Saturday, December 22, 2012

Poul Anderson's "The Live Coward" (short story, intrigue, free): Cop catches a fugitive

One of the illustrations by Freas accompanying the publication in British edition of Astounding Science Fiction magazine of short story The Live Coward by Poul Anderson. Image illustrates the public duel between policeman and the fugitive in front of the alien temple.
One of the minor stories with a colorful background that is generally quite readable.

Story summary.

A policeman needs to flush out a fugitive who's hidden himself among the rulers of a tribe. But he must do this without any collateral damage to those around the fugitive.

Set in a galaxy spanning human empire. The tribe hiding the fugitive is part of a backwaters planet with medieval Europe type ruling clique with constant clashes between nominal rulers & powerful priests.

Fact sheet.

First published: Astounding, June 1956.
Download full text as part of scans of Astounding (British Edition), November 1956.
Rating: B.
Among the stories from Astounding/Analog issues edited by John Campbell.
Related: Stories of Poul Anderson.