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Earth is on the brink of catastrophe. The vital foodstuffs supplied by its Martian colony are being poisoned. Working in secret, the ruling Council of Science sends David Starr, its youngest member, to the Martian farmlands to discover the truth behind the murders...


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Earth is on the brink of catastrophe. The vital foodstuffs supplied by its Martian colony are being poisoned. Working in secret, the ruling Council of Science sends David Starr, its youngest member, to the Martian farmlands to discover the truth behind the murders...

30 review for David Starr, Space Ranger

  1. 5 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    David Starr, Space Ranger (Lucky Starr, #1), Isaac Asimov David Starr, Space Ranger is the first novel in the Lucky Starr series, six juvenile science fiction novels by Isaac Asimov that originally appeared under the pseudonym Paul French. David Starr, Space Ranger (1952) Lucky Starr and the Pirates of the Asteroids (1953) Lucky Starr and the Oceans of Venus (1954) Lucky Starr and the Big Sun of Mercury (1956) Lucky Starr and the Moons of Jupiter (1957) Lucky Starr and the Rings of Saturn (1958) تاریخ David Starr, Space Ranger (Lucky Starr, #1), Isaac Asimov David Starr, Space Ranger is the first novel in the Lucky Starr series, six juvenile science fiction novels by Isaac Asimov that originally appeared under the pseudonym Paul French. David Starr, Space Ranger (1952) Lucky Starr and the Pirates of the Asteroids (1953) Lucky Starr and the Oceans of Venus (1954) Lucky Starr and the Big Sun of Mercury (1956) Lucky Starr and the Moons of Jupiter (1957) Lucky Starr and the Rings of Saturn (1958) تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز هشتم ماه ژوئن سال 1997 میلادی عنوان: تکاور فضا؛ نویسنده: آیزاک آسیموف؛ مترجم: پیمان اسماعیلیان خامنه؛ تهران، شقایق، 1375؛ در 199ص؛ فروست داستانهای علمی تخیلی، 20؛ شابک 9645542103؛ موضوع داستانهای نویسندگان آمریکایی - سده 20م سری ترجمه شده ی «لاکی استار»، در شش جلد است، «جلد یک - تکاور فضا با ترجمه پیمان اسماعیلیان، انتشارات شقایق، نخستین نشر 1374»؛ «جلد دوم - راهزنان سیارکها با ترجمه پیمان اسماعیلیان، انتشارات شقایق، نخستین نشر 1375»؛ «جلد سوم - اقیانوس زهره با ترجمه هروس شبانی، انتشارات شقایق، نخستین نشر 1376»؛ «جلد چهارم - شبح خورشید با ترجمه شهریار بهترین، انتشارات شقایق، نخستین نشر 1371»، «جلد پنجم - اقمار مشتری ترجمه هوشنگ غیاثی نژاد، انتشارات پاسارگاد، نخستین نشر 1377»، و «جلد ششم - حلقه های زحل با ترجمه هوشنگ غیاثی نژاد، انتشارات پاسارگاد، نخستین نشر 1376»؛ در این سری ششگانه، «لاکی استار»: نام مستعار یک کاراگاه باهوش جوان، به نام: «دیوید استار» است، که همراه با دستیار مریخی خویش «بیگمن»، در بین سیاره های منظومه شمسی میچرخند، و با دشمنان زمین و تبهکاران مقابله میکنند ...؛ هرچند سری «لاکی استار»، در شمار کتبهایی هستند، که باعث نامدار شدن «آسیموف» شدند، و چند فیلم و سریال تلوزیونی نیز، برپایه ی همین سری از کتابها ساخته شده، اما از جایگاه علمی، دارای اشکالاتی هستند، که بیشتر به زمان نگارش کتابها، در سالهای دهه ی پنجاه میلادی برمیگردد، یعنی زمانیکه اطلاعات انسان، درباره ی سیاره های منظومه شمسی، بسیار ناچیز بود. با این وجود، اگر واقعیات علمی را نادیده بگیریم، شیوه های جالب، و شرلوک هلمزی «لاکی استار»، برای حل معماها، و به دام انداختن تبهکاران فضایی، ارزش خوانش آنها را بیشتر میکند. هنوز هم گاه برای خوشایند لبخندم آنها را میخوانم؛ ا. شربیانی

