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Lone Star Planet Paperback – May 19, 2013

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 78 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (May 19, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1456498517
  • ISBN-13: 978-1456498511
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.2 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,436,659 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Dr. van der Linden on April 1, 2007
Format: Paperback
...

Originally published as A PLANET FOR TEXANS in the magazine FANTASTIC UNIVERSE (Vol. 7, No. 3, March 1957), this novella was expanded by John J. McGuire and published as a short novel in 1958.

This work is a clear and obvious tribute to H.L. Mencken's classic essay "The Malevolent Jobholder" (from THE AMERICAN MERCURY, June 1924), in which Mencken proposed:

"...that it shall be no longer malum in se for a citizen to pummel, cowhide, kick, gouge, cut, wound, bruise, maim, burn, club, bastinado, flay, or even lynch a [government] jobholder, and that it shall be malum prohibitum only to the extent that the punishment exceeds the jobholder's deserts. The amount of this excess, if any, may be determined very conveniently by a petit jury, as other questions of guilt are now determined."

In 1999, the novel won the Prometheus Award, Hall of Fame Award for Best Classic Libertarian SF Novel. This tongue-in-cheek tale features a planet of Texans whose dinosaur-sized cattle have to be herded with tanks and helicopers, and whose system of government derives its character from Mencken's essay.

The protagonist is an insubordinate Terran junior diplomat who is appointed as ambassador to this cantankerously independent planet in the hope that he will be assassinated (as the previous ambassador had been), thereby justifying the forcible invasion and conquest of the Texans. The crux of the story is the trial of the previous ambassador's assassins - actually paid killers hired by an alien empire also planning invasion - under a legal system that considers the killing of a practicing politician to be justifiable homicide.

An interesting premise, carried out with typical '50s-style space opera ingenuity and light-hearted disrespect for government authority.

--
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By h lynn keith on August 8, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
1. Short review: :-)

2. Long review:

2.1. What I liked: Piper's satire.

Roller-coaster or walk-in-the-park? It tries to be a roller coaster, but most of the action happens in a courtroom, so it is a walk in the park threatening to become a roller coaster.

Free and worth the download.

2.2. What I did not like: Nothing. Once I got into the over-the-top satire, it was all good.

2.3. Who I think is the audience: Science fiction fans. H Beam Piper fans.

2.4. Is the book appropriate for children to read? Yes. There is killing, but it is not graphic.

2.5. On the basis of reading this book, will I buy the author's next book? Yes.

2.6. The plot in a nutshell:

Stephen Silk, one of the Solar League's spies, finds himself appointed the Ambassador to New Texas to fill the vacancy left by the late Silas Cumshaw. Some inhabitants of New Texas killed Ambassador Cumshaw. Silk is to investigate Cumshaw's death and determine if the aggressive z'Srauff -- whom the Solar League suspects of planning to invade New Texas -- had a part in the murder. It becomes apparent to Silk that many who sought his appointment hope that this will get him killed, too.

During his journey to New Texas, Silk familiarizes himself with the local political situation, with his personnel, and with the side-arms the League provided him. On New Texas, everyone goes armed.

Soon after his arrival on New Texas, Silk finds himself locked in the Court of Political Justice. "[T]he defendant, Wilbur Whately, is here charged with political irresponsibility and excessive atrocity in exercising his constitutional right of criticism of a practicing politician." The defendant killed S.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kurt A. Johnson TOP 1000 REVIEWER on December 17, 2013
Format: Paperback
This story stands alone, which is to say that is it is not in Piper’s Terro-Human Future History or Paratime milieus. New Texas was founded when the whole ornery state of Texas built themselves spaceships and headed out to the new frontier – space. But now, these rugged and independent New Texans are the target of an expansive race of extraterrestrials, and it’s up to the Solar League’s ambassador to guide them back into Earth’s embrace. Well, mister, it’s going to take one tough and wily ambassador to steer the New Texans – but is Stephen Silk that tough and that wily?

This story is absolutely great! H. Beam Piper (1904-64) is one of the little recognized greats of science fiction. He was an expert at creating fascinating worlds that were both fantastic and yet utterly believable, and this story shows his writing ability off to great effect. If you like good sci-fi, then you will like this book. If you are a fan of H. Beam Piper, then it is a must-have!
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Format: Kindle Edition
Prior to its annexation into the United States, the state of Texas was once an independent nation. What if future Texans decide to relive the glory days of their 19th-century autonomy by relocating to another planet? That’s the premise that underlies the 1958 science fiction novel Lone Star Planet, written by H. Beam Piper and John J. McGuire. The story takes place in the year 2193. Stephen Silk is a diplomat working for the Solar League, an interplanetary coalition. After publishing an essay that criticizes his government’s policies, he is promoted to the undesirable post of Ambassador to Capella IV, also known as New Texas. A century earlier the planet was founded by a group of colonists from the Lone Star State, and many of their homeland’s traditional customs live on in the planet’s present culture. Silk’s mission is to persuade the reluctant New Texans to join the Solar League, while also investigating the assassination of his predecessor. His task is complicated by the fact that, in the New Texas legal code, the killing of politicians is legal, as long as you can prove that they deserved it.

Piper and McGuire take obvious delight in poking fun at Texan cultural stereotypes. New Texas is the meat supplier of the galaxy. The preferred livestock is a dinosaur-sized race of supercows. The native costume consists of boots, loud shirts, and a pistol on each hip. A raucous barbecue accompanied by square dance music and gunshots is considered a state dinner. While cleverly lampooning the popular image of Texas, the authors simultaneously celebrate the independent spirit and self-sufficiency for which the Lone Star State is famous. This novel is chiefly a work of political satire, but it’s not so much the Texans that are being satirized.
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