Project Mastodon

Project Mastodon


(3 Reviews)
Project Mastodon by Clifford Donald Simak







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Project Mastodon


(3 Reviews)
This story was first published in March 1955 Galaxy and the etext was produced from the anthology "All the Traps of Earth and other stories". Extensive research did not uncover any evidence that the U.S. copyright on this publication was renewed.

Book Excerpt

ch it."

"If it didn't scare them off," Hudson pointed out. "The last few feet showed nothing but the inside of his throat."

Ex-ambassador Hudson looked unhappy. "I don't like the whole setup. As soon as we bring someone in, the news is sure to leak. And once the word gets out, there'll be guys lying in ambush for us--maybe even nations--scheming to steal the know-how, legally or violently. That's what scares me the most about those films I lost. Someone will find them and they may guess what it's all about, but I'm hoping they either won't believe it or can't manage to trace us."

"We could swear the hunting parties to secrecy," said Cooper.

"How could a sportsman keep still about the mounted head of a saber-tooth or a record piece of ivory?" And the same thing would apply to anyone we approached. Some university could raise dough to send a team of scientists back here and a movie company would cough up plenty to use this place as a location for a caveman epic. But it wouldn't be wo

Readers reviews

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Such a good premise, and some fairly good writing. But, the author blows it with a horribly unsatisfying ending.

Basically, yet-another-time-travel-story. However, it was done well enough to keep it interesting until the crash and burn ending.
A guy showed up in Washington trying to get diplomatic recognition for a new nation he represented. His explanations went in circles or were simply nonsensical, and he got the brush-off. After he disappears, the military suddenly wants to talk to him again, because it appears his nation is only far away in time. But as it turns out, that can be very far away indeed.

Pretty much stock characters and a magical time machine working on rescuing three guys trapped in the past.
An interesting variation on the standard time-machine theme. No loops encountered. The short story is tersely written and the end, when technicalities clear, abrupt. This makes it an early example of hard SF with a time machine, worth a read.