  2. 5 out of 5

    Kylie

    David Starr, Space Ranger was the first of the Lucky Starr books I found in my Dad's collection -- I had already eaten through all the Robot/Foundation novels from Asimov by this stage, and the Lens Men by E.E.Doc Smith -- and I just kept looking through all the old battered books. My Dad's editions are actually the editions in which Asimov went under a pseudonym, though I later went out and bought other editions from second hand bookshops to add to my own collection. I adored David Starr, I ado David Starr, Space Ranger was the first of the Lucky Starr books I found in my Dad's collection -- I had already eaten through all the Robot/Foundation novels from Asimov by this stage, and the Lens Men by E.E.Doc Smith -- and I just kept looking through all the old battered books. My Dad's editions are actually the editions in which Asimov went under a pseudonym, though I later went out and bought other editions from second hand bookshops to add to my own collection. I adored David Starr, I adored how perfect he was. Maybe today we would call David Starr a Gary Stu or a Marty Stu, because he truly fits that mold but you know what, I didn't care and I still don't care! In fact, I wish books were still written with these types of character archetypes. Why? Because it's entertainment, it is fantastical, it is escapism and it is fun. What Asimov created in David Starr, Space Ranger was a character and a story that was simple, straight forward, fast and exciting. I envision this story rather like a movie, because if you have the right type of imagination, Asimov's beautiful writing style in its un-descriptive manner, will allow your mind to fill-in-the-blanks. I truly wish I could find more science fiction like this today. That isn't afraid to have larger than life characters who will never be real. Because I believe it is okay to have unrealistic characters every now and then, that allow us to transport ourselves away from reality, and dream of Space Rangers. So if you are looking for a space adventure, a plot that is simple, but an enjoyable read because seriously, anything Asimov is enjoyable, then I really would pick up David Starr, Space Ranger -- because everyone needs a Space Ranger in their imagination.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Timothy Darling

    This story is truly a product of its times, and I suspect Asimov, though most authors would never admit this, was somewhat embarrassed by it. I've not seen why he used a pseudonym for this series, but I could guess. It, like Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, and Tom Corbett behaves like a serial children's novel. It is part SF, part mystery, and part superhero story. Since the superhero element is so close to the crisis of the story, I won't reveal it, but suffice it to say that it is a gimmick that might This story is truly a product of its times, and I suspect Asimov, though most authors would never admit this, was somewhat embarrassed by it. I've not seen why he used a pseudonym for this series, but I could guess. It, like Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, and Tom Corbett behaves like a serial children's novel. It is part SF, part mystery, and part superhero story. Since the superhero element is so close to the crisis of the story, I won't reveal it, but suffice it to say that it is a gimmick that might work for children (not young adults) but most grown ups will shake their heads and, if they are the indulgent type, smile. David Starr is the kind of clean-cut hero parents of the 1950s wanted to see their kids reading. The closest we get to a female character is a disembodied voice. The story is almost as if men spontaneously generated from the thin Martian dust. On the other hand, Starr is too smart for his adult manipulators. The Council of Science leaders try to manipulate him, but he is on to them and does what they want anyway, confident that he can carry off the program and still maintain secrecy. Likewise, the Council Rep on Mars is uncertain of this young man he has been ordered to trust, and is confused every step of the way, till Starr saves the day. Finally, his origins in a tragic loss of his parents and an extended time in space being bombarded by cosmic rays gives him the feel of a proto-Fantastic Four character, cum messiah. Who is this young man, where did he come from, and how did he become such a prodigy? In the edition I read, Asimov entered a preface not quite apologizing for the outdated Mars science. By now, anyone reading a Mars story written before the 1970s knows they are reading a mythology more than science. In those days, with inadequate instrumentation, scientists were interpreting the planets as best they could using equal parts science and wishful thinking. Nobody expects Kim Stanley Robinson's Red Mars from a 50s Asimov or an ERB. These storys do not, though they should, serve to humble our trust in science. Scientists thought they were giving answers when all they were really doing was their best under the circumstances. That's all they're still doing. I hate to say it, (goodness knows, I like books too much to be a negative reviewer) but Asimov will probably not last. Certainly David starr will not. Our culture has moved on to a more dynamic and a darker serial protagonist. Kids are not so naive as to think the Space Ranger can come through. However, if they're young enough, they might enjoy it, if they can get through the tech. So, perhaps reading Starr aloud to your elementary kids is about where we can expect this book to find a niche. I might read two more because I bought them, or I might just sell the whole pack to a used book store.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Ozymandias

