27 February 2013

The Gods Hate Kansas

Great title for this 1941 science fiction novel.It was one of the first novels of "aliens taking over humans by mind control".
 It was made into a movie in 1967 called They Came from Beyond Space 
first published in the pulps in 1941

paperback edition 1964, cover painting by Jack Thurston

A later magazine reprint:

26 February 2013

Mr. Bass's Planetoid

 Mr. Bass's Planetoid is a 1958 children's science fiction novel by Canadian author Eleanor Cameron. The novel followed The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet (1954) and Stowaway to the Mushroom Planet (1956).

  I loved these books as a child. The notion that 2 boys could build a spaceship out of tin cans and travel to outer space was very appealing!
 The Illustrations are by Louis Darling.

Prewytt Brumblydge, inventor of the Brumblitron, must be found in order to disable the device before it destroys the Earth. This is a job for Mr. Bass, but he has disappeared... so the boys pore over his notebook for clues and go spacefaring to find Brumblydge. This time, instead of journeying to Basidium, they fly to an airless rock named Lepton that orbits 1,000 miles above the Earth's surface.
This novel also introduced the fictional metal Brumblium, a greenish metal, that shows as infragreen on a spectroscope, and is twice the density of uranium.

25 February 2013

Comic Book Short Story~Nurse Linda Lark

This story, probably drawn by John Tartaglione, is from  "Linda Lark Registered Nurse" #2, Jan. 1962. Issues #1 was titled Linda Lark Student Nurse"

22 February 2013

The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet

The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet is a science fiction/fantasy children's novel written by Eleanor Cameron in 1954. It is set in a beach community in California, as well as on a tiny, habitable moon, "Basidium," in an invisible orbit 50,000 miles from Earth. The "Mushroom Planet," visited by the protagonists David and Chuck, is covered in various types of mushrooms and is populated by little green people who are in a state of distress.

When two boys find a mysterious ad in a newspaper asking for two young boys to build a spaceship, they quickly construct one out of old tin and scrap wood, and bring it to the advertiser. This man is the mysterious Mr. Bass, a scientist living in an observatory who goes unnoticed by most of the townspeople for some reason. He shows the boys a previously undetected satellite of the Earth, the eponymous planet, which can only be seen with a special filter he has invented. He refits their spaceship, giving them some special fuel he invented to power it, and tells them to fly to the mushroom planet (after getting their parents' permission). He warns them that their trip will only be successful if they bring a mascot.

When it is time for launch, they grab a hen at the last moment for a mascot, and rocket into space. They wake up on the mushroom planet, a small, verdant world covered in soft moss and tree-size mushrooms. They quickly meet some residents of the mushroom planet, small men with large heads and slightly green skin, of the same people as the mysterious Mr. Bass. They tell the boys that their planet has had a crisis and that everyone is slowly dying of a mysterious sickness. The boys meet up with the king of the planet, the Great Ta, and end up solving the natives' problem, before returning to Earth.
The mushroom people's crisis was a lack of sulfur. The boys resolved this with their mascot hen, as chicken eggs have a high sulfur content.

21 February 2013

 FOREVER GEEK... 25 years ago I was editing our local computer club's newsletter... yes, before the Internet we used to get together face to face. We ran a BBS during the late 80s, one user at a time, the whole thing living on 4 single sided floppy drives. Computers used to be fun

19 February 2013

Wildlife by Wilhelm Eigener

Wilhelm Eigener  (1904-1982)  was a German animal illustrator and graphic artist.
click a time or two for HIGH RES

He  worked from 1930 to 1938 as chief draftsman at  Friedlander , a Hamburg printing company ,where he  specialized on circus  posters. During the 2nd World War II he served as a soldier in Poland and Russia. From the 1950s, he was one of the most sought after animal and nature's book illustrators. His realistic watercolors are in many  books on biology but also on the covers of  publications of Berlin Zoo. These are from 1961.