Tales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

 

Science FictionTales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

Tales From the White HartArthur C. Clarke; Del Rey 1986WorldCatHave you missed some of the classic science fiction from the 1950’s and 1960’s? Do you like those authors? Do you like Callahan’s Crosstime Saloon? Then you’ll enjoy Arthur C. Clarke’s Tales from the White Hart.

The White Hart is a pub in London somewhere between Fleet Street and the Embankment. It’s not easy to find even after having been there a time or two. On Wednesday nights the clientele tends to be scientists and writers. That’s when stories are exchanged. Or are they tall tales? Sometimes it’s hard to tell.

Harry Purvis is the reigning king storyteller in the White Hart. Harry is a scientist who has all sorts of contacts both in England and the United States. He tells as many stories as he can that have not been classified as secret. Tales from the White Hart includes 15 stories, most of them told by Harry. Clarke freely admits he is an admiring skeptic in Purvis’ and the other story teller’s audience.

All these stories were written in the 1950’s. Yet they hold their own except for the computer technology itself. There is the blossoming technology of mining the minerals in the ocean water. Then there was the computer built to develop war tactics that becomes a pacifist. And there is the meat-eating plant a la Little Shop of Horrors. Don’t forget… Never mind, you need to read these fun stories for yourself.

My copy of this small book has been waiting on my to-be-read pile for years. It was published in 1977, although I don’t think I’ve had it for more than six or seven years. It will now stay close by so I can re-read these like I do the stories in Spider Robinson’s Callahan series. They are humorous and since written by Clarke, are based on believable science fiction. This book is a great, funny bit of classic 1950’s science fiction.

More books by Arthur C. Clarke

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