    It’s been a long while since I read any new books by Asimov. He was one of my favorite authors as a kid so there aren’t many of his I haven’t read, but I always turned aside the Lucky Starr books. I think it just looked too much like pure pulp unenlivened by his always-interesting big ideas. And I think that was a fair-enough assessment, although his other books (at least the pre-‘80s ones) were a lot more pulpy than I noticed at the time. Stylistically this book is exactly what you want from ‘50 It’s been a long while since I read any new books by Asimov. He was one of my favorite authors as a kid so there aren’t many of his I haven’t read, but I always turned aside the Lucky Starr books. I think it just looked too much like pure pulp unenlivened by his always-interesting big ideas. And I think that was a fair-enough assessment, although his other books (at least the pre-‘80s ones) were a lot more pulpy than I noticed at the time. Stylistically this book is exactly what you want from ‘50s pulp scifi. Forcefields, blasters, and private spaceships appear alongside physical telegrams, microfilm, push-button controls, spectacles, etc. Radiation is still a magical device that can justify absolutely anything. Martians make sense and so does telepathy. Towards the end we get into superhero territory that sounds likes something out of Green Lantern, or rather, given the likely source of the story idea, from Lensman. The cheese factor is through the roof. Starr is literally working for the Council of Science which unofficially rules the planet. Crazy right? I mean, can you imagine a world it which scientifically-validated research has an actual effect on public opinion? Madness. Starr is basically James Bond in space but without the transgressive qualities and with all the sexual energy of a dead brick wrapped in an emotionally unfulfilled lead condom. Perfect in every way, clean-shaven and morally pure enough to win the approval of ’50s parents, he is one step ahead of everyone else at all times. This is the opposite of how a good adventure story should go and the opposite of Asimov’s best characters too. Imagine how boring it would be if Lije Bailey was never wrong or in real danger of failing. Some of the other characters are entertaining. Chief among side characters is a small man called Bigman (haha) who serves as a comic relief/sidekick. He strikes me as a Boy Wonder type for all that he’s supposed to be a full-grown man. None of the rest really get sufficient development or characterization to stick in the memory. The villain is obvious to anyone who’s read a mystery novel, but only because of the role he fills in the story and not because his involvement or plan makes any sense. The book’s threat is clear enough: random Martian-grown foodstuffs are being poisoned by unknown conspirators. It’s an interesting scheme: frame Mars for random killings and cripple their economy while stoking Earther-Martian tensions and dividing the governments for the benefit of unknown parties. Except... well. That’s not the consequence being dreaded. The fear is that this will cause Earth’s population to starve to death. Yeah. Somehow fear of dying by fast-acting poison will overrule fear of death by slow starvation. I mean, it might make sense if it was done in some numbers but we’re talking about 200 people out of five billion spread out over several months and continents and killed in secret. Starvation is not a consequence that can be taken seriously. So the politics of this are rather crap and short-sighted. I’ll confess to being disappointed that someone as clear-sighted over the consequences of technological changes and individual reactions can be so remarkably oblivious to obvious political consequences and group behaviors. And it makes even less sense once the big secret has been revealed. In fact, I kept waiting for something deeper to appear beneath the apparently childish plan since it seemed impossible that this conspiracy couldn’t be tracked down in a matter of hours. Even without computers. I’ve got to be honest: looking back at these scifi masterpieces is a little uncomfortable. The absence of any female characters is at least understandable considering the contemporary situation (props to Asimov for Susan Calvin at least, who’s not only the lead of I, Robot, at least until the film replaced her with a charismatic black man in a preview of the 2008 election, but also the most successful roboticist on the planet) but the assumption that the human future will be lily white is icky given that any such future would have to require the eternal marginalization or ethnic cleansing of non-Western ethnicities. It’s an unspoken ethnochauvinism that seems particularly grating seeing how directly Star Trek, the first serious television scifi program, was to confront it. It did not have to be this way in the ’50s either. More worrying to me is the creepily fascistic ends-justify-means sort of ethos pervading these stories. It’s not just an occasional instance either but a recurring theme that extreme actions taken by intellectually-enlightened individuals are necessary and just (I still remember my Foundation course: “you must never let what is moral prevent you from doing what is right”). Pretty much every one of his heroes (certainly Starr) is an übermensch, capable of shifting the entire course of human civilization through his superior will and understanding and who can’t be constrained by conventional morality. I suppose this is a result of a craving for personal motivations over more complicated political theories, but it does make me think of The Iron Dream, which basically sends a big middle finger to these types of stories by writing one from the point of view of Hitler and showing just how few changes are necessary to turn space opera/high fantasy into Nazi propaganda. Sort of like Starship Troopers (the film at least) but even more cutting. So I didn’t really like this book. It may have worked better as a serial, but I think that in any format this book would be considered silly. Which wouldn’t be too bad except that it’s mundane silliness. Many of the cliches being used (Martians, telepathy...) aren’t even interesting cliches and those that do still entertain are not utilized as well as they are in other novels. In some ways the book is actually too grounded, as the Solar System-limited story never quite lets us divorce ourself from all reality the way a grand galactic empire can. And Lucky Starr (or Space Ranger) is just a fantastically dull character. At least other pulp heroes had character faults and personality traits beyond being young and spunky and the destined child of destiny. On the whole, unless you’re really obsessed with Silver Age space opera, it’s probably best to give this a miss. Try the Ensign Flandry series by Poul Anderson (whose hero is at least lovable roguish) or Lensman by Doc Smith (which has the benefit of being first). Or give Asimov’s excellent Robot, Galactic Empire, or Foundation series a go. They all come highly recommended. Story: 5 (Occasionally fun and pulpy but mostly stale and unbelievable) Characters: 3 (What characters?)

