Read Star Smashers of the Galaxy Rangers by Harry Harrison Online


The wild, galaxy-hopping adventures of brash young scientists Jerry Courtenay and Chuck van Chider are at the core of this classic space opera. When the two college students develop a faster-than-light space drive in their homemade workshed, they decide to sneak it aboard their football team's airplane as a prank. The boyish plan backfires, however, and the boys find themsThe wild, galaxy-hopping adventures of brash young scientists Jerry Courtenay and Chuck van Chider are at the core of this classic space opera. When the two college students develop a faster-than-light space drive in their homemade workshed, they decide to sneak it aboard their football team's airplane as a prank. The boyish plan backfires, however, and the boys find themselves, along with their crush Sally and the seemingly loveable school caretaker, Old John, hurtling through the solar system towards Titan—an icy moon of Saturn inhabited by hideous ice creatures. Titan and the 20th century are only square one as the foursome becomes embroiled in a vast, intergalactic, century-jumping battle....

Title : Star Smashers of the Galaxy Rangers
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781932100839
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 212 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Star Smashers of the Galaxy Rangers Reviews

  • Daniel
    2019-06-03 04:56

    This is such a fun read. Harrison is one of those writers who can cover a lot of material in a handful of sentences. He's also got a sharp sense of wit: witness his satirical take on Cold War politics, gender relations, and sexuality in this slim adventure. Moreover, Harrison doesn't hesitate to mess with convention and take his story in directions that some would consider controversial. You will never guess where the characters take their lives by the story's end.This is the kind of writing that keeps me interested in science fiction. The massive, multi-book stories that contemporary writers offer today may look epic, but their size is too daunting; a writer has to be incredible to hold my interest that long, and much of the prose that I encounter is passable at best. Harrison is someone who can fit a number of ideas in a fraction of the pages - and make you laugh. His is a talent that I recommend to any reader.

  • Ian Thomas
    2019-05-28 05:49

    As a longtime fan of the Lensman series by E. E. "Doc" Smith, how could I NOT love Star Smashers? It's as clever a spoof as anything by the Zucker brothers. Fun, goofy, and full of the best faux drama you'll ever find.If you want a rollicking good space adventure with iron-jawed heroes, damsels in distress, evil aliens, and epic scope, all done with tongue firmly ensconced in cheek...this one's for you.

  • Derek
    2019-06-04 05:00

    It's rare that you read the first sentence and realize that this book is going to be trouble. And you finish the first page and realize that you are going to hate this book. And you thumb randomly through the contents, and whatever happens to catch your eye makes you even more annoyed.And then you put it down.

  • Manny
    2019-06-17 08:48

    Does for classic space opera what Team America: World Police does for Thunderbirds. Though I'm sorry to say there's not quite as much gratuitous sex.

  • Michael
    2019-05-28 09:46

    Now, before anyone accuses me of missing the point here, I get that this book is satire. You can, I guess, accuse me of not having a sense of humor, because I didn’t think it was terribly funny. Harrison seems to have decided to “parody” the style of macho sci fi he grew up with, and to deliberately write the worst book he could manage to write in the process. In fairness, the worst book he could write is still better than the best most authors ever manage.The book is about a couple of college jocks who also happen to be scientific geniuses that stumble across the secret to faster-than-light travel and begin an adventure across the galaxy in a 747 their school uses to transport the football team. They fight various bug-eyed monsters and intergalactic threats, with the nature of the quest becoming increasingly improbable at each new development. Along with them comes the school’s black janitor (who is a Communist spy at the outset, but converts to Americanism along the way) and a shapely cheerleader who spends a lot of time in the galley fixing sandwiches. If that description strikes you as funny, have at it, but to me it’s sort of like expecting people to see the funny side of exactly what most sci fi really was like not terribly long ago (and what certain sad puppies would like to see it become again). This book actually redeemed itself for me a little at the end, where Harrison sticks his finger in the eye of anyone who had missed the satire and actually enjoyed all the macho silliness beforehand. Would that Robert Heinlein had done the same with Starship Troopers.

  • Simon Mcleish
    2019-06-24 10:54

    Originally published on my blog here in March 2001.As spoofs go, this must rank as one of the most outrageous ever written. Like many science fiction fans, I have a considerable affection for the space operas of writers likeE.E."Doc" Smith, but I would have to admit that they are poorly written, sexist and sometimes - usually unconsciously - racist. (They succeed because of their imagination - things like galaxy destroying weapons - even though written at a time when Mars was as far as most science fiction was willing to travel.)The parodistic relationship with Smith in particular is very clear at the start, which is based extremely closely on his first novel, Skylark. Two college boys are playing with a particle accelerator and some cheddar cheese when they discover a portable space warp. They set off with this in a Jumbo Jet, with their girlfriend (who can't decide which of them she prefers) and school janitor and Communist spy John, the token black character.The story is funny in its own right, as well as being a merciless parody of the shortcomings of the genre. It also possesses a wonderful twist at the end which, like many of the jokes, would be spoilt by repetition.

