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Time Crime by H. Beam Piper, Science Fiction, Adventure

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This short novel by H. Beam Piper was originally published in two parts in Astounding Science Fiction, February and March of 1955, and also appeared in the 1981 collection Paratime. In the world in which Time Crime takes place, human society has developed the technology to move laterally between parallel universes. The heroes of this story, Verken Vall and his wife Hadron This short novel by H. Beam Piper was originally published in two parts in Astounding Science Fiction, February and March of 1955, and also appeared in the 1981 collection Paratime. In the world in which Time Crime takes place, human society has developed the technology to move laterally between parallel universes. The heroes of this story, Verken Vall and his wife Hadron Dalla, are ready to embark on a long-overdue vacation, when the Paratime Police send them both to investigate rumors of slavery in the Esaron Sector. Like many of Piper's stories, this is a police procedural, set in the world of the future. Free audiobook: http://www.podiobooks.com/title/time-...


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This short novel by H. Beam Piper was originally published in two parts in Astounding Science Fiction, February and March of 1955, and also appeared in the 1981 collection Paratime. In the world in which Time Crime takes place, human society has developed the technology to move laterally between parallel universes. The heroes of this story, Verken Vall and his wife Hadron This short novel by H. Beam Piper was originally published in two parts in Astounding Science Fiction, February and March of 1955, and also appeared in the 1981 collection Paratime. In the world in which Time Crime takes place, human society has developed the technology to move laterally between parallel universes. The heroes of this story, Verken Vall and his wife Hadron Dalla, are ready to embark on a long-overdue vacation, when the Paratime Police send them both to investigate rumors of slavery in the Esaron Sector. Like many of Piper's stories, this is a police procedural, set in the world of the future. Free audiobook: http://www.podiobooks.com/title/time-...

30 review for Time Crime by H. Beam Piper, Science Fiction, Adventure

  1. 4 out of 5

    SciFiOne

    2019 grade Z = abandoned. A long confusing story about a massive multilevel multi-time society. The time cops find an illegal slave operation going and set out to stop it. It was not that interesting and it was so confusing that I gave up when another entirely new POV popped up. I think I finished about half of it. It's hard to tell in these Kindle Mega-pack collections. Not recommended. 2019 grade Z = abandoned. A long confusing story about a massive multilevel multi-time society. The time cops find an illegal slave operation going and set out to stop it. It was not that interesting and it was so confusing that I gave up when another entirely new POV popped up. I think I finished about half of it. It's hard to tell in these Kindle Mega-pack collections. Not recommended.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Perry Whitford

    Punchy yarn about human trafficking between timelines, going on for ten years and possibly amounting to millions of transported slaves. Verkan Vall and his wife Dalla lead the investigation for the Paratime Police, transporting between dimensions and uncovering a conspiracy of Wizard Traders that may go all the way up to the top. The future writers of <>Star Trek<> would have been proud to write such dialogue as this: 'Look; here are a hundred men and women who have been shifted from one time-line Punchy yarn about human trafficking between timelines, going on for ten years and possibly amounting to millions of transported slaves. Verkan Vall and his wife Dalla lead the investigation for the Paratime Police, transporting between dimensions and uncovering a conspiracy of Wizard Traders that may go all the way up to the top. The future writers of <>Star Trek<> would have been proud to write such dialogue as this: 'Look; here are a hundred men and women who have been shifted from one time-line, on one paratemporal sector of probability, to another. Why, the world from which these people came doesn't even exist in this space-time continuum. There's only one way they could have gotten here, and that's the way we did—in a Ghaldron-Hesthor paratemporal transposition field.' After you've ploughed through all the jargon and silly names Piper bombards you with from the outset, what emerges is a fairly sophisticated police procedural alongside additional extrapolations from the field of speculative psychology, such as narco-hypnotic interrogation and pseudo-memories. As for the Paratime Police themselves, I can't say that I liked their own society, which was highly hierarchical in the vein of Huxley's Brave New World, with servants in place of slaves, a right-wing utopia contemptuous of all proletarians and the political left. I have my reservations about Piper's politics, but he undoubtedly wrote with unusual force and intelligence compared to most of his contemporaries.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Lee

