By Arthur C. Clarke
One of the 35 book (digital-only) 2012 RosettaBooks releases comprising the entire Arthur C. Clarke Collection.
In best an day trip during the many-layered Jovian surroundings within the hydrogen balloon craft Kon-Tiki, Captain Howard Falcon discovers an international the place bioluminescent air plankton produce fabulous atmospheric sea-fire, predatory manta-ray creatures dominate the skies, and large jellyfish-like beings become over a mile across.
The name tale of this fourth assortment from one of many genre's such a lot celebrated authors ends with a twist—that leaves the reader wondering what it potential to be human. This assortment comprises the various author's such a lot acclaimed brief fiction, together with "Cosmic Casanova" and "Sleeping Beauty"—stories that satisfaction, shock, and lead readers to invite significant questions about humanity's function within the cosmos.
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Extra resources for Collected Stories, Volume 4: A Meeting with Medusa
Thankfully humankind had now not been fully unprepared, because of the truth that Senator George Ledstone (Independent, West the USA) had chaired an influential finance committee nearly a new release prior. The Senator had one public eccentricity and, he cheerfully admitted, one mystery vice. He regularly wore titanic horn-rimmed eyeglasses (nonfunctional, after all) simply because they'd an intimidating impact on uncooperative witnesses, few of whom had ever encountered this sort of novelty. His ‘secret vice’, completely popular to every body, was once rifle taking pictures on a typical Olympic diversity, arrange within the tunnels of a long-abandoned missile silo close to Mount Cheyenne. Ever because the demilitarisation of Planet Earth (much speeded up through the recognized slogan ‘Guns Are the Crutches of the Impotent’), such actions were frowned upon, although no longer actively discouraged. there has been doubtless that Senator Ledstone used to be an unique; it looked as if it would run within the kinfolk. His grandmother were a colonel within the dreaded Beverly Hills defense force, whose skirmishes with the l. a. Irregulars had spawned never-ending psychodramas in each medium, from out of date ballet to direct mind stimulation. And his grandfather were some of the most infamous bootleggers of the twenty first century. ahead of he was once killed in a shoot-out with the Canadian Medicops in the course of an inventive try to smuggle a kiloton of tobacco up Niagara Falls, it was once predicted that ‘Smokey’ were accountable for not less than 20 million deaths. Ledstone used to be relatively unrepentant approximately his grandfather, whose sensational loss of life had caused the repeal of the overdue US’s 3rd, and such a lot disastrous, try at Prohibition. He argued that dependable adults might be allowed to dedicate suicide whatsoever they pleased—by alcohol, cocaine or perhaps tobacco—as lengthy as they didn't kill blameless bystanders throughout the approach. whilst the proposed finances for Spaceguard part 2 used to be first offered to him, Senator Ledstone were outraged through the assumption of throwing billions of greenbacks into area. It was once real that the worldwide economic system was once fit; because the nearly simultaneous cave in of communism and capitalism, the skilful software of chaos idea by means of global financial institution mathematicians had damaged the outdated cycle of booms and busts and avoided (so some distance) the ultimate melancholy estimated through many pessimists. still, the Senator argued that the money might be far better spent on Earth—especially on his favorite venture, reconstructing what used to be left of California after the Superquake. whilst Ledstone had two times vetoed Spaceguard part 2, everybody agreed that not anyone in the world may make him switch his brain. they'd reckoned with out anyone from Mars. The pink Planet was once not rather so pink, although the method of greening it had slightly began. targeting the issues of survival, the colonists (they hated the notice and have been already announcing proudly ‘we Martians’) had little strength left over for paintings or technology. however the lightning flash of genius moves the place it's going to, and the best theoretical physicist of the century was once born below the bubble domes of Port Lowell.
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