  • Leila Anani
    2019-05-29 12:35

    Comic SF parody will appeal to fans of Douglas Adams and things like Kilgore Trout's Venus of the Half Shell. We have three university students - 2 genius guys and the girl they both fancy who has a BA in Home Economics - they invent a new substance called Cheddite when a student prank substitutes cheese for the element they were supposed to be bombarding - it gets weaponised and produces a device that can (basically) teleport things. During an experiment which gets ruined by the intervention of a Russian agent, the four get transported into outer space and set themselves up as Galaxy Rangers having intergalactic adventures with various alien races.I'm not a huge fan of this sort of comedy, but it hums along merrily enough - It is lightening paced and very episodic. What I did like was the ending where Sally ends up with the (reformed) Russian agent and our two genius boys decide they love each other - so the happy couples live happily ever after - its just such a perfect parody of the Flash Gordon style SF.This one didn't make me laugh out loud as much of Harry Harrison has in the past, but its a silly, fun pulpy SF adventure.

  • Randy
    2019-05-26 07:43

    A hilarious space romp that takes every trope of the genre, I mean all of them, and stands them up on end.The males are all experts on everything, though only college students, top notch athletes, the female is suitably scatterbrained, the mysterious Old John, a janitor, more than he seems. We have aliens that are good and bad, all variations of the SF magazine covers of the early days(just look at the cover).A prank, slipping cheddar cheese into an experiment, nets the crew a metal element, dubbed Cheddite, that enables them to invent a new star drive. Installing it into the school's personal 747 for testing(the boys have jet level pilot licenses), a slip of the finger sends them instantly to Saturn, it's moon Titan, and then further on into the universe where they meet a host of alien races, form the Galaxy Rangers, modeled after the Texas Rangers, and get into marvelous space opera battles.Wickedly funny.

  • Steven Rundle
    2019-06-18 10:47

    A truly satirical book, copyrighted in 1973, Harrison makes fun of many socially forbidden subjects, some of which are still headline news forty years later. Deflating technological egos is just the surface layer. The treatment of women as empty-headed cooking cleaning objects, nationalism, and war are all skewered, made ridiculous with storytelling skill that kept me reading, laughing, and thinking. Although the issues are front page now, I don’t know of any other genre than science fiction that could have used a story of childish action fiction with such thinly disguised biting commentary, transparent references to gender and racial equality, the dangers of blind belief, and social issues as a backdrop to craft an enduring and effective message.

  • Anna
    2019-05-25 08:49

    A dear friend recommended this book as cheering when one is feeling under the weather. She was not wrong. 'Star Smashers of the Galaxy Rangers' makes Harrison's Stainless Steel Rat series look staid and sensible. It is an absurd parody of space adventures, starring two handsome and athletic young men of great scientific genius, a spy turned good, and a constantly put-upon young woman called Sally. After inadvertently inventing a super-weapon of astounding destructive power, the heroic four go marauding around space in a modified 747 plane, getting involved in alien wars and pulling off daring feats against impossible odds. The whole thing is wholly tongue-in-cheek and ridiculous, poking fun at macho space opera tropes. It was great fun from start to finish.

  • kvon
    2019-06-13 04:56

    Parody of painful old sf serials. Some parts were fun, like the narrative repetition, but some parts were painful, like the conversion of the Russian spy ('but your dad's american, therefore you are too!'"oh, you're right! Go America!") Two smart handsome athletic young college age men (I have a masters in neurosurgery, no) accidentally irradiate some cheese to make a teleporter, and along with the aformentioned Russian spy and the love interest girl (who is good at making sandwiches) take their football team's 747 and end up in space meeting lots of aliens. Even if you can't read the whole thing, the final chapter is amusing.

  • Josephine
    2019-06-13 08:32

    I've never gotten more than a hundred pages or so into space opera books like the Lensman/men series before tossing them across the room in exasperation at their purple prose, implausible situations, testosterone laden posturing of impossibly brilliant and athletic male protagonists and misogyny. So what's not to like of a sendup of space opera with a couple of overgrown McGyver style boy scouts, which additionally takes on Cold War paranoia, gender relations, and racial stereotyping?The whole book is something of a shaggy dog story with a twist ending, aside from the lampooning of the whole space opera subgenre of science fiction.

  • Jim Razinha
    2019-06-20 04:36

    Another for my Year of Nostalgic Re-reads...this one I read last (and just the once) sometime in high school, so call it nearly 40 years. I've read a few books over the years that were described as hilarious send-ups of something or other, but this one actually is. Harrison embraces, uses and abuses, and skewers every cliche from every pop science fiction pulp magazine, action film, B-movies in general, throw in a Spillane hamfest and Buckaroo Bonzai, and I'm sure a few more genres I'm leaving out. Satire, parody, misogyny, comedy...dude wrapped it all in a neat little campy package. But I don't need to read it again for at least another forty years.

