Related to: 'Enigma from Tantalus'

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Threshold of Eternity

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

Because of a twist in the structure of Time, three strangers were brought unexpectedly together: Red Hawkins of California, Chantal Vareze of London and a man from the 41st Century. Their meeting seemed an impossible prank of a universe gone mad - but it turned out to be quite otherwise. For it seemed there was a war going on throughout space and time. A war fought by men of different epochs, on planets of different cultures, but for a cause that all could acknowledge - the very continued existence of creation itself. And the coming together of these three very unlikely people - a modern man, a lovely girl and a futurian soldier - was to prove the master stroke of a super-science strategy that had already brought humanity to the THRESHOLD OF ETERNITY.

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The Brink

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

Ed Carter, a New York reporter on his way to his home town in Omaha for a short vacation, saw the missile in the last moments in its journey back to earth. A sweller on the brink, like all of us, he had no doubt about what it was; Oh God, he thought, this is it. The blast of the impact flung him some distance, and when he regained consciousness, his first reaction was one of surprised to find himself still alive, and not, it seemed, even badly hurt. Presumably the missile had been directed at the big Air Force base nearby, and should have destroyed everything and everyone within a radius of miles. Could it have failed to explode?Carter sees the remains of part of the missile in an adjacent field and hobbles over to it. A minute or two later several Air Force officers arrive. They examine the remains, and find the burned-up body of a pilot. In other worlds, the missile was not Russia's first shot in the Third World War, but a failure to launch a man into space. But Carter knows that the Distant Early Warning line will have reported the missile; that the senior Air Force officers, in accordance with plan, will have taken to the air - in the country's interest, their lives must, of course, be preserved if possible; that by now the retaliatory American bombers will have passed the point of no recall; and that the Third World War has begun. Not so, Colonel Ben Goldwater tells him: "I called the bombers back."Goldwater, the man who had been left in command, has saved the world - for at least a little longer. So he becomes a world hero? Not a bit of it. On the contrary: a nightmare looms ahead both for him and for Ed Carter, and the reader watches it all with growing fury...

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The Atlantic Abomination

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner
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Meeting at Infinity

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

Allyn Vage was once a beautiful woman, but due to an accident - which may have been a murder attempt - she was now a hopeless cripple, burned and disfigured and without the senses of sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch. When they brought her to Jome Knard, that noted physician had no choice but to employ a certain apparently miraculous device, incomprehensible even to him, to keep her immobile body alive and to restore and regulate her sensory perception. This strange machine had been imported from a seemingly primitive people on the world of Akkilmar. They had allowed it to be exported, but there was something about it they couldn't - or wouldn't - explain. Little did either the doctor or his patient realize that between them they had now become the lever that could topple a world!(First publshed 1961)

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The Ladder in the Sky

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

The man in black picked up something which had been leaning beside him. A ring perhaps two feet wide . . . yet when the man in black laid it down on the floor it was as large as he was tall.The light went out. A bluish glow now emanated from the ring, revealing Bryda's face ghastly gray as she leaned forward, and Yarco's also, set and serious, and the conjurer's impassive.And within the ring, where moments before there had been the bare planks of the floor, a shape that moved, and opened eyes glowing like coals, and spoke.'What world is this?' the awful voice inquired.(First published 1962)

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The Super Barbarians

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

The Acre was the only part of an entire world where Earthmen were allowed to live as they pleased and as they were accustomed. For elsewhere on Quallavarra, humanity was forced into servitude by the Vorra, THE SUPER BARBARIANS, who has somehow managed to conquer space.But within the Acre, the underling Terrestrials had cooked up a neat method of keeping teir conquerors from stamping them out altogether. They had uncovered a diabolical Earth secret the Vorra couldn't abide - and yet couldn't do without.

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The Dreaming Earth

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner
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The Rites of Ohe

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner
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To Conquer Chaos

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

The barrenland lay on the face of the world like a sore, nearly round, more than three hundred miles in circumference. It had been there so long that it was endured, as were the twisted monsters that wandered out of the barrenland and killed. Conrad, living on the edge, had visions of a time when the barrenland was a rich region full of powerful, magical people-people who travelled to other worlds. He was ruled by a burning need to know what none could tell him: the explanation of the mysterious visions which had plagued him all his life. Then he met Jervis Yanderman, a soldier who knew of these visions. Yanderman was convinced there was an island in the barrenland where people still clung to life. And Yanderman knew that a man had come out of it . . . within living memory!First published in 1964.

