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The Perfect Host (The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon #5)

4.24  ·  Rating Details ·  127 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
The Perfect Host" is the fifth volume of "The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon," a highly acclaimed series that brings together all the short stories of one of hte finest science ficiton and fantasy writers of the century. Included in this volume are such major works as "Die Maestro Die!," "One Foot in the Grave, " the title story, and a major discovery, "Quietly." Th ...more
Hardcover, 386 pages
Published October 1st 1998 by North Atlantic Books (first published 1998)
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Oct 16, 2007 Andrew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
theodore sturgeon is one of the best short story writers in science fiction ever, howver, his frank discussions of sexual taboos have helped keep him fairly obscure, even to science fiction fans. vonnegeuts kilgore trout was loosely based upon sturgeon, except sturgeon could actually write.
Feb 15, 2011 Terry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Quite the fine writer, this Mr. Sturgeon was. I enjoyed the patient unfolding of the story and the twist at the end. It had me asking, "Can he do this?"

Yes he did.

And that's a fine way to discover a tale well told.
Oct 13, 2007 Greg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Five stars for these stories: 'The Martian and the Moron'; 'Unite and Conquer'; 'One Foot and the Grave'; and 'Die, Maestro, Die!'
A striking feature of Sturgeon's writing that I haven't mentioned so far is its generous disregard for the principle "one basic idea per short story." He'd usually throw in two, three, at times even more; and all of them would sound thoroughly researched. The freshest example in my mind is "Farewell to Eden." There, we have:
- What would a piece of apparatus for restructuring the human body look like?
- How do you help people regain their memories?
- Why do intelligent beings discriminate against t
Sep 09, 2007 Raja99 rated it really liked it
Shelves: hardcover-s
Note: As with Thunder and Roses , the previous volume, the artwork on my hardcover copy doesn't match the artwork given here.

Amazon will be releasing the Kindle edition on 2013-04-16. I can hardly wait! (The hardcover is wonderful, but at this stage in my life, I find ebooks far more convenient and readable.)
Mar 17, 2012 Flower rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this book on my Kindle fire. I think I checked it out from library or bought it from Weird but good. Many thanks to author Cliff McNish for turning me on to Sturgeon. Looking forward to reading "More than Human" by Sturgeon, as soon as I can find it.
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Theodore Sturgeon (1918–1985) is considered one of the godfathers of contemporary science fiction and dark fantasy. The author of numerous acclaimed short stories and novels, among them the classics More Than Human, Venus Plus X, and To Marry Medusa, Sturgeon also wrote for television and holds among his credits two episodes of the original 1960s Star Trek series, for which he created the Vulcan m ...more
More about Theodore Sturgeon...

Other Books in the Series

The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon, Volume 1: The Ultimate Egoist
  • The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon, Volume II: Microcosmic God
  • The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon, Volume III: Killdozer!
  • The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon, Volume 4: Thunder and Roses
  • The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon, Volume VI: Baby Is Three
  • The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon, Volume 7: A Saucer of Loneliness
  • The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon, Volume VIII: Bright Segment
  • The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon, Volume IX: And Now the News...
  • The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon, Voume X: The Man Who Lost the Sea
  • The Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon, Volume XI: The Nail and the Oracle

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“Lutch Crawford always talked straight to the point. That’s how he got so much work done. “Fawn, about the other night, with all that moon. How do you feel now?”
“I feel the same way,” she said tightly.
Lutch had a little habit of catching his lower lip with his teeth and letting go when he was thinking was hard. There was a pause about long enough to do this. Then he said, “You been hearing rumors about you and me?”
“Well I—” She caught her breath. “Oh, Lutch—” I heard the wicker, sharp and crisp, as she came up out of it.
“Hold on!” Lutch snapped. “There’s nothing to it, Fawn. Forget it.”
I heard the wicker again, slow, the front part, the back part. She didn’t say anything.
“There’s some things too big for one or two people to fool with, honey,” he said gently. “This band’s one of ’em. For whatever it’s worth, it’s bigger than you and me. It’s going good and it’ll go better. It’s about as perfect as a group can get. It’s a unit. Tight. So tight that one wrong move’ll blow out all its seams. You and me, now—that’d be a wrong move.”
“How do you know? What do you mean?”
“Call it a hunch. Mostly, I know that things have been swell up to now, and I know that you—we—anyway, we can’t risk a change in the good old status quo.”
“But—what about me?” she wailed.
“Tough on you?” I’d known Lutch a long time, and this was the first time his voice didn’t come full and easy. “Fawn, there’s fourteen cats in this aggregation and they all feel the same way about you as you do about me. You have no monopoly. Things are tough all over. Think of that next time you feel spring fever coming on.” I think he bit at his lower lip again. In a soft voice like Skid’s guitar with the bass stop, he said, “I’m sorry, kid.”
“Don’t call me kid!” she blazed.
“You better go practice your scales,” he said thickly.
The door slammed.
After a bit he let me out. He went and sat by the window, looking out.
“Now what did you do that for?” I wanted to know.
“For the unit,” he said, still looking out the window.
“You’re crazy. Don’t you want her?”
What I could see of his face answered that question. I don’t think I’d realized before how much he wanted her. I don’t think I’d thought about it. He said, “I don’t want her so badly I’d commit murder for an even chance at her. You do. If anyone wants her worse than I do, I don’t want her enough. That’s the way I see it.”
“She peered out after a moment; he was staring fixedly across the cut, with his gun resting on his left forearm. He raised it abruptly and fired twice more, waited, shrugged, and then trudged off. Quietly sat watching him in utter amazement and disgust. Far off on the hillside she could discern the jerky motions of a rock-squirrel kicking and kicking its life away. The man had hit it with his first bullet, and had fired again as it writhed there. It was wanton; it was useless. Quietly felt no particular pity for the animal; she was not a sentimentalist, and had a scale of values for the lower orders. What offended her was the waste of a life, of powder, even of skill—the skill of the man himself and that of the precision workers who had made his weapon. He had not wanted the creature for fur or flesh, but had as his only apparent desire an affirmation of the evident fact that he was bigger and stronger and more intelligent than a chipmunk. Enter civilization she would, but not in the company of this pervert.” 1 likes
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