Review: Space Prison

The science fiction novel by author Tom Godwin was first published in 1958 under the title The Survivors. It was later published in 1960 under the title Space Prison. The novel is an expansion of Godwin’s story “Too Soon to Die” which first appeared in the magazine Venture.

A ship heading from Earth to Athena, a planet 500 light years away, is suddenly attacked by the Gerns, an alien empire in its expansion phase. People aboard are divided by the invaders into Acceptables and Rejects. The Acceptables would become slave labor for the Gerns on Athena, and the Rejects are forced ashore on the nearest ‘Earth-like’ planet, called Ragnarok. The Gerns say they will return for the Rejects, but the Rejects quickly realize that that isn’t going to happen.  But rather than dying horrible deaths, the rejects find ways to survive on the very inhospitable planet… and turn the tables on their captors.  Continue reading “Review: Space Prison”

Saturday Fun Stuff: Chapter 4 of Cyborg Wars

Continuing the Saturday Funnies, here is part four of my on-going Sci-fi tale.  Remember: this is offered just for a bit of fun.  If public opinion is that it holds any promise, I’d be happy to rework it and try it as a short eBook.  If it stinks… well, why waste the time?  If you want to start at the beginning [just click here]


Troopers Kim, Barklay and Rodrigues work quickly as they double check each others gear: body armor strapped on, photon grenades clipped to waist band and on safety, phaser rifles loaded and on safety, extra clips secure, Comm set on and working.   The ship is still at red alert yet the call went out for all ground assault troopers to suit up.   Barklay, the squad leader, notices Kim fidgeting.   It’s Kim’s first active G.A. mission.   Since Kim joined the squad, fresh out of the academy, they had participated in one boarding party against a Birdman ship, and called to stand ready in three other skirmishes, but saw no action in those.

“So, Kim, are you ready for your first taste of true G.A. action?”

Kim grabs his rifle and brandishes it threateningly, “You bet!”

Barklay smiles, “Good man.   Just remember; don’t get close enough they can touch you.    If they inject you, holler for one of us and we’ll off you.   If they get one of us, you do the same for us.”   A look of doubt crossed Kim’s face.  Barklay pressed the point, “Have you ever seen anyone get assimilated? Believe me, it isn’t pretty.   You would be doing me or Rodriguez a favor.”  Continue reading “Saturday Fun Stuff: Chapter 4 of Cyborg Wars”

Saturday Fun Stuff: Chapter 3 of Cyborg Wars

Want to Start at the beginning?

cyborg invasion,Our operative’s report included coordinates: coordinates which had been transmitted to the entire Birdman fleet as a rendezvous point.   Something big was about to happen.

There had been quite a debate over whether this report could be trusted.   It could be bait set out by the Birdmen to trap our best ships far from help, but discussion quickly dimmed the luminance of that possibility.

Hastily we pieced together an assault fleet and ordered them to proceed to the coordinates given.   The Executioner, a Dreadnought class battleship, was patrolling in my vicinity and I took command of her as my flag ship.   My fleet was scattered all around the quadrant, a well coordinated, cohesive assault would be nearly impossible, but we would do the best we could.   Continue reading “Saturday Fun Stuff: Chapter 3 of Cyborg Wars”

Saturday Fun Stuff: Chapter 2 of Cyborg Wars

Start at the Beginning?

Romulan Warbird, Star Trek, Paramount
via Paramount Studios

Wing Commander Ulan broods in her command chair, listening to the sounds of the war bird around her.   They are the usual unobtrusive sounds of a star ship in flight; the soft whoosh of life support, the small chirps and beeps of computer equipment as it tracks and monitors a billion circuits throughout the ship, hushed voices as her crewmen confer on this matter or that.   And under it all the deep, barely perceptible thrumming of her ship’s engines as they propelled her though space with unimaginable speed.   She has sat, listening, a hundred times before.   It’s a habit she developed when on important missions; listening for any small sign that there was a problem.   It’s silly she knows, the computers would alert her crew of any malfunction.   But still, she liked to feel in control, even while waiting for events to play out.

This mission was especially important.   The wing she now commands consists of every last war bird the Empire could muster.   Cloaked, and traveling at top speed toward a date with destiny.   Continue reading “Saturday Fun Stuff: Chapter 2 of Cyborg Wars”

Saturday Fun Stuff: Chapter 1 of Cyborg Wars

Long, long ago in a galaxy far away I used to play a game called VGA Planets.  It was a mult-player, on-line, roll-playing game of space conquest where each player had to build their race’s home planet’s economy and industry then develop space ships, then go and explore and, generally, kick butt to keep other races from over-running them.  If you were good, or lucky, or a little of both you could expand your empire.

I wasn’t especially good at it, but I enjoyed it so much I kept playing.  At one point, I decided to chronicle a game and create a story from it, posting the story for other players to read as the game progressed.

Earlier this morning on Twitter some of us were discussing the way as kids we used to look forward to Saturday morning and cartoons.  That conversation gave me the idea of posting part of that VGA Planets chronicle here each Saturday morning as a bit of fun.

Understand, that this was never slated for publication, it is not polished. It does contain references to and take-offs from most every Sci-Fi series ever made.  All characters are fictitious, so if the Romulan commander reminds you of your Aunt Mable, don’t go trying to sue me.  I never even met your Aunt Mable.  The images used are the artwork of various people I knew at the time and could not possibly remember now.  If anyone wants to complain, I’ll delete them.

Ready?  Here’s part one:  Continue reading “Saturday Fun Stuff: Chapter 1 of Cyborg Wars”