Reviews by Eugene Cho

The Dueling Machine

by Benjamin William Bova

This is the Analog magazine version of the Dueling Machine, the third and last of Ben Bova's Star Watch stories after Star Conquerers and Star Watchman, so be warned that this free edition contains only the first half of the retail version of The Dueling Machine, ending immediately after Hector and Odal's first duel.

The back story borrows liberally from that of Hitler's rise to power in Nazi Germany, with the Acquataine Cluster and Terran Federation lining up as France and the US respectively, but the story itself is fresh, vibrant and fast moving with memorable scenes and characterizations throughout, Massan's duel being particularly chilling and a scene I remembered vividly from early in my teen years. A classic of juvenile science fiction, and the second half of the story is well worth tracking down in the real world once you are finished with this.

Reviewed on 2010.04.19

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