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Skylark Three (Pyramid SF, N3160) Mass Market Paperback – 1973

4.4 out of 5 stars 36 customer reviews
Book 2 of 4 in the Skylark Series

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Product Details

  • Series: Skylark (Book 2)
  • Mass Market Paperback
  • Publisher: Pyramid; 7th edition (1973)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0515031607
  • ISBN-13: 978-0515031607
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 4.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,773,769 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
I first read this book during the golden age- fourteen that is. Yet it has held a special place in my mind and heart ever since. It still gives me a thrill to think about this book even though I am now 49 going on 50. For sheer breadth of imagination, scope of theme and pace of action it is one of the best books I have ever read. It is ,of course, sadly dated by todays standards- but you must realize that when this book was written the very idea of space travel was nothing but sheer fantasy to the average person. At a time when no human had ever traveled faster than 300 miles per hour E. E. Smith was writing about star travel and doing it in a convincing and entertaining manner. If you like alien villains, Smith gives you the Fenachrone, surely one of the most arrogant, vile races ever committed to paper. If you like human villains, Smith gives you "Blackie" Duqesne the pure, utterly amoral scientist. If you like heroes, Smith gives you Richard Ballinger Seaton, brilliant scientist and engineer and his friend and partner Martin Crane- not to mention their wives who play a part in the plot that is well above the level of "rescue the Damsel" that was the standard fare at the time this was written. If you like space ships and weapons that boggle the mind, Smith gives you miles-long spaceships built of materials of unbelievable strength dueling in intergalactic space. And finally, there's the Norlaminians, a race devoted heart and soul to the accumulation of knowledge of every sort- and a good thing too, for without their help, beating the Fenachrone would have been impossible. Smith has a way of writing about impossible things that makes you think: Wouldn't it be great if ......... If you can suspend your disbelief for a couple of hours I guarantee that this book will leave you wanting more.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Seaton and Crane blast off again into the infinite unknown, with their coiffed wives and their trusty Asian houseboy at their sides, ...

and, oddly enough, turn out to vastly superior to any of the other creatures in this big, dark universe. They whup the goobers out of beings of pure intellect, millions of years old (out of pre-emptive self-defense). They beat the tar out of beings from a higher dimension who, for some peculiar reason, seem to fall apart pretty easily (but spare the poor innocent shark). They send scurrying the evil green beings - Our Kind aren't green, you know. They are cast adrift in the infinite darkness of space. Good thing it's not a very big infinity, and it turns out to be full of people like Seaton and Crane (Anglo faces, pretty much, and they keep their women-folk invisibly tucked away somewhere), in desperate battle against the lesser races of the universe.

It's big, it's bold, and it's a 1930s view of women, race, and unbridled technological optimism. They guy in the white hat (white guy in a white hat, one may assume) creates new laws of nature almost as often as he violates the old ones. They're peaceable folks, and they'll bring your your star system down around your pseudopods if you say otherwise.

Lots of people will find this stuff thoroughly offensive. Fine. It wasn't written to offend, it was written for the sensibilities of a different era. If you can take it in the spirit it was meant, it's wonderful, swashbuckling space adventure, as devoid of reason and physical plausibility as it is of political rectitude.

//wiredweird
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Format: Hardcover
E.E. "Doc" Smith wrote space opera better than anyone before or since. Leave your sense of disbelief behind and hop aboard the "Skylark" series!

Personally, I liked "Skylark" better than Smith's other top series ("Lensmen") because it was just plain more darned fun, less pretentious, more focussed on heroic heroes and dastardly villans, and didn't reach so much to cosmic concepts.

In both series, Smith tries to top his previous book with even greater heroics (last time we blew up a planet, so this time we'll blow up a star and next time a galaxy!) This can lead to problems in the later volumes as he runs out of superlatives ... but have no fear! In "Valeron" Smith tries adding the FOURTH dimension to play in (which makes his one-dimension characters two-dimensional, almost.) It ends up being a lot of fun.

Don't read this expecting anything as deep as, say, "Star Wars" <g> but do have a good time!

(But I STRONGLY suggest reading the other books in the series first, starting with "The Skylark of Space" because the background will help.)
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
If you're a computer geek, this is probably the best of the 4 books - I mean, just imagine a computer that's a mile in diameter and then think about how big a website THAT could host ;).

I don't know - the very first SF book I ever read was Skylark 3 (bought it at Woolco in Dover DE in probably 1972/73, maybe? anyway) so I'm a sucker for Doc's "style" anyway (and now you know why I'm not a published writer either - oh, wait, I am - but just boring programming books ;)).

Anyway - I'd have to recommend this book for anybody that likes blowing up planets and stopping time and ethereal omnipotent 6th dimension entities or just a really cool book that'll take you away from the troubles of the day.

So buy it already!
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