  5. 4 out of 5

    Robu-sensei

    The world of Isaac Asimov's Lucky Starr is a young science geek's wildest dream come true. Imagine: a thousand years from now, the solar system's secret agents and protectors of the weak are...scientists! —Who don't mind showing off what they know! Dr. Asimov often lamented the pernicious and ever-growing current of anti-intellectualism in American society. Was his series of young-adult Lucky Starr novels merely the public expression of an escapist fantasy universe, or did he intend to win young, The world of Isaac Asimov's Lucky Starr is a young science geek's wildest dream come true. Imagine: a thousand years from now, the solar system's secret agents and protectors of the weak are...scientists! —Who don't mind showing off what they know! Dr. Asimov often lamented the pernicious and ever-growing current of anti-intellectualism in American society. Was his series of young-adult Lucky Starr novels merely the public expression of an escapist fantasy universe, or did he intend to win young, intelligent minds to scientific inquiry by showing just how cool science could be? In the first installment, young David Starr, newly inducted into the Council of Science, goes undercover to root out a mysterious and deadly conspiracy to hold Earth's food supply hostage. He meets and befriends spunky Martian John Bigman Jones, who quickly becomes his faithful, if not even-tempered, sidekick. This initial novel puts the Lucky Starr universe on a sound footing. The embedded mystery is compelling, although its resolution is (in my opinion) a little too simplistic to be completely convincing. As one would expect, Dr. Asimov took pains to ensure that the Solar System providing the backdrop for Starr's adventures was consistent with contemporary knowledge of astronomy. However, it seems that every one of the Lucky Starr stories (except perhaps the second) contains at least one glaring anachronism, which the author lived to regret. In David Starr Space Ranger, the famous Martian canals, now known not to exist, featured prominently. Moreover, the Martian atmosphere in the story was thick enough to allow breathing with simple oxygen masks, whereas in actuality it is only about one percent of sea-level pressure on Earth. Mind you, these inaccuracies did nothing to lessen my enjoyment of the Lucky Starr tales, either in my youth or at the present time.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

    A fun science fiction mystery. Asimov owes a lot to the classics of the mystery genre in terms of how he structures his stories, and this one is a great example. A quick read, too.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Sarah-Jayne Briggs

