When a super-robot named Snookums discovers how to build his own superbombs, it becomes obvious that Earth is by no means the safest place for him to be. And so Dr. Fitzhugh, his designer, and Leda Crannon, a child psychologist acting as Snookums’ nursemaid, agree to set up Operation Brainchild, a plan to transport the robot to a far distant planet. Mike the Angel--M. R. Gabriel, Power Design--has devised the power plant that is to propel the space ship Branchell to its secret destination, complete with its unusual cargo. And, as a reserve officer in the Space Patrol, Mike is a logical replacement for the craft’s unavoidably detained engineering officer.But once into space, the Branchell becomes the scene of some frightening events--the medical officer is murdered, and Snookums appears to be the culprit. Mike the Angel indulges himself in a bit of sleuthing, and the facts he turns up lead to a most unusual climax.
e not bein' unco-operative. Let's see now--" He gazed at the ceiling as though trying to collect his thoughts. He knew perfectly well that the police sergeant was recording everything he said.
The sergeant sighed. "Look, Harry, you're not on trial. I know perfectly well that you've got this place bugged to a fare-thee-well. So does every shop operator on Radio Row. If you didn't, the JD gangs would have cleaned you all out long ago."
Harry kept looking at the ceiling, and Mike the Angel smiled quietly at his fingernails.
The detective sergeant sighed again. "Sure, we'd like to have some of the gadgets that you and the other operators on the Row have worked out, Harry. But I'm in no position to take 'em away from you. Besides, we have some stuff that you'd like to have, too, so that makes us pretty much even. If we started confiscating illegal equipment from you, the JD's would swoop in here, take your legitimate equipment, bug it up, and they'd be driving us all nuts within a week. So lon
An amusing tale.
More interesting for its concepts than its characters (in fact, the most engaging personality in the story is the immature AI, Snookums). However, there are enough original ideas here to make it a worthwhile read.
Starts out as sci-fi with some interesting ideas. By the half way point the plot deteriorates to a weak, melodramatic space romance. Maybe the author ran out of ideas and was padding? Just fair at best.
Not the most sophisticated of tales, but entertaining -- a bit of robotics, some hero-worship, a little romance, and a murder; it's all sewn up nice and neat by the end.
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