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James H. Schmitz

Book Overview: 

Ancient living machines that after millennia of stillness suddenly begin to move under their own power, for reasons that remain a mystery to men. Holati Tate discovered them—then disappeared. Trigger Argee was his closest associate—she means to find him. She's brilliant, beautiful, and skilled in every known martial art. She's worth plenty—dead or alive—to more than one faction in this obscure battle. And she's beginning to have a chilling notion that the long-vanished Masters of the Old Galaxy were wise when they exiled the plasmoids to the most distant and isolated world they knew.... (Summary from book jacket)

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .said, which had not become public knowledge so far was that Professor Mantelish actually succeeded in getting some of the plasmoids on the Old Galactic base back into operation. One plasmoid in particular.

The reason the achievement hadn't been announced was that for nearly six weeks no one except the three men directly involved in the experiments had known about them. And during that time other things occurred which made subsequent publicity seem very inadvisable.

Mantelish scowled. "We made up a report to the League the day of the initial discovery," he informed Trigger. "It was a complete and detailed report!"

"True," Holati said, "but the report the U-League got didn't happen to be the one Professor Mantelish helped make up. We'll go into that later. The plasmoid the professor was experimenting with was the 112-113 unit."

p. 67

He shifted his gaze to Mantelish. "Still want me to tell it?"

"Yes, yes!" . . . Read More

Community Reviews

The story of a strong woman, caught up in intrigue without being aware of it. I enjoyed the fresh quality of someone being manipulated and doing what normal people would do to try to get out of the situation. I also liked the continuity of relationships that obviously extended to other books, but di

This is a good old-fashioned science fiction adventure novel that originally appeared as A Tale of Two Clocks, a title which I much prefer. Back in the days when people used to complain frequently about the science fiction field not having strong female characters, Schmitz was the go-to author to re

Plasmoids are organisms which appear inanimate, created by the Old Guardians for inscrutable reasons - as is much of the action in this novel. When humans find Plasmoids they are in pairs but unbeknownst to them the smaller one is a control mechanism for the larger dominant Plasmoid. When a human sc


Ancient living machines that after millennia of stillness suddenly begin to move under their own power, for reasons that remain a mystery to men. Holati Tate discovered them -- then disappeared. Trigger Argee was his

A secret agent story in an interstellar milieu, featuring a female protagonist, "Trigger Argee", the biggest draw of the book. She's proactive, competent, but not so perfect that she's unstoppable, nor does she fall into the "man with breasts" characterization trap that lot of female action heroes d

5/10. De este autor de comienzos del XX soló leí esta novela y ahí quedó. Que, por cierto, se tradujo en castellano como "Plasmoides" (vaya usted a saber por qué)

ENGLISH: One of the two novel-sized works by J.H.Schmitz (the other is The witches of Karres), starring one of his strong women (Trigger Argee). I read this book first in 1967 in a Spanish translation, and have read it 5 times since. It is a very nice Hub space opera with a convoluted argument, alth

Trigger Argee vs the plasmoids (aka ancient alien artifacts). Watch her shoot! And dress fancy! Be knocked out! And get things explained to her! She speeds up her proactiveness at the end of the book. It's actually pretty good for a book from 1962, nice worldbuilding with a complex group of societie

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