    (This review may contain spoilers). This was one book I read originally years ago, but recently decided to re-read the series. And even though there were parts of it that were cliched, it remains one of my favourite science fiction books. One of my favourite parts of this book was the friendship that formed between David and Bigman. While David did seem like a character who was a bit too good to be true, there were problems he had... and I enjoyed seeing glimpses of his relationship with his honor (This review may contain spoilers). This was one book I read originally years ago, but recently decided to re-read the series. And even though there were parts of it that were cliched, it remains one of my favourite science fiction books. One of my favourite parts of this book was the friendship that formed between David and Bigman. While David did seem like a character who was a bit too good to be true, there were problems he had... and I enjoyed seeing glimpses of his relationship with his honorary uncles, even though the book was really too short to allow me to see much of his history, apart from what was stated in the narration. At the same time, the reflections of David's past made me feel a lot of sympathy for him as a child. I thought it was really good to see something of how the food poisoning would affect the residents of Earth, especially considering just how many people were still on Earth. Even though the information about Mars was outdated, I was able to suspend my disbelief enough to picture a lot of what had happened on the planet. I enjoyed seeing the effects of the gravity change and how different the culture on Mars was. I did think that David could have come up with a better story than he did when he first went to Mars. While it was good to see that there were conflicts between him and many of the Mars workers on the farm he joined, it did seem fairly obvious who the bad guys were... or at least some of them. It would have been good to see a bit more of the world in general, but I did like seeing some of the technology used, both on Earth and Mars. I would have liked a bit more background on the things like emotions being linked to exposing the colourless tattoo, for example. I really liked the opportunity to see what the real natives of Mars were like and it was also interesting to see how the communication through minds worked. And the Space Ranger itself was a really interesting idea, with an air of mystery added that I really liked seeing. While I would have liked to see the book expanded upon, I did really enjoy reading it and I'm sure I would read it again in the near future.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Patrik Sahlstrøm

    Utter garbage. Easy to see why it was originally published under a pseudonym... Take the worst elements of a poor spy-thriller and mix it unimaginative SF and you get this mess. Good thing to know that Asimov can write a lot better than this...

  9. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

    Ok I will admit I came across these while reading the Asimov's world of fantasy series and I tried and tried but I could not resist opening one up and a seeing what it was like and well honest that is how it all started. The books I have are from Lightening - A now defunct younger reader publisher. I was just getting through my first Asimov books (Pebble in the Sky and Earth Is Room Enough) and I saw these were in the process of being published yes in 1988 they were being reprinted. So I hungril Ok I will admit I came across these while reading the Asimov's world of fantasy series and I tried and tried but I could not resist opening one up and a seeing what it was like and well honest that is how it all started. The books I have are from Lightening - A now defunct younger reader publisher. I was just getting through my first Asimov books (Pebble in the Sky and Earth Is Room Enough) and I saw these were in the process of being published yes in 1988 they were being reprinted. So I hungrily bought them up and read them as they were published - for the grand total of £1.95! Yes they read as little more than serialised high adventures (you almost can just image these being turned in to those questionable black and white TV series which went out every saturday morning - where you knew that the hero always got the bad guy and some important message was hammered home with all the subtlety go a freight train). But back then - and now I don't care. Isaac Asimov is without doubt one of those authors who has a way with words and regardless of the audience, he was able to captivate and enthral them and I will never grow bored of his work.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Barak

    Quite enjoyable if somewhat naivete nowadays. And there is of course the added value of nostalgia (I have devoured the Lucky Starr series of books approximately 30 years ago, not recalling a thing from then except that it was very enjoyable). Unlike the TV series MacGyver, which was a total disappointment when trying to re-watch it at a later age, you can never get too wrong with Asimov.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ben Aaronovitch

    OK I'll admit that a great deal of this rating his down to pure nostalgia!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    I had heard of this collection but all the editions in my country have been long discontinued, so this was my first chance to read one of the Lucky Starr stories. I understand Asimov wrote them for a younger audience so I was quite ready to accept a simplier scientific background a way less deep storyline - some light space adventure sounded just right! Sience was good. Despite being outdated (which the author explained in the preface) it made absolute sense - I'm good assuming it was a "fiction M I had heard of this collection but all the editions in my country have been long discontinued, so this was my first chance to read one of the Lucky Starr stories. I understand Asimov wrote them for a younger audience so I was quite ready to accept a simplier scientific background a way less deep storyline - some light space adventure sounded just right! Sience was good. Despite being outdated (which the author explained in the preface) it made absolute sense - I'm good assuming it was a "fiction Mars" and not the "real Mars" as we know it now. But the storyline was crap. Absolute crap. Here goes Mr. Perfect, because not only he is perfect, he also knows he is perfect and everybody else around him (even those he has just met) accept as a matter of fact that he is so damn special. It bothers me. I guess I could live with it if at least things turned out wrong every once in a while and he had to make some effort to overcome difficulties. But, oh no, everything turns out always exactly as he had planned. Then you have the absolutely gratuitous Martian interference in the story, the silly Space Ranger performance and the final scene when all the characters are gathered in one place just to unmask the just-so-obvious culprit. Obviously I did not like this book at all, and the rating represents my dislike but maybe (maybe) younger readers would enjoy it as it is. And if they do, hey, maybe you'll move onto Asimov's masterpieces later - so reading this book might be for good after all.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Phil Giunta

