Sunday, 10 April 2016

Tying Up Loose Ends II

(Both James Blish and Poul Anderson have described important science fictional events occurring in different places on this stellar map.)

See here.

Chapter XXI (pp. 301-302) ties up loose end (ii) and Chapter XXII (pp. 303-310) ties up loose end (iii).

Rover crew member Carita Fenger is one formidable woman:

Jinxian, i.e., from the human colony planet, Jinx, in the Sirian System;
short and nearly as broad with massive limbs and other bodily features;
ebony skin not from African ancestry but from generations under Sirius;
hair normally sun-bleached white but now straw colored;
broad nose, big mouth and close brown eyes;
"attractive," not to me but apparently so because usually cheerful.

She has sex with two guys and tries to befriend the up-tight Markham not for sex although, when he asks if that is what she is suggesting, she is prepared to give it a go! (He is not.) Her physical and personal awesomeness are made clear on p. 211 of Man-Kzin Wars III, p. 211. Why am I listing Carita's attributes now? Because she knows exactly how to resolve the issue of loose thread (ii): something is developing between the married Captain Saxtorph and the passenger, Tyra Nordbo. Carita lends Tyra her current boyfriend.

(iii) Saxtorph identifies and neutralizes a traitor.


Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

I think Jerry Pournelle's CoDominium "future history" also uses some of the places seen in this star map. I recall mention being made of the Coalsack in THE MOTE IN GOD'S EYE and THE GRIPPING HAND.

I remember Jinx and the Jinxians. And one thing that bothered me was whether it was POSSIBLE for humans to survive and reproduce on a planet with a gravity two or three times heavier that what we have on Earth.

I think Poul Anderson would have expressed similar skepticism if he had been asked. The planet Imphotep, in his THE GAME OF EMPIRE, has a gravity "only" thirty percent heavier than Terra's. That seems to have been as much Anderson believed humans could tolerate.


Anonymous said...

Kaor, Paul!

If I recall correctly (and it's been years since I read the story, so I could recall incorrectly), Carita didn't lend her boyfriend to Tyra for sex, but for looking as if they had had sex, so Saxtorph would revise his views of Tyra, and not be tempted to commit adultery or leave his wife.

Best Regards,
Nicholas D. Rosen

Paul Shackley said...

I think you will find the sex was real. "Nobody meant to stage anything." (p. 301)