too - aliens that are friendly to humans.
  17. [novelette] "Basic Right"; Astounding, April 1958: Not read.
  18. [ss] "Fast Falls the Eventide"; Astounding, May 1952: Not read.
  19. [ss] "Homo Saps"; Astounding, December 1941: Not read.
  20. [novelette] "Last Blast"; Astounding, November 1952: Not read.
  21. [ss] "Meeting on Kangshan"; If, March 1965: Not read.
  22. [novella] "Metamorphosite"; Astounding, December 1946: Not read.
  23. [ss] "Minor Ingredients"; Astounding, March 1956: Not read.
  24. [ss] "Now Inhale"; Astounding, April 1959: Not read.
  25. [novella] "Nuisance Value"; Astounding, January 1957: Not read.
  26. [ss] "Panic Button"; Astounding, November 1959: Not read.
  27. [novelette] "Plus X"; Astounding, June 1956: Not read.

    I have, however, read its 1959 novelization - "Next of Kin"; very funny.
  28. [novelette] "Study in Still Life"; Astounding, January 1959: Not read.
  29. [ss] "The Timid Tiger"; Astounding, February 1947: Not read.
  30. [novelette] "The Undecided": Astounding, April 1949: Not read.

Fact sheet.

First published: 2000.
Related: Stories of Eric Frank Russell (annotated list).