Name this science fiction book?

The story follows a group of military men. Earth goes to Mars, encounter primitive Martians, the team are in the military forces of Earth which then proceed to kill them all. The end of the book is the campaign on Jupiter, where they wipe out waves of primitive Jovians with atomic guns. The Jovians may have been bird like. One or more of the group, now sick of the slaughter, joins the Jovians, eventually dying along with the last of the aliens when they blow up their remaining stronghold with captured atomics. Although it started with mankind as the force of good, colonialism, xenophobia and genocide showed we clearly weren’t.

They might have invaded Saturn (and wiped out the natives) in between Mars and Jupiter, I can’t quite remember.

I think it was written in the fifties, due to the atomic technology, although it could have been earlier, what with humans running around on the surface of Jupiter, which was just a very big planet rather than gas giant.

Avatar, by James Cameron.

It almost sounds like Sirens of Titan


But no


Googling for “science fiction atomic jupiter mars” brings me to this Google Books link, which is a compendium of various sci-fi works over the years. One work, “The Conquest Of Two Worlds” sounds exactly like your description, except it was a short story and not a book.

Hey, that looks to be it! I did google keywords of course, but the whilst i read through a few Gernsback links, I missed that one. I must have read it in an old Sci-Fi compilation.

Funnily enough, the first hit for those keywords on google now is this thread.


Its public domain now. It was a lot shorterthan I remember when originally reading it. It was nearly 3 decades ago though!

The greatest difficulty, Crane saw, was Jupiter’s gravitation, almost twice that of earth despite the swift-spinning planet’s counteracting centrifugal force.

Does spinning work that way?

Right, I thought so.
I guess what threw me off were the poles and being sleepy.

2 requests, both vaguely remembered from a middle school library. Really more out of curiousity than any burning need to identify them.

The first is a YA novel or short story about people in a remote town getting slowly turned into cactuses. I think they’d get slowly greener and more lethargic until they actually rooted, and became plants. Aliens might have been involved. I don’t really recall if there was a plot or conflict beyond that. This also might have been taken from my dad’s old book collection, which would place it closer to the 60’s.

The other was a thin, large format (coffee-table book sized) collection of short stories. There may have been illustrations, but it wasn’t a picture book per se, they were actual prose stories. The only one I remember (and I think the one featured on the cover) involved a big-deal solar sail regatta, which had to be cancelled because of sunspots, or something. Maybe it was only the one story, but I think it was a collection.

Anybody have any idea what either of those are?

The short story in the second one is probably “Sunjammer” or “Wind from the Sun” by Arthur C. Clarke. It’s been collected several times, and published under both titles.

Wow, that was fast! And yup, Sunjammer for sure. No idea what the collection I read it in is though. Thanks!

I don’t know about the cactus book either, but I totally read that one too. It had photos in it of people culminating in photos of cacti with scraps of clothing on them, right? That always made me think it was an adaptation of a crappy TV movie.

I hadn’t remembered the photos until you mentioned it, but that does ring a bell.

I remember that book! The Plant People by Dale Carson and Chuck Freedman. Here it is on Amazon. Lots of copies on too.

That book scared the hell out of me. I have a strong memory of one of the photos literally turning my stomach: it was a picture of a hand with plant-like veins. I nearly puked. Strong stuff for the elementary school library.

Bam! Solid team effort, guys! What can’t the internet do?

Wow, I really did not expect either of those requests to pan out, and it took, what, 5 hours?

All hail the mighty Hivemind!

Also, with all the creative googling I tried to do, apparently I could literally have found it with “plant people book”. Gah.

Okay, I’ve got one.

Things I am fairly sure of about this book:

This book took place on a water planet. Humans lived on sailing ships or floating cities. The protaganist was a young man and was in the service of some sort of queen. I read this in 1981-2, and remember the book having a cover that I would call typical of a book printed in the 60’s. This was in my 8th grade english teacher’s library, so it may be a young adult novel.

Things I think I know, but may be way off:

The protagonist starts as a minor crew member and eventually completes some sort of grand quest as a captain, possibly involving finding land or defeating aliens, or both. The planet became a water planet fairly recently due to actions of these aliens. The hero and his allies may have been some sort of pirate. The title of the book vaguely similar to “Face Upon the Waters”, enough so that when I see that book I always think for a moment it is the book I’m looking for. I remember the book as being fairly short, 200 pages or so.

Oh ditto, scared the the shit out of me in elementary school. I remember wondering how they could let kids read this, when I was a kid.

Alright, Hivemind, please help me scratch this itch; I read this short story in college, and haven’t been able to locate it since:

It was published in an anthology sometime in the 80’s or early 90’s, and it was about a rural town that had, over the years, become weird and super intelligent because of the foods (maybe just spices?) they grew. They had really subtle long term plans to dominate things to their advantage, minor, seemingly random stuff that regular people didn’t see (I seem to remember them trying to get a minor bill passed regarding taxes or something on the Mississippi river that, through a domino effect, eventually would become pivotal to their goals).

The people were thin, and their kids amused themselves by watching trains pass by and shouting out the squares of the identification numbers from one train car to the next. They were opposed by a really fat lawyer, who used to be one of them (so he alone knew what they were up to), and spent his afternoons sobbing while eating fried chicken.

It was written in first person, I think, and the hero (not the fat lawyer) spent the night in the town where he ate some of the spices and started to become more intelligent/observant/whatever.

Any help you guys could render would be great; it’s been irritating me for years now.