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Little Fuzzy Paperback – September 13, 2013

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The extra-solar world of Zarathustra is devoid of intelligent life, or at least it was thought to be until prospector Jack Holloway discovers a race of Ewok-like Fuzzies. But the company that has been exploiting the planet for its resources will lose its charter if sapient life is discovered, so Holloway must find a way to keep the Fuzzies from being foundin order to keep the charter. Holsopple reads in a pleasant, sonorous tone, using one unadorned voice for narration and a series of others for character dialogue. The vocal shifts are subtle but effective, and make the dialogue sound rather like real conversation, rather than simply words being read from a page. Some of the dialogue is a bit silly (Holloway constantly refers to himself as "Pappy Jack" when talking to the Fuzzies), but Holsopple manages to pull it off. The end result is a faithful adaptation of Piper's beloved 1962 classic (a Best Novel Hugo Award nominee) that fans both new and old should enjoy. (Feb.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

About the Author

H. Beam Piper was one of science fiction's most enigmatic writers. In 1946 Piper appeared seemingly from out of nowhere, already at the top of his form. He published a number of memorable short stories and successfully made the turn to major novelist. Even those who counted Piper among their friends learned very little about the man (or his previous life as a railroad yard bull in Altoona, Pennsylvania) before he committed suicide in November 1964.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 142 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (September 13, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1461068150
  • ISBN-13: 978-1461068150
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.3 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.3 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (118 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,007,886 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Michele L. Worley on June 16, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
What happens when an obviously sapient species is discovered on a human colony planet - but the usual rules of thumb used to separate people from animals in law don't apply?

In the Federation, there really isn't a legal definition of sapience, just a handy criterion of talk-and-build-a-fire intended to keep greedy speculators, sadists, and other lowlifes from claiming they couldn't tell that an obviously inhabited planet *was* inhabited. Zarathustra is legally a Class-III planet with no native intelligent species, so the Chartered Zarathustra Company essentially owns it outright, and makes a *lot* of money on its resulting monopoly on sunstones, not to mention a long list of assorted exports the CZC extracts from Zarathustra's virgin ecology.

Then one day Jack Holloway, a freelance sunstone prospector, comes home to find his door open - and a tiny creature, no more than two feet tall and covered in golden fur, in his shower stall. Being an independent-minded bachelor of a certain age doesn't mean one can't get lonely, and Jack's inclined to let the gutsy little guy hang around. Jack names him "Little Fuzzy", and quickly notices that his new friend is bright. So bright that he doesn't need to be shown things twice. So bright that he can generalize.

So bright that he can not only use tools Jack makes for him, but brought some of his own with him.

He and the rest of his hunter-gatherer family just don't seem to be able to talk, and they haven't mastered fire yet.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Stephen B. O'Blenis on April 26, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Although quite short, the fast-paced, truly moving, and often very comedic "Little Fuzzy" is one of my choices for science fiction literature's truly great novels. The wit, the charm, and the brilliant characters will all stay with the reader long after the final page of this first of H. Beam Piper's Fuzzy Sapiens series.

Zarathustra is a planet classed as uninhabited, which means the entire planet can be owned by a corporation, which it is, by the Zarathustra Company, which enjoys a high profit by mining the resources-rich planet. One day gem prospector Jack Holloway comes across a member of a previously undocumented species - a tiny, golden-furred little biped who he dubs 'Little Fuzzy', and shortly thereafter encounters Little Fuzzy's family. The fuzzies are cute, adorable, and often hilarious, and they're also quite socially advanced, including in the use of tools they themselves make. Holloway is convinced, and soon some of his human friends are too, that the Fuzzies are fully sentient and entitled to all the rights of any other sentient species.

Which means the Fuzzies would be the owners of their own planet, and the Zarathustra Company's deed would be automatically null and void.

The unscrupulous Zarathustra Company is determined not to see that happen, at any costs.

And thus we enter into a meeting of the science fiction novel, the legal courtroom drama, and an indepth examination of ethics. The book skillfully tackles these subjects seriously without forsaking the fun, playful side of its other main facet, represented so well by the gregarious Fuzzies themselves.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Peter MacDonald on April 24, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Little Fuzzy is written by H. Beam Piper and is the first in a series of many books on the fuzzys. The Plot of the book is simple enough, old man finds little furry people, old man keeps little furry people, old man trys to get little furry people recognized as sapient life forms. If you can get past the first 2 pages of scientific mumbo jumbo that has nothing to do with the story the you will be fine. The book is great! I generaly do not read sci fi, but I made an exception for little fuzzy, and you should to!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Paul Camp on January 24, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I wonder how many readers have given attention to how many H. Beam Piper characters are smokers. In "Omnilingual" (_Analog_, 1957), the heroine, Martha Dane nervously chain-smokes cigarettes as she worries about whether she will solve the problem of the Martian language. Her fellow archeologist, Dr. Selim von Ohlhorst, smokes a carved pipe. The head of the expedition, Col. Hubert Penrose, smokes cigarettes from a silver case. In _Junkyard Planet_ (1962), the hero, Conn Maxwell, and his father puff cigars. (They prefer the tobacco from their native planet over Terran tobacco.) In _Lord Kalvan of Otherwhen_ (1965), Verkin Vall and his wife smoke cigarettes, as does Hadron Dalla. In _Little Fuzzy_ (1962), Pappy Jack Holloway, the sunstone prospector, smokes a pipe-- a trait that the Fuzzies find fascinating. (To Pappy Jack's credit, he does not allow the Fuzzies to smoke his pipe.) I invite you to find other examples.

I don't know whether Piper himself was a smoker, nor do I know what were his personal thoughts about tobacco. But certainly many of his characters smoke. I suspect that it was simply a matter of characterization. What his characters smoked and how they smoked dramatised whether they were young or old, insecure or calm, laid-back or aggressive. In the same vein, shaving habits or table manners can reveal something about a fictional character.

In any event, _Little Fuzzy_ is hands down Piper's best novel, and the secret is not hard to find. It lies in the delightful characterization of his little natives of Zarathustra that immediately have you rooting for them from the very begining. Of course, we understand the motives of the Zarathustra Mining Company. They began operations believing that there was no native intelligent life on the planet.
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