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Dead Man's Planet

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Published: 1955
Language: English
Wordcount: 5,534 / 23 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 90.2
LoC Category: PS
Downloads: 2,103
Added to site: 2009.12.28 26133

When a driven man arrives at a cemetery world, what else can it be but journey's end—and the start of a new one?

Show Excerpt

out four feet high, with four smooth lateral sides. Rectangular prisms of this size were rare in nature. This was obviously the work of human hands, and of a blasting rod as well, to judge by the sides, which showed evidence of having been fused before weathering had cut into them. At first he had thought the column was a gravestone. But there was no inscription upon it. There was nothing but a thin deep groove that ran horizontally around the four sides, several inches from the top.

"What does it mean, Pop?"

"Let's find out. It's obviously been put here as some sort of memorial. As for this groove--"

He put his hands on the top of the stone and lifted. As he had half expected, it separated at the horizontal groove. The top of the stone was the lid of a box. Inside lay a plastic container.

"Some kind of plastic we don't make any more," muttered Sam.

"Aren't you going to open it?" asked Mark eagerly. "Maybe it tells about the grave and the dog's name."

The plastic came

Reader Reviews

Average Rating of 3.3 from 3 reviews: ****
JoJo Biggins

Sorry. Disagree with other reviews. The story is too simplistic and the characters too hollow. There really is no twist. You won't be sorry if you skip this one.

Sardo Weems

A well-done, sad little story about loneliness and immortality. Good twist at the end. The father and son are well-done characters.

Worth reading.


This is a melancholy little short story involving a big-game hunter and his lonely son who finds (and wants to adopt) a wild dog he discovers in the wilds of a distant planet they have visited. It keeps your interest throughout, and almost breaks your heart at the end.



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