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The Trouble with Humans
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The Trouble with Humans

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  98 ratings  ·  18 reviews
Humans—there’s no understanding them, and no dealing with them either. Or even their planet. Pity the poor aliens, whose shape-changing ability should let them take over the planet Earth before the humans even know they’re there—if it weren’t for all that omnipresent pollution. Or consider another set of invaders, from a planet where the weather is always mild and the chan...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published August 7th 2007 by Baen (first published August 1st 2007)
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(showing 1-30 of 199)
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Almost restores your faith in anthologies. Bean has collected an enjoyable collection of mostly early Anvil human-alien contact/war short stories, mostly written from the alien's point of view.

While the setting and characters change, the style is consistently one of wry humor as usually technologically superior aliens stumble over their own assumptions when trying to conquer earth.

"Shotgun Wedding" published in 1960 sounds like a manual on what's happened to America in the fifty years since: bro...more
Product Description

Humans—there's no understanding them, and no dealing with them either. Or even their planet. Pity the poor aliens, whose shape-changing ability should let them take over the planet Earth before the humans even know they're there—if it weren't for all that omnipresent pollution. Or consider another set of invaders, from a planet where the weather is always mild and the changing of the seasons is hardly noticeable. They land in force and their weapons are more powerful than th

We From Arcturus - 3 stars, short and mildly amusing.
The Underhandler - 1 star, long and boring.
Duel to the Death - 1 star, it had some interesting ideas, but, I did not get the ending; read it several times, still didn't get it.
Shotgun wedding - 3 stars, reality tv as it should never be.
The Law Breakers - 2 stars, winning through inclusion and diversity.
Compensation - 2 stars, poor nontelepathic humans. How do they get by?
Merry Christmas From Outer Space - 1 star, an epistolary, blech.
The Plate...more
"grindy" Jake
I really had a love it/ hate it deal with this collection of short stories. Some of them captured me instantly and delighted me with some intelligent humor and commentary on the human race as a whole. However, I just wasn't feeling about half of them. This was a tough one to rate due to the fact that I ate up half of it but almost forced myself to read the other half. If you're someone who's into some classic sci-fi, touching onto some solid philosophy and psychology, I say go for it. Maybe some...more
The trouble with this book is that all the stories have a similar bend. The stories prove over and over that we're a resourceful bunch. Had this been an anthology from different authors I might have been uplifted to know so many minds placed so much faith in our ability to pull together in the face of a crisis. Coming from a single author has me, honestly, sort of doubting his grip on reality.

That being said, however, a lot of these stories are really quite fun and all of them are interesting an...more
Joe AuBuchon
Very uneven story quality.
Lee Riggs
Great anthology of sci fi stories by author up until now unknown to me. Some of the stories go back several decades, and there is an continuing theme of humans vs. Martians; civilized vs. uncivilized, but it is not always clear at the start which side is which. Some serious issues are raised (loyalty, self preservation, corruption, and war-mongering, to name a few) but there are also great moments of humor, and some Twilight Zone-worthy twists.
Doranna Durgin
I actually enjoyed the first several stories in this book very much, and was looking forward to the rest of it...and then it suddenly became etc, etc, etc...pretty much the same story being told over. I get that there was a theme, but variety is good, too... Disclaimer: I gave up after a certain number of "repeat" stories. It may have variety in the second half of the book, and a reader going in forewarned might find it worth it.
Michael Hall
This was a quirky and entertaining series of short stories about (usually) the exasperation of aliens having to deal with humans. Lots of wry humor over confusion and culture shock. Unfortunately, the running theme was often repeated. This anthology would have been better if more than one author had been involved.
This book is hilarious!

The general idea behind all of the stories is that, to an outsider, human culture can be pretty baffling. It's a collection of short stories about aliens coming to earth, and the various types of confusion and culture shock that ensue.

Comedy & sci-fi - a great combination in this book.
David Caldwell
Not as good as its sister novel, The Trouble with Aliens. Thr main problem is that both books share the same basic type of story. Humans outsmarting aliens. What causes this book to suffer is since you are reading from the losing side's point of view, you don't have anyone to relate.
Classic Anvil! Classic period! The only negative one can find is the recurring theme. This is more than compensated by the superb writing, especially characterization that transcends what passes for science fiction today.
Janine Southard
A bit hit or miss. The companion volume, The Trouble with Aliens was significantly more even (and better!)
13 short stories of human-alien interactions. Funny. The humans always fight off the bumbling aliens. These stories were published in science fiction magazines in the fifties and sixties.
Kevin Connery
Strong collection of Anvil’s work from the 1960’s-1970’s. Very much of a similar style, but still a lot of fun to read.
Short stories and novellas, some good, some so-so. Pandora's Planet was better.
Cheryl in CC NV
Pretty darn good collection of short stories about aliens....
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Christopher Anvil was a pseudonym used by author Harry C. Crosby. He began publishing science fiction with the story "Cinderella, Inc." in the December 1952 issue of the science fiction magazine Imagination. By 1956, he had adopted his pseudonym and was being published in Astounding Magazine.

Anvil's repeated appearances in Astounding/Analog were due in part to his ability to write to one of Campbe...more
More about Christopher Anvil...
Pandora's Legions Interstellar Patrol Interstellar Patrol II: The Federation of Humanity Pandora's Planet Rx for Chaos

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