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The Lights in the Sky Are Stars

3.66  ·  Rating Details  ·  91 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
Yes, I'm Max Andrews.
I'm one of the guys who fought and bled and worked to get to Mars. I figure what I gave up in those early years bought me the right to pilot the next big jump.
I've lied and stolen for that right. I'd have killed, too, but I didn't have to. Instead, I let a woman give her life so I could have my chance, my door to space.
You think I'd stop at anything,
Paperback, 149 pages
Published January 1955 by Bantam Books (first published November 1953)
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Apr 19, 2016 Sookie rated it liked it
Shelves: sci-fi-fantasy, 2016
I picked this book a decade ago from a pile of books that were on sale with neon pink sticker stating they were the cheapest in the store. I was attracted to the title and a passable blurb; politics and science fiction.

Brown's writing isn't close to his contemporaries or even his predecessors. The clunky dialogues are reminiscent of 50s thrillers which had communism, conservative politics, US-Russian space wars, lobbying etc. For a 50s book, thematically it gets quite contemporary in several ins
Florin Pitea
Jul 23, 2015 Florin Pitea rated it liked it
I read this back in the 1980s and I can still remember the protagonist's nickname: Max No Difference.
John Mccullough
Interesting to read a book published in 1953 about the wild future in the years 1997 to 2001. Lots of melodrama, an honest look at politics which is a dishonest trade. Casual predictions about what happened between 1953 and 2001, many accurate (demise of the Soviet Union), some inaccurate (vacations in Cuba, colonies on the Moon and Mars, a visit to Venus - hot Venus!!). And the thought of a rocket trip around Jupiter. Bad guys are the Conservationists who do not want to "waste" money on unneces ...more
Aug 01, 2008 Paul rated it really liked it
Set at the end of the 20th century, Max Andrews is a starduster, one for whom space travel isn’t a cute dream but an obsession. He joined the Air Force, from which space pilots would be chosen, just before the flood of people also wanting to go into space. Max has been in space several times. A freak accident on Venus, just before returning to Earth, has permanently grounded him. Max compensates by becoming one of the best rocket mechanics in the business.

One of Max’s friends, M’bassi, is the la
Originally posted here as part of the 30 Day Book Challenge.

I had no problem with this one. SUPER EASY.

A Book I Love That I Can’t Find On Shelves Anymore

Actually, I never once found it on a shelf. I found it in a box at a library sale. I think I paid a nickel for it. A NICKEL. Man, I wish I knew what happened to this book. It’s one of my favourite sf books that no one I know has read. [sigh]

Also, I refuse to pay close to ten dollars for a DRMed ecopy. No way, eff that. <.<

I am too tired to
Nov 09, 2014 Chris rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
It is the future; the year is 1997. Humanity reached Mars in 1964, five years ahead of its schedule for the first lunar landing, but space exploration came to a halt after reaching Venus. Max Andrews was one of the brave rocket pilots who opened up the stars, but losing a leg on Venus forced him out of space exploration and into the role of drifter and rocket mechanic. All that changes when he catches wind of Ellen Gallagher; word has leaked that should she win her bid to become a Californian se ...more
Jun 06, 2013 Hibido rated it did not like it
It's classic charm had appeal, as well as it's general divergence from the corny action packed SF tropes, but it's horrendous dialogue and just bad writing made me put it down.

Dated SF has never been a problem for me, sometimes it even gives it a charm I enjoy. Unfortunately my to-read list is big, I don't have time for bad writing.
Ian Nazarehth
Jan 11, 2016 Ian Nazarehth rated it it was amazing
In my opinion this is the best of Fredric Brown's science fiction novels. It stays away from all of the pitfalls of his other novels and even from the constant, never-ending cascade of mirabilia that normally makes up the genre to offer something refreshing.
The plot summary given on this page is in my opinion inaccurate. This novel isn't an action-packed thriller about getting to the stars whatever it takes but a melancholy first-person narration about how difficult it is. It is Brown's best wri
Mar 31, 2008 Fred rated it it was amazing
one of the great 50's juveniles, equal to anything by heinlein or asimov
Andrew Salmon
Oct 09, 2012 Andrew Salmon rated it it was amazing
Whoa! Where has this book been hiding all my life? I stumbled across a beat up copy of this masterpiece in a thrift store. I knew the name Fredric Brown of course -- what fan of hardboiled fiction doesn't -- but had only read one of his sci-fi efforts so was not all that familiar with his efforts in this genre.

Well, this novel is fantastic! If it isn't on a list of all-time best sci-fi novels of all time, it shoul be!

Max Andrews, the teller of the tale, is a space zealot. In his late fifties whe
Sep 17, 2014 Kadivs rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ziemlich 'meh' - man wartet die ganze zeit darauf, dass die richtige Story beginnt, tut sie aber nie. Man wartet auf den Jupiterflug, er kommt nicht. Man wartet zumindest darauf, dass er die Rakete mitbaut, tut er nie. Das ist mehr political fantasy als es science fiction ist.

ausserdem kann man den Hauptcharakter nur schwer mögen, auf den ersten paar Seiten wird einem klar gemacht, dass er ein Fanatiker ist und für seine Rakete auch jemanden umbringen würde.
Jun 01, 2013 Richard rated it liked it
This novel is the antithesis of action-packed, which surprised me as my sole previous exposure to Fredric Brown was through his very short short stories. Yet somehow this 149 page book realistically parallels the disappointment many of us feel about not living up to our childhood dreams, and how we deal with that. This is about Max Andrews's attempt to rectify his disappointment by leading a push for humanity to send a manned ship to Jupiter in the year 2000 (47 years in the future when this was ...more
Dec 12, 2013 J.P. rated it it was ok
Shelves: science-fiction
This is one of those novels that didn't age well. Like most science fiction authors, Fredric Brown was overly optimistic about the future of space travel. Written in the 1950s, the plot deals with an astronaut looking to be part of our first manned voyage to Jupiter. This doubtless read better when we were taking our first steps into space and the background established was considered possible. The author's writings were definitely hit or miss, with some excellent short stories and one of the fu ...more
Ed Vaughn
I read this as a kid.
Brendan Powell
Jul 19, 2011 Brendan Powell rated it really liked it
A fun fast read...great to read sci-fi from the past...I love the technology they envisioned in the future. Just a good classic sci-fi book.

This is the book that got my dad into Sci-fi...shaped his life (and mine)...looking forward to seeing what captured his interest as a also to read about the "Future" of 1997!
Jun 08, 2016 Michael rated it did not like it
Shelves: sci-fi
"It's twenty of twelve. Start your leave as of noon, twenty minutes from now." The whole thing was like this. Overly verbose, robotic dialog and a story that goes nowhere, but somehow still manages to implode.
Davey Rhebok
Davey Rhebok marked it as to-read
Jul 19, 2016
Hans G.
Hans G. rated it really liked it
Jul 09, 2016
Bob Griffith
Bob Griffith rated it really liked it
Jul 04, 2016
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Jun 09, 2016
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May 22, 2016
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Omar Gonzalez Pena
Omar Gonzalez Pena marked it as to-read
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Fredric Brown was an American science fiction and mystery writer. He was one of the boldest early writers in genre fiction in his use of narrative experimentation. While never in the front rank of popularity in his lifetime, Brown has developed a considerable cult following in the almost half century since he last wrote. His works have been periodically reprinted and he has a worldwide fan base, m ...more
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