    About five pages into this book I felt terribly confused, so did a little research and discovered that it's the penultimate tale in Piper's Paratime series of stories. Once I knew what the oft-mentioned "levels" were and a few other tidbits I began again and was a little more able to follow what was going on. The premise as a whole was fairly interesting, but I found it hard to get that enthralled by the political intrigue having not read the other books in the series. The characters' names are a About five pages into this book I felt terribly confused, so did a little research and discovered that it's the penultimate tale in Piper's Paratime series of stories. Once I knew what the oft-mentioned "levels" were and a few other tidbits I began again and was a little more able to follow what was going on. The premise as a whole was fairly interesting, but I found it hard to get that enthralled by the political intrigue having not read the other books in the series. The characters' names are all a little tough to remember, but there are only half a dozen that you really need to distinguish and they're all fairly easy to get to grips with, eventually. Methinks if I ever read the earlier books in this series I'll revisit this one and hopefully get a little more out of it.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Wil C. Fry

    It’s an imperfect book with interesting ideas and characters. Mostly I was flummoxed by far too many characters with little to distinguish between them, personal pronouns used often without it being clear to whom they referred, and far too little exposition about the world and society around them.I wrote a longer review when I read this in 2015. It’s an imperfect book with interesting ideas and characters. Mostly I was flummoxed by far too many characters with little to distinguish between them, personal pronouns used often without it being clear to whom they referred, and far too little exposition about the world and society around them.I wrote a longer review when I read this in 2015.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Ronald Spitzer

    Re-read this one. I read it years ago. The purpose was to refresh my memory of 1st level civilization and Paratime Police. I read all the Kalvan books a year ago so now I will read Paratime Trouble next which will go into the non-Kalvin troubles referenced in those books. Thank you John Carr for making these books available and continuing the series.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Adam Windsor

    A rather pedestrian effort from ol' HBP, this. It relies a fair bit on you knowing the main characters already, and the antagonists are pretty much entirely an "off screen" presence, which isn't really conducive to my deep engagement with the storyline. Not bad, but not memorable. A rather pedestrian effort from ol' HBP, this. It relies a fair bit on you knowing the main characters already, and the antagonists are pretty much entirely an "off screen" presence, which isn't really conducive to my deep engagement with the storyline. Not bad, but not memorable.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Briana

    Read on LibriVox (free audio books in the public domain).

  8. 5 out of 5

    Richard

    I stopped reading at page 68. The story has an interesting premise but a ship load of details kills the story.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Bryan

    You can download this and read it for free - the link is even included on Goodreads, but a quick search will find it elsewhere. Okay, so I've just finished, and unfortunately I'm vastly underwhelmed. I'm not deleting it from my phone yet, because I plan to reread it and see if I can get more out of it the second time. Frankly, I got confused in keeping track of the various characters, and not knowing who was who, the plot became befuddling. Fortunately, it's a short item, and it won't take me long You can download this and read it for free - the link is even included on Goodreads, but a quick search will find it elsewhere. Okay, so I've just finished, and unfortunately I'm vastly underwhelmed. I'm not deleting it from my phone yet, because I plan to reread it and see if I can get more out of it the second time. Frankly, I got confused in keeping track of the various characters, and not knowing who was who, the plot became befuddling. Fortunately, it's a short item, and it won't take me long to reread. So, be warned, if you want to read this, you should take care to keep the characters straight in your mind. Unlike Jack Vance, who makes up nonsense names that are evocative and crisp, Piper's made-up names seem like random gibberish. And worse, they all follow a pattern: two syllables for the first name, and one syllable for the last name. Piper's habit of always using the full name just confuses things more. Let's see if I can create a primer on the characters of Time Crime: Verkan Vall - our hero, who works for the Paratime Police Tortha Karf - Chief of Paratime Police Skordran Kirv - undercover agent on Third Level Esaron Sector Salgath Trod - Executive Councilman, and leader of the Opposition in Council Ranthar Jard - Subchief for Third Level Kholgoor Sector Yandar Yadd - reporter Lovranth Rolk - Paratime Police - Home Time Line section of Paratime Code Enforcement Division Kostran Galth - lookalike for Salgath Trod, currently working as field agent for Paratime Police Minor Appearances by: Jandar Jard - theatrical designer Thalvan Dras - nobleman who owns Consolidated Foodstuffs (big man with black beard) Vulthor Tharn - current Subchief for Third Level Esaron Sector (due to retire soon) Gathon Dard - special detective Krador Arv - special detective Antrath Alv - special detective (maybe the same guy as above?) Phrakor Vuln - synthesist Sphabron Larv - reporter's helper Varkar Klav - Deputy Claims Agent Hasthor Flan - Councilman Frasthor Klav - a doctor who specializes in attacking the scientific basis of psychotesting Brogoth Zaln - confidential secretary to Thalvan Dras Golzon Doth - who knows... somebody that sent in a report Javrath Brend - financial attorney for Thalvan Dras Zortan Harn - some guy that passes an urgent-business motion to investigate BuPsychHyg Sothran Barth - lieutenant in Paratime Police Zostha Olv - Chief Interoffice Coordinator Nentrov Dard - a Psychist Zulthran Torv - mathematician in charge of the Computer Office Vlasthor Arph - Chief's Deputy assigned to Verkan Vall as adjutant Elbraz Vark - Political Liaison Assistant Dalgroth Sorn - Paratime Commissioner for Security Nanthav Skov - Councilman, Management supporter Asthar Varn - Speaker for the Council Ohh... that's just too many names. Next time I read this, I will have this list of characters for reference. And really, it's just terribly confusing when Piper continually refers to them by their full name. It would have been easier had he just given them more disparity in their names, and then go with a single name. And some technology you'll need to know about: timeline conveyers (for moving from one timeline to another, or transposition), boomerang-balls (automatic-return transposition spheres which operate as message-balls), narco-hypnosis (gaining access to somebody's memories, which does not permit them to lie to you)... Good luck with it.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Herman Gigglethorpe

