TALES FROM THE PLANET EARTH: A Novel with Nineteen Authors by Frederik & Elizabeth Anne Hull--Eds. Pohl

TALES FROM THE PLANET EARTH: A Novel with Nineteen Authors

By
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Though hardly ""a novel with nineteen authors"" (short-story collections being notoriously difficult to sell these days), the 19 authors here, representing 17 different countries, do get useful mileage out of an old idea: humans who have their bodies involuntarily possessed by alien minds. Too, there seems to have been a backdrop editorial suggestion about a galactic conference (among aliens in human bodies) taking place in Hawaii, but not all the stories adhere to this. Some of the variations here are truly splendid. Brian W. Aldiss (England) writes with brilliant clarity and compassion of unthinking, insect-like aliens tunneling through space who are badly in need of a little human perspective. Tetsu Yano (Japan) contributes a wrenching tale of a pathetic madwoman crashed by the yearnings of an alien castaway. Jon Bing (Norway) describes a man isolated in the Arctic, plotting to defeat his alien controller via an advanced computer program. Josef Nesvadba (Czechoslovakia) posits a miracle-working alien who's mistaken for the evil ghost of a medieval sorceress. And Somtow Sucharitkul (Thailand) weighs in with a hilarious yarn involving exorcism, faked antiques, movie dubbing and what-all. And the remainder, while more variable in content and quality, all bring a special cultural viewpoint to bear on the subject. All in all, sturdy yams with an agreeable international flavor--and a refreshingly different approach.

Pub Date: Nov. 17th, 1986
Publisher: St. Martin's