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Helpfully Yours   By: (1927-2000)

Helpfully Yours by Evelyn E. Smith

In "Helpfully Yours" by Evelyn E. Smith, readers are transported to a world where technology takes a backseat and human relationships thrive. Although devoid of a concrete title, this book provides a refreshing take on the importance of heartfelt connections in an increasingly digital age.

The story revolves around a unique concept known as "help." This is a device that has replaced technology, designed for efficient problem-solving and general assistance. It is fascinating to witness how this simple yet versatile device has transformed society. Smith excels at portraying the potential consequences and benefits of such an invention, effectively capturing the reader's attention from start to finish.

The protagonist, Zoe, becomes a "help" to a man named Ron, who is initially skeptical of the device's abilities. As they embark on various adventures together, a strong bond between Zoe and Ron develops, slowly revealing their deepest fears and desires. Smith skillfully portrays their evolving relationship, emphasizing the power of human connection and highlighting that genuine help comes from the heart, not just from technology.

The author's writing style is engaging and lighthearted, making it easy for readers to connect with the characters and their experiences. Smith's attention to detail is remarkable, as she vividly describes the settings and emotions, allowing readers to immerse themselves fully in the narrative.

One of the book's strengths is its ability to challenge the reader's perception of technology's role in society. It prompts us to reflect on our own dependence on devices and whether we might be neglecting meaningful connections as a result. Through Zoe and Ron's journey, Smith encourages us to prioritize human interaction and rediscover the value of empathy and compassion.

However, one aspect that could have been further explored is the potential drawbacks of the "help" device. While the narrative mainly focuses on the positive aspects, a more balanced portrayal could have added depth and complexity to the story.

Despite this minor criticism, "Helpfully Yours" is a heartwarming and thought-provoking read. It reminds us that genuine help and support ultimately stem from personal connections and empathy, rather than relying solely on technology. By skillfully blending elements of science fiction, romance, and societal reflection, Evelyn E. Smith delivers a captivating tale that will leave readers pondering the true meaning of human interaction long after they put the book down.

First Page:



Illustrated by EMSH

[Transcriber's Note: This etext was produced from Galaxy Science Fiction February 1955. Extensive research did not uncover any evidence that the U.S. copyright on this publication was renewed.]


[Sidenote: "Come down to Earth and stay there!" is a humiliating order for somebody with wings! ]

Tarb Morfatch had read all the information on Terrestrial customs that was available in the Times morgue before she'd left Fizbus. And all through the journey she'd studied her Brief Introduction to Terrestrial Manners and Mores avidly. Perhaps it was a bit overinspirational in spots, but it had facts in it, too.

So she knew that, since the natives were non alate, she was not to take wing on Earth. She had, however, forgotten to correlate the knowledge of their winglessness with her own vertical habits. As a result, on leaving the tender that had ferried her down from the Moon, she looked up instead of right and narrowly escaped death at the jaws of a raging groundcar that swerved out onto the field.

She recognized it as a taxi from one of the pictures in the handbook. It was a pity, she thought sadly as she was knocked off her feet, that all those lessons she had so carefully learned were to go to waste... Continue reading book >>

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