Spacehounds of IPC

  • by E. E. Smith
  • Narrated by Arthur Vincet
  • 9 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

When the Inter-Planetary Corporation's (IPC) crack liner, "IPV Arcturus", took off on a routine flight to Mars, it turned out to be the beginning of an unexpected and long voyage. There had been too many reports of errors in ship's flight positions from the Check Stations and brilliant physicist Dr. Percival Stevens is aboard the Arcturus on a fact-finding mission to find out what's really happening, and hopefully save the honor of the brave pilots of the space-liner Arcturus from the Check Stations desk-jockeys' implications of imprecision - the nastiest insult one could cast at a ship's pilot. He and the pilots are right, it was the Check Stations that were out of position, not the ships. But that is cold consolation because before the Arcturus reaches Mars, it is attacked by a small, mysterious, globe-shaped space-ship...

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

It is what it is.... 1947 pulp fiction!

Be forewarned. "Dated" doesn't begin to describe it. I mean, the adult woman has to ask Daddy's permission to get married! Lots of "darlings"and "dearests", and a good guy to have along in a crisis is "a square brick". Stereotypes? They had to come from somewhere, and E.E. "Doc" Smith is a primary source.

That said, for those of us who grew up on this stuff (yes, I'm old!) Spacehounds offers a fun-filled trip back to what the future used to look like. Martians, Venusians, Jovians, intelligent life on every planet, as well as several of their moons, and why can't we all just get along.

The plot mostly involves an adventurous and incredibly athletic young couple who get stranded in space and have to somehow cobble together what they need to survive while they figure out how to get home. Think The Martian, as if written 70 years ago, only the air is breathable (!) and the flora and fauna are edible. Toward the end there is a bit of interplanetary warfare. Happy ending, of course. That's not a spoiler, it was a publishing requirement back in the day.

About the narration: if this were contemporary fiction it would get at most one star, maybe negative if that were an option. It is read in a very flat, uninflected manner, with the occasional overly enthusiastic outburst. So why three stars? Because this is a trip down memory lane and that was what these stories sounded like on radio and in the old Saturday afternoon movie serials (which persisted into the 1960s in the small town where I grew up.)

Not something I would listen to over again, but amusing just this once. Actually all you modern Sci Fi fans need to read or listen to Podkayne of Mars, one or two of these, then move on to early Heinlein, Asimov, and Clarke, to see how the genre developed.
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- Townsend

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-21-2017
  • Publisher: Audioliterature