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Little Fuzzy [Unabridged] (Fuzzy Sapiens #1)

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating Details ·  7,264 Ratings  ·  420 Reviews
The chartered Zarathustra Company had it all their way. Their charter was for a Class III uninhabited planet, which Zarathustra was, and it meant they owned the planet lock stock and barrel. They exploited it, developed it and reaped the huge profits from it without interference from the Colonial Government. Then Jack Holloway, a sunstone prospector, appeared on the scene ...more
Audiobook, Unabridged,, 6 pages
Published May 20th 2009 by Audible Frontiers (first published 1962)
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May 14, 2014 Lyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First published in 1962 and good enough to be nominated for the Hugo Award for best novel in 1963 (Philip K. Dick won that year with The Man in the High Castle) Little Fuzzy by H. Beam Piper makes me wonder how influential this book was in the 60s, not just in science fiction or even in literature, but in the 60s culture.

Working well on many levels, this is a fun story about Earth colonists coming into contact with cute little fuzzy bipeds, but also a serious discussion about what it means to b
Aug 20, 2015 Apatt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, pre-80s-sf
I remember loving this when I first read it as a teen, rereading it decades later I can see why I loved it then and why I am a little less keen on it now. The “Fuzzy” aliens are very cute, as shown on the various book covers, or if you visualize them from H. Beam Piper’s descriptions. They look cute and the act cute, they must be one of sci-fi’s most charming alien species. My teen self was indeed very charmed, my current self was reminded to make an appointment for my annual dental checkup.

Pepper Thorn
Jun 19, 2011 Pepper Thorn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First I'd like to say that this isn't really a review of Scalzi's Fuzzy Nation. It's a comparison of Scalzi's Fuzzy Nation and Piper's original Little Fuzzy. I came to both of these books clean, with no previous knowledge or biases. Although, in honor of full disclosure, I have read the majority of Sclzi's previous work and thoroughly enjoyed it. This is my first exposure to Piper but I plan to seek out more of his work as a result of this book.

I really enjoyed both books and if pressed I don't
Mar 12, 2017 Jim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi, 2fiction, 1audio
I read this before! Actually, I might have many years ago, but my main memories are from Fuzzy Nation by John Scalzi. It's been a while since I read that, but I'm wondering just how close a homage should be to the original. I'm also wondering why Scalzi bothered.

I thought this aged well. Sure, there were a few outdated elements such as typewriters, tapes, & developing movie film, but they weren't bad - just gave it a bit of flavor. I don't recall the discussions of sapience as any better, e
Jan 24, 2010 Bryan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf, series-complete
Yes, this book is a bona fide SF classic, but admittedly it hasn't aged that well. I first read this in my early teens, and just reread it this year after loving Scalzi's Fuzzy Nation reboot.

The original is a quick read, fast-paced and unforgettable, so it's still worth your time, but the characters do seem a bit wooden and stuffy (and often downright boring). This book introduces some of the politically-incorrect ideas that Scalzi avoided entirely, which permeate the sequel Fuzzy Sapiens to a
Aug 20, 2011 stormhawk rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The only thing that makes Little Fuzzy a science fiction story is it being set on another planet. There are no rayguns, only occasional mention of spaceships, no otherworldly technology that keeps the story going (I'm pointing this out mainly to suggest that people who don't ordinarily read science fiction might like this tale). Okay, there are viewscreens, and alien lifeforms, and mysterious bioreactive gems, and a colorful lie detector, but they don't get in the way of what's really interestin ...more
3.0 stars. A good, fast read that will make you smile. The tone reminded me a lot of some of Clifford Simak's work (i.e., down home, rural SF with a heart). Also a nice exposition on what it means to be a sentient being. A recommended classic.

Nominee: Hugo Award for best Novel (1963)
Aug 10, 2015 Jay rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Charlotte Jones
Jan 27, 2015 Charlotte Jones rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I picked this book up because I bought Fuzzy Nation by John Scalzi and found that it was inspired by this classic science-fiction novel, Little Fuzzy by H. Beam Piper.

This novel took me completely by surprise. At under 300 pages the amount of world building that happens is amazing; it isn't particularly extensive but Piper creates such a plausible human colony and system on a future planet and it made sense. The politics of the new world were fascinating and a lot of the corruption was what made
Jared Millet
Here's an oldie that I never got around to, but finally did thanks to the Scalzi reboot (which I haven't read yet - had to clear this one out of the way first).

Little Fuzzy is cute. Seriously, this has got to be the most soft-hearted, chipper, and downright adorable science fiction novel I've ever read. If that was Piper's intent (and I think it was) then he succeeded. In a era of rip-roaring pulp adventure, HBP took the time to write a gentle, slow-paced book examining the impact of humans on a
MB (What she read)
Apr 14, 2010 MB (What she read) rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to MB (What she read) by: The Whatever
Ultra enjoyable! Lovely little sci fi character-driven first contact story that I picked up and read in one setting. On to the next in the series...

