Assignment in Eternity
"Gulf": in which the greatest superspy of them all is revealed as the leader of a league of supermen and women who can't decide on quite what to do with the rest of us. The prequel to Heinlein's later New...more
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I say surprisingly, not because I expect anything less from Heinlein, or that I think his earlier work is substandard (far from it) or that collections are an inferior vehicle (again - far from it, I am after all a fan of Bradbury, le Guin and Poul Anderson). I am very pleasantly surprised because these stories are tied together under a theme of humans reaching for superh ...more
I first became a fan of Robert A. Heinlein over a decade ago when I read his novel Friday. I went on to read Time Enough for Love and then ...more
1 Gulf Nov-Dec 1949 Astounding - Joe ...more
The second novella I liked more - it had an odd touch of mysticism, for Heinlein, although many other of his common themes. And the two short stories that comprise the rest of the book were enjoyab ...more
« L'uomo è più di un animale perchè ragiona; il superuomo e più di un uomo perché ragiona meglio ». Ouesta frase sintetizza la tematica dei quattro romanzi brevi riuniti in questo volume, uno dei più significativi apparsi durante la cosiddetta « Età d’Oro della Fantascienza ». Negli Stati Uniti dell’avvenire, le opposte forze del bene e del male si combattono sul terreno della facoltà parapsicologiche: sarà compito di una ristretta
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All but the last story focus on the idea of psychic or supernatural powers; the idea that, if trained, humans could think faster, react faster, use telepathy and telekinesis, perhaps even levitate and travel through time and space.
In Gulf Joe Greene is "converted" to the cause of supermen/women against evil, taking on an evil genius determined ...more
Gulf was my favorite story in the series. The characters were mysterious, the events depicted gave you an impression ...more
I should first state that these stories were mostly written during an era of optimism in American science fiction. There was strong, confident belief in the inevitable improvement of humanity, and that with technological advances, hunger, war, racism, and illness would gradually be ...more
Early Heinlein, for me, is a bit interesting regardless of its sly wit and occasional weak female characters. These were written in the 40s and were decent and entertaining but not up to the level of story Heinlein wrote in the Sixties and beyond, "Stranger in a Strange Land," etc.
This book is an anthology, all having something to do with the improvement of the human condition, and a bit of fantasy mixed into the science.
"Gulf" starts out as a spy novel, but then evolves i ...more
A word first about Bronson Pinchot as a narrator: Outstanding. Especially for Heinlein. He reads the characters as they sound in my head. He sounds older now, too, because he is, of course. An ...more
The first story is a great espionage thriller with plenty of excitement and skin of your teeth scrapes. I enjoyed the Babel-17 type language concept thrown into the middle which dragged the book into the realm of science fiction.
The second book is pure thought experiment, indeed the tale itself is ess ...more
"Gulf" is the precursor (tonally and, through a recurring character, literally) to the later novel Friday. Heinlein could tell a heck of a super-spy tale, as this story shows. It also highlights, in a way that later works obscured, his philosophical conflicts between freedom and respect for the individual as sovereign, and the elitist idea that there are Better and Wiser Folk who rightfully manipulate the others for their own good.
All four stories are related to Mind, and what Mind is capable of.
"The Gulf" follows a secret agent who discovers he is actually a superior human- and part of a select group of such. This group is trying to guide the rest of Humanity away from disaster as we 'normals' gradually evolve into Homo Superior.
"Elsewhen" tells about a group of college students who are taught how ...more
It took off well, the first story, "Gulf" was promising. I like fast paced action, so I followed the story with interest. Then the fast flow of events slowed down like a river leaving the mountains and spreading out wide on the plains. What fol ...more
The first short story, novella, novel of a different length, or work of fiction stuffs us into the mind of a high-functioning officer of the law whose abilities at serving and protecting earn him a higher calling of questionable morality.
Speculative fiction to make you feel like there is a subconscious that works the way the story says it does. A group of students and a philosopher make th ...more
Gulf (1 star) I been read this on and off for many reasons. This make the story hard to follow. In the end I didn't enjoy. The ending I felt over dramatic and rushed.
Elsewhen (4 stars) I liked this book. Its nice to read a time travel book with many characters and paths. The none believe was a great way to discuss things in the book.
Lost Le ...more
My second favourite is Lost Legacy, and you can see why, I suppose. The other two stories round out the volume well. ...more
1 Gulf - Joe Greene steals doomsday weapon plans, caught by bad Mrs Keithley with Kettle-Belly Baldwin, learns superman skills.
2 Elsewhen - Prof Arthur Frost and 5 students vanish - to other planets?
3 Lost Legacy aka Lost Legion by Lyle Monroe - Prof Phillip Huxley teaches student Joan and Dr Ben Coburn telepathy tricks, meets Ambrose Pierce.
4 Jerry Was a Man - Rich Martha Van Vogel indulges husband 'Brownie' Bronson with gene-created Pegasus, until he wants rescued ape slave Jerry s
He set a high standard for science and engineering plausibility and helped to raise the genre's standards of literary quality. He was the first SF writer to break into mainstre ...more