    David Starr, a promising young member of Earth's Council of Science, is recruited to investigate a series of fatal poisonings that are all traced back to food imported from the Martian colonies. Once on Mars, Starr adopts the alias of Dick Williams and, along with a short, unruly farmhand named Bigman, ends up working on the Makian farm, the largest on the planet. After several altercations with two of Makian's irascible foremen, Starr ends up working for the farm's resident agronomist, Benson. T David Starr, a promising young member of Earth's Council of Science, is recruited to investigate a series of fatal poisonings that are all traced back to food imported from the Martian colonies. Once on Mars, Starr adopts the alias of Dick Williams and, along with a short, unruly farmhand named Bigman, ends up working on the Makian farm, the largest on the planet. After several altercations with two of Makian's irascible foremen, Starr ends up working for the farm's resident agronomist, Benson. The benevolent researcher has been frustrated in his attempts to locate the source of the poison, but theorizes that perhaps there could be Martians living in caverns beneath the planet's surface. Starr enlists Bigman's help to explore the caverns and indeed encounters a highly evolved race of beings of pure energy who bestow upon Starr a device that generates a personal force field that also shrouds his external appearance. One of the energy beings designates Starr as a "Space Ranger," an identity that Starr adopts as he tracks down the true perpetrators of the food poisoning. David Starr, Space Ranger is the first of six books known as the Lucky Starr series written by Isaac Asimov under the pen name of Paul French. The first volume is a fun, lighthearted adventure with no slow moments. I look forward to reading the next!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Nick Brough

    Classic Asimov from the early to mid-1950s. I did pick up and read the second book in there series when I was a teenager, but I never saw the majority in print. Having sourced pdf version of the entire series, I intend to read them in sequence. Unlike the classic Andre Norton Solar Queen series I've just reread, there's no nostalgia here. This will at least be fair in that respect. Of course I'm expecting the whole series to be entirely dated and technologically inept, but I think it remains int Classic Asimov from the early to mid-1950s. I did pick up and read the second book in there series when I was a teenager, but I never saw the majority in print. Having sourced pdf version of the entire series, I intend to read them in sequence. Unlike the classic Andre Norton Solar Queen series I've just reread, there's no nostalgia here. This will at least be fair in that respect. Of course I'm expecting the whole series to be entirely dated and technologically inept, but I think it remains interesting what we thought exploring the universe might look like, when we have reliable technology. Even Sapce-X today isnt really that routine, given its launch frequency and only partially reusable launch vehicles. We still have a way to go yet. Its set too far into the future, but tother than that its not too bad scientifically based on 1950's knowledge. It wouldn't take too much editing to bring the background up to date, which says a lot. The criminal plot, is a bit silly, but the story itself isnt too bad. Its a short book worth reading with a forgiving eye.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Chris

    This book is definitely targeting a juvenile audience I would say approximately age 8. It is a very linear storyline with very few twists and none that you do not see coming. The redeeming factor is that it is a very quick read. I can see why Asimov authored this series under a pseudonym. On the plus side the story is slightly around the founding of a super hero, which given the current environment might actually be something that could be developed further. On the editing: The version I read (pr This book is definitely targeting a juvenile audience I would say approximately age 8. It is a very linear storyline with very few twists and none that you do not see coming. The redeeming factor is that it is a very quick read. I can see why Asimov authored this series under a pseudonym. On the plus side the story is slightly around the founding of a super hero, which given the current environment might actually be something that could be developed further. On the editing: The version I read (printed in the early 80s) had a few clear typos and missing punctuation eg. hell vs he'll, but this was not horrible probably better than many modern books. If you are thinking do I have to read this, it it a major work of Asimov, I would say do not bother but if you do it is not a lot of time you will waste.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Dane Cobain

    This is the first book in Asimov’s David Starr, Space Ranger series, which he wrote under the pseudonym Paul French. I’ve actually read The Rings of Saturn, which is the fifth book in the series, but it still worked in this order and it was nice to see how the Space Ranger moniker first came about. Plus it’s just well-written sci-fi and a genuine pleasure to read. As for the story line, we follow Starr as he investigates a Martian farm to try to figure out why people are getting poisoned after ea This is the first book in Asimov’s David Starr, Space Ranger series, which he wrote under the pseudonym Paul French. I’ve actually read The Rings of Saturn, which is the fifth book in the series, but it still worked in this order and it was nice to see how the Space Ranger moniker first came about. Plus it’s just well-written sci-fi and a genuine pleasure to read. As for the story line, we follow Starr as he investigates a Martian farm to try to figure out why people are getting poisoned after eating the food that’s grown there. It’s an engaging story in its own right, but Asimov’s background in the sciences also added a lot to make it even more enjoyable. Excellent.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kat