I could tell that this story was completely plotted out before-hand. It was very tightly written with no red herrings or extraneous unnecessary material. As a reader, I respect that! And although first published in 1962, it didn't seem dated, except for all the smoking. (I don't think we'd exactly encourage teaching other species to smoke nowadays--u
Nov 15, 2007 Mike rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Mike by:
Shelves: scifi
4 fuzzy little stars for this throwback to the golden age of SciFi, where a complete story could be written in less than 200 pages. Little Fuzzy is not complex, the good guys (and girls) are good and the bad guys get it in the end. Looking forward to Fuzzy Nation and had to get this one done first.
Mar 20, 2015 Brady rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: speculative
Down-to-earth good guy finds a family of adorable furry animals and has to protect them from the evil Company who wants to kill them so they won't stop it from making money. Little Fuzzy is summer 2016's cutesy animated Disney flick, transmogrified into a brooding philosophical sci-fi novel from 1962.

Again, to wit: This is a space opera featuring small fuzzy animals. Good guys are very good, bad guys are very bad except (view spoiler)
Kat Klein
Nov 25, 2013 Kat Klein rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: worth-re-reading
I think I read Little Fuzzy about 30 or so years ago when I was in high school. I read it along with the sequel Fuzzy Sapiens and adored them. To me, they were right up there with L'Engle's Wrinkle in Time series. About 5-6 years later I got hold of Fuzzy Bones, which was the 3rd book, written for the series by a different author. H. Beam Piper having died, before finishing book 3. I can't quite express how disappointing Fuzzy Bones was. It almost ruined the entire series for me. However I spent ...more
Tomek Piorkowski
Sep 17, 2012 Tomek Piorkowski rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Little Fuzzy is an old-school sci-fi novel which still has relevant things to say about corruption, bureaucracy, and bending the rules to your own ugly favour.

The planet Zarathustra, at first thought nearly worthless, was sold by the interstellar government to a corporation, which discovered that Zarathustra had amazing mineral and natural wealth. The catch is, that if intelligent self-conscious life is discovered, then the corporate lease on the planet cancels with immediate effect. And that's
Feb 14, 2015 Chris rated it liked it
This was a decent little story that I probably wouldn't have ever read if not for John Scalzi's reboot, Fuzzy Nation. That book was just so awesome, I had to see about the source material.

Also, this audiobook was a surprise attachment to the Fuzzy Nation audiobook, so it was right there. Just press "play".

That said, this wasn't as entertaining. It was good, it's just that Fuzzy Nation was incredible. Scalzi did some things that were improvements on the original story. That said, there wouldn't e
Jason Seaver
Nov 12, 2009 Jason Seaver rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A classic science-fiction novel from the early 1960s, "Little Fuzzy" is an excellent example of the genre transitioning from militaristic, engineering-oriented action to something with a much broader purview. Indeed, it opens with a discussion of human-caused climate change, and spends much of its time in a courtroom, attempting to establish legal precedent.

As with many "Golden Age" authors, Piper's prose is crisp and efficient, a model of clarity that nevertheless establishes multiple character
Aug 07, 2011 Ron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great fun. Well told. Raises obvious, but intriguing questions about recognizing sentience in others.
Apr 08, 2015 Daphne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-audio, quest
This one was actually absolutely adorable. It wasn't deep, and characters weren't perfectly drawn, but there was something irresistibly endearing about it.
Got My Book
Nov 15, 2016 Got My Book rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Also posted on my blog Got My Book.

A classic Adult SF that stands up better than some but still has issues.

Little Fuzzy by H Beam Piper, read by Peter Ganim, published by Audible Studios (2009) / Length: 6 hrs 25 min

This is Book #1 of the "Fuzzy Sapiens," series and the only one available on audio. Note: two of the sequels were written by Piper, with some additional ones that were written by other people. There is also a "reboot" of this novel written by John Scalzi.

Mar 30, 2012 Denis rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: softcover, do-not-own
“Little Fuzzies” (1961), a Hugo nominee and considered a classic work of scifi by H. Beam Piper. It’s initial theme is of the exploitation of resources and the environment of an alien planet. It predates Ursula le Guin’s “The Word for World Is Forest ” by a decade. The secondary and primary theme is of the colonization and the exploitation of sapient indigenous peoples on an alien planet, making the point, intended or not, that the more “sophisticated” newcomers that come to a “new land” tend to ...more
Jul 09, 2013 Darren rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kat  Hooper
ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.

