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Duel on Syrtis   By: (1926-2001)

Duel on Syrtis by Poul William Anderson

Duel on Syrtis by Poul William Anderson is a captivating science fiction novel that takes readers on a thrilling journey to the red planet. Set in a future where humankind has colonized Mars, the story delves into the complex social and political dynamics that arise in this futuristic society.

The book follows the exploits of David Falkayn, a resourceful and determined protagonist, who finds himself caught in the midst of a power struggle between two rival colonies on Mars. Anderson skillfully crafts a plot filled with intrigue, deception, and high-stakes conflict that keeps readers engaged from start to finish.

One of the most impressive aspects of Duel on Syrtis is Anderson's attention to detail in creating a believable and immersive Martian environment. The vivid descriptions of the barren landscapes, futuristic technology, and the challenges faced by settlers on Mars make the story come alive, allowing readers to fully imagine themselves inhabiting this world.

Furthermore, Anderson expertly combines elements of science fiction with themes of loyalty, honor, and personal growth. Through Falkayn's experiences and choices, readers are compelled to reflect on the price of loyalty and the struggle between self-interest and duty. This character development adds depth to the narrative and keeps readers emotionally invested in the outcome.

The pacing of Duel on Syrtis is impeccable, with Anderson's skilled storytelling weaving together elements of suspense, action, and introspection. The duel sequences are especially exhilarating, showcasing the author's ability to create tension and build anticipation. The clever twists and turns in the plot ensure that readers are constantly left guessing, making it difficult to put the book down.

While the novel provides a thrilling adventure, it also raises thought-provoking questions about the human condition and the consequences of our actions. Anderson effortlessly explores the theme of power and its corruption, leaving readers to ponder the parallels between this Martian society and our own.

Overall, Duel on Syrtis is a masterfully written science fiction novel that transports readers to a future world and immerses them in a richly imagined Martian setting. Anderson's character-driven narrative, intricate plot, and compelling themes make it a must-read for fans of the genre. It is a testament to the author's talent and creativity, leaving readers eagerly awaiting the next installment in the series.

First Page:

Transcriber's Note:

This etext was produced from Planet Stories March 1951. Extensive research did not uncover any evidence that the U.S. copyright on this publication was renewed.

[Illustration: Wearily, Kreega scrambled up on top of the rock and crouched there.... ]

duel on SYRTIS


Bold and ruthless, he was famed throughout the System as a big game hunter. From the firedrakes of Mercury to the ice crawlers of Pluto, he'd slain them all. But his trophy room lacked one item; and now Riordan swore he'd bag the forbidden game that roamed the red deserts ... a Martian!

The night whispered the message. Over the many miles of loneliness it was borne, carried on the wind, rustled by the half sentient lichens and the dwarfed trees, murmured from one to another of the little creatures that huddled under crags, in caves, by shadowy dunes. In no words, but in a dim pulsing of dread which echoed through Kreega's brain, the warning ran

They are hunting again.

Kreega shuddered in a sudden blast of wind. The night was enormous around him, above him, from the iron bitterness of the hills to the wheeling, glittering constellations light years over his head... Continue reading book >>

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