    Asimov does in 240 pages what some authors will never do in a lifetime of tomes: write a jolly good book. The writing style is without fault; the storyline both interesting and exciting; and the world is perfectly scifi without losing us with far-fetchedness nor overexplanations. It was a fun and refreshing read amongst the quagmire of books with something (I find) lacking here or there. The only disappointment was realising the two females mentioned in the entire book were dead for sake of a tr Asimov does in 240 pages what some authors will never do in a lifetime of tomes: write a jolly good book. The writing style is without fault; the storyline both interesting and exciting; and the world is perfectly scifi without losing us with far-fetchedness nor overexplanations. It was a fun and refreshing read amongst the quagmire of books with something (I find) lacking here or there. The only disappointment was realising the two females mentioned in the entire book were dead for sake of a tragic backstory. (Technically there was a third but she was also both dead and made up).

  18. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    I was delighted to find this series recently while searching inline for the best classic scifi for kids. The science about Mars is 65 years out of date, that's why I included the scifi-fantasy category. But the story is fun with lots of action. I'm still amazed at the way Asimov could craft intelligent stories and mysteries. The Lucky Starr series was written for young adults, and Asimov admits that he chose the pseudonym Paul French because he didn't want to be associated with a silly sci-fi te I was delighted to find this series recently while searching inline for the best classic scifi for kids. The science about Mars is 65 years out of date, that's why I included the scifi-fantasy category. But the story is fun with lots of action. I'm still amazed at the way Asimov could craft intelligent stories and mysteries. The Lucky Starr series was written for young adults, and Asimov admits that he chose the pseudonym Paul French because he didn't want to be associated with a silly sci-fi television series that was planned. I read this online at epdf.pub.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Paula

    This was the first Sci-fi book I ever read, given to me by my Grandad at age 9ish. A fab book to start my addiction to the genre. Set on Mars a boy gets lost in a sandstorm and is saved and adjusted by friendly aliens and starts a series of adventures using his new abilities and superior technology

  20. 5 out of 5

    Wes

    David Starr is a hyper-fit genius Adonis.... in space. In short, this book is exactly what it sounds like it's going to be. If you're looking for a hypermasculine adventure novel set on Mars, this is the one for you. Be aware that there's not a single living woman in the whole story (except for, perhaps, a Martian? Things are unclear). But this space James Bond does kick a lot of ass.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Christian Lain

    This is Asimov at his best. It may have been written before recent discoveries about Mars, but it doesn't matter. David Starr goes to find out why imports of food, from the Red Planet, are becoming dangerous: there have been several fatalities. It's a space who-done-it that mixes in great sci-fi concepts - if only we could use that martian forcefield to recycle ... well everything! Sixty years on and no way finished yet. I'm reaching for the next adventure for 'Lucky Starr'.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Andrea

    I don’t usually read sci-fi, but asked for some suggestions to branch into the genre and I wasn’t disappointed. Asimov applied his knowledge of physics and space travel to a fun YA book. I learned some things about Mars and I learned some things about sci-fi as a genre.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Philip

    First read this series when I was a kid in the 80s. Given it was written in the 50s it has aged surprisingly well (except for when our hero David sends someone to get some video books and a projector!!). Fun and quite exciting (and approved for my daughter to read).

  24. 4 out of 5

    Vicente L Ruiz

    Haven't read it in decades. It shows its age. The Spanish translation in my edition is... not the best.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ralph Carlson

    Haven’t read this entertaining little book since I was a kid. Quite enjoyed it again.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Katsuro

    No masterpiece, but decent enough.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Steven Baldwin

    a fun read

  28. 4 out of 5

    Fran Santiago

    Great fun read!!! Reminded me of the original Star Trek TV show. If you need a light, no depth read...this is the book for you!!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Sam Cooke

    All of the nostalgia! I haven’t read this book since I was a kid. My young sci-fi/geek self is beautifully satisfied for the time being.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jay Gabler

    Space superhero! They oughta call him "Lucky."

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