By John Scalzi
Tor, $24.99, 302 pages
Fuzzy Nation is a new treatment of a science fiction classic: Little Fuzzy, written by H. Beam Piper in 1962. Mr. Piper wrote two other books in the series, and two more were added by other authors. Why? Because the Fuzzys are very appealing and their stories interesting. ||For the last 25 years, the planet Zarathustra has been classified as a class III planet by Earths’ Colonial Authority. Class III means there are no sentient creatures and therefore open to exploitation by the Zarathustra Company. Enter the Fuzzys.
Jack Holloway, a contract sunstone miner, and his dog Carl are invaded by first one and then several fuzzys. Fortunately for the fuzzys and unfortunately for the company, Jack Holloway is a smart, complicated man who doesn’t shoot first, but brings them to the attention of the available science staff which, even though they are company employees, are still human and an investigation into the true nature of the fuzzys ensues. As you can imagine, the legal, political and economic ramifications are huge.
Author Scalzi uses his talent in an entertaining way that is faithful to the style of the original work, but it stands alone on it’s own merits. Plus, there’s a dog.
Reviewed by Norman West