The Planet Strappers

Cover image for


Published: 1961
Language: English
Wordcount: 66,464 / 204 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 80.8
LoC Category: PZ
Downloads: 7,670
Added to site: 2008.04.14 20566

The Planet Strappers started out as The Bunch, a group of student-astronauts in the back room of a store in Jarviston, Minnesota. They wanted off Earth, and they begged, borrowed and built what they needed to make it. They got what they wanted--a start on the road to the stars--but no one brought up on Earth could have imagined what was waiting for them Out There!

Show Excerpt

h's major projects--their first space bubble, or bubb which they had been cutting and shaping with more care and devotion than skill.

"Cripes--put that damn shiv away, Tif!" Art snapped. "Or lose it someplace!"

Ramos, who was a part-time mechanic at the same garage where Tiflin worked, couldn't help taunting. "Yeah--smoking, too. Oh-oh. Using up precious oxygen. Better quit, pal. Can't do much of that Out There."

This was a wrong moment to rib Tiflin. He was in an instant flare. But he ground out the cigarette at once, bitterly. "What do you care what I do, Mex?" he snarled. "And as for you two Hunky Kuzaks--you oversized bulldozers--how about weight limits for blastoff? Damn--I don't care how big you are!"

In mounting rage, he was about to lash out with his fists, even at the two watchful football men. But then he looked surprised. With a terrible effort, he bottled up even his furious words.

The Bunch was a sort of family. Members of families may love eac


Average Rating of 4 from 2 reviews: ****
Leah A. Zeldes

A rather poignant story about a group of space-mad youths and what happened to them, with all the individualism and do-it-yourself gusto of the 1950s and '60s. It's a decent tale if you can ignore the obsolete science and economics, and resist the idea that the "bubbs" (space habitats) might just as well be covered wagons.

Ed Burkhead

This 1961 space exploration book has held up wonderfully well.

It tells of a time when humans are expanding through the solar system. Even poor young adventurers can go out by purchasing space-force surplus space suits and building styrene (plastic like) bubbles with ion drives.

Via the ion drives providing low but continuous solar powered thrust, once they are in low earth orbit, they can go most anywhere.

This book follows some interesting characters. Some of them don't amount to much but others manage to make things happen in a big way.

This is a classic SF story, well told with some pretty good characters. Even the 1961 projection of space science holds up with only the slightest amount of squinting.

I've enjoyed this book enough to reread it several times over the decades and expect to read it again.

I'd give it a good four stars out of five.

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