Eric Frank Russell: Three to Conquer. A jpoc book review.

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JPOC Rating

Six out of ten.

A good read indeed.

My review

SF from the nineteen fifties often does not wear very well at all. That is most emphatically not the case with the work of Eric Frank Russell.

Set it 1980, this novel tells the tale of the return of the first three astronauts to travel to the plant Venus. They return carrying a viral disease that takes over the minds of its victims and controls them with a form of collective consciousness.

Only one man can stand in their path. Wade Harper, a natural telepath, can sense their possession of a victim and together with the police and FBI, he sets out to track down and eliminate mankind's new foes.

The story is told as a sort of Chandleresque detective mystery and it is a compelling book. Even now, almost half a century on, it is still a great read. One reason for that is the author's talent for narrative. The pace is spot on. The reader never loses interest or feels the need for a break.