The Zarathustra Corporation owns and has been mining the planet of Zarathustra for years. They’re allowed to own the planet because it contains no sapient races. But when prospector Jack Holloway discovers a potentially sentient mammalian species, the Zarathustra Corporation may lose its charter and, therefore, the planet’s resources that they’ve been exploiting. What exactly are these little fuzzy creatures? Pets or people? It makes a big difference to Za
Casey Hampton
May 09, 2014 Casey Hampton rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf
Jack Holloway is a human prospector on the planet Zarathustra. As Holloway works his claim, he encounters an indigenous life form dubbed Little Fuzzy. These creatures appear quite intelligent. But if the Little Fuzzy proves to hold sapient intelligence, it'll cram a giant monkey wrench into the industrial machine that is planetary mining and mineral extraction. It's Little Fuzzy verses big money in this quaint 1962 SF adventure.

While H. Beam Piper's Little Fuzzy might show its age, its message s
Feb 10, 2008 Matthew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
"Little Fuzzy" is one of only two children's books I have held onto for my adult life, and like the other one I've added to my permanent library, I held onto it because it beautifully places complicated and nuanced issues in front of young children who otherwise would be reading cute (but tiring) morality tales a la 'Frog and Toad.'

Fundamentally, this book revolves around the question of to whom do we, as moral beings, owe duties? It is easy to look at your neighbor and agree that it would viol
May 15, 2011 Regina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book following the advice of other readers: If you're going to read both "Little Fuzzy" and "Fuzzy Nation", read them in that order so as to be delighted twice rather than delighted once and disappointed once. I have not read the latter, but having read John Scalzi's other works, I can understand the advice.

"Little Fuzzy" is an enjoyable, simple story simply told. It has a science fiction feel without focusing on the technology. Rather, it focuses on cultural, economic, and ethical
Dec 21, 2011 J K rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sweet story, has the harder grown up aspects, involving the humans and contrasts the innocence of the Fuzzy population, with the grittier and mercenary aspects of humanity in space. I loved how the 'Fuzzies' get the best out of the humans and few characters in this are really hateable, they're all just trying to find the best solution. I've marked it 3/5 as it's a great story but, for modern tastes, a little too talky in places and some may find it a bit slow moving. But if you're willing to giv ...more
Nathan Sims
This was another of my 'blast from the past' books -- things I read during my junior high/high school days and was feeling nostalgic to revisit.

This was as much fun as I remember it being and made me want to have my own fuzzy just like I'd wished when I was a teenager (Gizmo, anyone?).

What really stood out to me this time was the little man vs. much more powerful force capable of squishing little man (in this case a massive corporation). I'm realizing I seem to be drawn to these unequal matches
May 28, 2013 Hilary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf
I did read Fuzzy Nation first, so it's a little like seeing the movie and then reading the book (and therefore this review is a little backwards), but I thoroughly enjoyed both. Although the plot follows basically the same outline, there were enough differences and twists to keep me reading into the wee hours, long after I should have gone to sleep. If you've ever wondered about the definition of sapience, these two books will give you fairly much all the arguments (albeit with fake references). ...more
My father was a huge fan of H. Beam Piper, and when I saw (randomly) that Little Fuzzy had been recorded by Librivox I thought “what the hell, if I don’t like it I can shut it off.” I did not shut it off. I listened raptly, and instead of being bored with “vintage Sci-Fi” I found a new genre to love. Classic Sci-Fi is so different from what is Sci-Fi today. It seems as though all the authors of the time worked in an understood universe where there were hundreds of planets that the Terran Federa ...more
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Madison Mega-Mara...: "Little Fuzzy" by H. Beam Piper 1 2 Jun 01, 2013 10:41AM  
  • Brain Twister
  • Fuzzy Nation
  • The Pirates of Ersatz
  • The Butterfly Kid
  • Dorsai! (Childe Cycle, #1)
  • Planet of the Damned
  • Time for the Stars
  • The Tar-Aiym Krang (Pip & Flinx #1)
  • Bolo (Bolo #1)
  • Berserker (Berserker, #1)
  • Sinister Barrier
  • The Witches of Karres (The Witches of Karres, #1)
  • Fuzzy Bones
  • Who?
  • Davy
  • The Planet Buyer
  • Falkenberg's Legion (Falkenberg's Legion #1)
  • The Green Odyssey
Henry Beam Piper was an American science fiction author. He wrote many short stories and several novels. He is best known for his extensive Terro-Human Future History series of stories and a shorter series of "Paratime" alternate history tales.
More about H. Beam Piper...

Other Books in the Series

Fuzzy Sapiens (8 books)
  • Fuzzy Sapiens (Fuzzy Sapiens, #2)
  • Fuzzies and Other People (Fuzzy Sapiens, #3)
  • Fuzzy Ergo Sum
  • Caveat Fuzzy
  • Fuzzy Bones
  • Golden Dream: A Fuzzy Odyssey
  • Fuzzy Nation

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