  • Mawgojzeta
    2019-05-27 09:42

    7/10/2014) I decided to give this book another go. Although I enjoyed it better than I had before (originally 1 star), I still did not find it consistently enjoyable. I did manage one laugh-out-loud moment, so I am raising this to 2 stars.(4/9/2009)Painfully awful. Could not even finish it. I found the humor just didn't do it for me. I understood what he was trying accomplish and I wanted to like it. Tried so hard because I love everything else I have read from him. My son (17 at the time) really liked it.

  • Glen
    2019-06-14 08:57

    Read this on the occasion of Harry Harrison's passing. So much of the humorous style in it immediately reminded me of his other books which I loved so much. The fact that it's a parody comes across a little heavyhanded at times, but still it manages to tell an amusing story and end on a hilarious note.

  • Anika
    2019-06-09 10:46

    It's so typically and unapologetically Harry Harrison that there's not any way to rate this book. It was fun, it was stupid, the amazing coincidences were there. The shocker, for me, was the absolute end. And that was after being amazed at the silly-fun twist at the beginning of the book. If you like Harrison, then you'll like this book.

  • Bruce
    2019-05-31 09:00

    Written in the early 70's as a satire on the Lensman books, taking many of the ludicrous plot elements from EE Doc Smith's groundbreaking but not so well written series and weaving a humorous space opera around them.Easy quick read and reasonably funny, much more so if you have struggled through the Lensman books and get some of the in jokes.

  • Eric Simmons
    2019-05-29 06:54

    A well written parody of the space opera genre. As space operas go the writing can pretty bad, and a bit sexist and racist. Having just finished a couple of Edgar Rice Burroughs, John Carter of Mars novels I have become aware of the genres shortcomings. This novel is very funny, sometimes laugh out loud funny, as well a great adventure.

  • Chris
    2019-05-31 08:53

    I got into Harry Harrison because of the "Deathword" and the "Slippery Jim diGriz" stories (the Stainless Steel Rat). This was the payoff! Gawd, he must have had fun writing this. The "Pleasantville Eagle!" "Cheddite!" The "Hardy Boys" on a more believeable level. I had seen so much of this novel in other works, but I madly giggled all the way through.

  • Ed
    2019-06-13 04:40

    SciFi - Formerly titled "Plague from Space". Space ship returns from Jupiter and lands at JFK airport in NYC. The crew's second officer leaves the ship fatally ill; shortly thereafter, birds come down with the same illness and reinfect humans disposing of them. How will humanity come to terms with this plague?

  • Dex
    2019-06-02 11:36

    Read this many years ago when I was an impressionable pre-teen. Loved it then. With hindsight I realise the cheese Harrison was featuring in pastiche. The ending is a fantastic laugh, especially considering when it was written. Brilliant. Just brilliant.

  • Jim
    2019-06-12 08:59

    A spoof of Campbellian SF & it is funny - once. Google John W. Campbell, a very influential SF writer/editor in the 50's-60's. Earth men were smart, courageous WASPs, aliens were dumb, cowardly BEMs & wanted our women. Earthman ingenuity & courage beat the BEMs EVERY time!

  • Daniel
    2019-06-02 08:40

    This book is not great, but I don't believe it was meant to be. Instead of striving for greatness, it embraces the worst cliches of the sci-fi genre. And if you're a fan of deus ex machina style plot devices, you're in for a treat. There are more than enough to go around.

  • Niall
    2019-05-29 09:49

    Giving it a three just now because it's been years since I read it. I remember it being very funny, but don't really remember the details. I'm sure my rating will increase when or if I get round to reading it again.

  • NightAuditMan
    2019-06-14 10:58

    A very campy sci-fi send up with questionable science and protagonists that never really seem to get into any real danger. It was a light read and can easily be polished off on a lazy Sunday, or is good for a bathroom reader.

  • Jonathan
    2019-06-08 08:55

    A comic classic, the radio adaption is better.

  • David
    2019-06-19 05:52

    Not liking this much. Try it again another time.

  • Kevin
    2019-06-09 09:45

    A parody of movie serials in the "Flash Gordon" vein (each chapter ends in a cliffhanger) this was a lot of fun and I feel remiss for not having checked out anything else by Harrison

  • Robert
    2019-06-18 07:45

    Meh. Mildly amusing, deus ex machinas in every chapter, I understand homage and pastiche, I just don't think this is a particularly good one.

  • Jimmy Gröhn
    2019-05-28 13:00

    Jag tyckte att den här boken var toppen när jag var liten, nu var den rätt konstig. Men på ett bra sätt.