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Telepathist

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

Howson was a runt. Twisted, ugly, crippled. The kind of guy people just didn't want to know. But when he took a deep breath, braced himself and projected his thoughts thousands of miles into space, they were all over him. Howson's telepathic powers were like nothing they'd ever known before . . . and he became the greatest curative telepathist in the world. But when they put him to work chasing people's nightmares deep down inside their minds, could they be expected to cope with what the runt found in there? More importantly, could Howson?First published in 1964.

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The Altar at Asconel

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner
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The Long Result

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner
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The Martian Sphinx

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner
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The Repairmen of Cyclops

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

The Corps Galactica, the Galaxy's police force, had pledged itself to a policy of non-interference with the backward Zarathustra Refugee Planets. Langenschmidt, the Corps chief on the planet Cyclops, was content with this ruling. After all, if the refugee planets could form their own civilizations from scratch, logically they would come up with cultures suited to their own needs.However, when the case of Justin Kolb came to his attention, Langenschmidt was forced to rethink the problem. Kolb's accident with the wolfshark revealed to the Corps' medicos the leg-graft that had been performed on him. It was a perfect match - only its gene-pattern wasn't Cyclopean, and limb-grafting wasn't practised on Cyclops.Where had the leg come from, who had been the unknown repairmen, and wasn't this something that might be violating galactic law?(First published 1965)

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The Squares of the City

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

Ciudad de Vados was the pride of Latin America - a gleaming city of the future where only ten years before there had been barren rock and wasteland. But Vados had problems. When Boyd Hakluyt was called in, his brief seemed simple: reroute the traffic to drive out the shanty towns that disfigured the city. It was an easy job - until Hakluyt found himself unwillingly involved in a web of deadly political rivalries. Then came the first murder . . . Hakluyt started getting answers to questions he hadn't asked. Too many people got too interested in him. And the pattern that started emerging was sinister, terrifying - and almost unbelievable . . .First published in 1965.

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Born Under Mars

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

When mankind colonized the stars, they travelled out from Earth in two directions - to Centaurus and its Southern Hemisphere neighbours and to Ursa Major and the constellations around Polaris. And strange to say the humans who settled on those various worlds began to develop into two differing antagonistic types.For Ray Mallin, born under the surface of Mars in the sparse colony of Earth's inhospitable old neighbour, neither the anarchic 'bears' nor the autocratic 'Centaurs' commanded his loyalty. So when secret agents of both galactic groupings suddenly focus their unwelcome attention on his most recent star-piloting mission, he knew only that something of vast significance was up - and that he unknowingly was the key to it.

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The (Compleat) Traveller in Black

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner
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A Planet of Your Own

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

Kynance Foy was young, beautiful, intelligent an highly trained in both qua-space physics and business law when she left Earth to seek her fortune in the interstellar outworlds. But she found that the further she got from Earth, the tougher became the competition from the environment-hardened populations of these young worlds . . . and by the time she reached the planet Nefertiti, she was facing poverty. Then, unexpectedly, a wonderful opportunity opened up for her: the job of Planetary Supervisor of the fabulously wealthy world called Zygra, where exotic pelts costing a million credits each were grown. The salary was huge, and at the end of the year's tour of duty she would be transported free of charge back to Earth, where she would be a very wealthy young woman. There had to be a catch to it, she thought as she signed the contract. And, of course, there was.(First published 1966)

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The Productions of Time

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

Until he became an alcoholic, Murray Douglas was one of Britain's leading actors. Now, after treatment, he's ready to resume his career, but his first come-back part isn't exactly what he thought it would be. The idea was to create an avant-garde play where the actors made up the script as they rehearsed. Unusual but hardly frightening. What was frightening was the rest of the cast. Like Murray, they all had some kind of craving. And each of them was given access to whatever had addicted them. It was doubtful if the play would ever entertain the public. But it seemed to entertain the director . . .(First published 1967)

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Quicksand

John Brunner
Authors:
John Brunner

She appeared in our world naked, defenceless, unable to say a word anyone could understand. Her origin was at first simply a puzzle, then a scientific enigma, and finally a series of terrifying surmises that her most fascinated investigator was afraid to probe. But probe he must, for somehow he knew that this strange girl was a key to the kind of information science had sought for centuries. But the more he uncovered from the depths of her mind, the deeper became the quicksand into which his own was sinking. (First published 1967)