    This is longer than the other Paratime short stories, and features an interdimensional slave trading ring that poses as wizards. At least there's a computer in this book (albeit one that uses dials) rather than just slide rules! :) I didn't think there was more than one First Level sector in the Paratime universe. I guess Verkan Vall just lived in a luckier dimension. Why do so many Paratime stories involve India, by the way? I wonder if Piper studied Indian history or something. . . This is longer than the other Paratime short stories, and features an interdimensional slave trading ring that poses as wizards. At least there's a computer in this book (albeit one that uses dials) rather than just slide rules! :) I didn't think there was more than one First Level sector in the Paratime universe. I guess Verkan Vall just lived in a luckier dimension. Why do so many Paratime stories involve India, by the way? I wonder if Piper studied Indian history or something. . .

  11. 4 out of 5

    Scott Harris

    Piper's time police story is an interesting creative exploration of the phenomenon of slavery across time lines and raised all sorts of questions about the propensity of people and cultures to take advantages of others. The very concept of policing multiple time lines and managing the intersecting issues is fascinating. There are some time line story issues that Piper hasn't fleshed out as much as later writers have but it is good just the same. Piper's time police story is an interesting creative exploration of the phenomenon of slavery across time lines and raised all sorts of questions about the propensity of people and cultures to take advantages of others. The very concept of policing multiple time lines and managing the intersecting issues is fascinating. There are some time line story issues that Piper hasn't fleshed out as much as later writers have but it is good just the same.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jim

    Product Description The book has no illustrations or index. Purchasers are entitled to a free trial membership in the General Books Club where they can select from more than a million books without charge. Subjects: Fiction / Science Fiction / Adventure; Fiction / Mystery

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jeffrey

    There is a strange sort of nostalgia in Piper's writing - a kind of a romantic rose tinted vision of a Victorian class based society that would appeal to a 1950s American reader. This book is better as a novelty than a scifi story. There is a strange sort of nostalgia in Piper's writing - a kind of a romantic rose tinted vision of a Victorian class based society that would appeal to a 1950s American reader. This book is better as a novelty than a scifi story.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Sean Brennan

    I just did not like this story, far too much theory and too little plot!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Lindsay

    Likeable main characters, although I did get some of the more minor characters confused at times.

  16. 5 out of 5

    glitrbug

    Kindle,.80,Amazon

  17. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    Just a *leetle* bit sexist...

  18. 4 out of 5

    Ed Glaser

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kit

  20. 4 out of 5

    Evitcelfer

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sokhom

  22. 5 out of 5

    Wendi Wanders

  23. 5 out of 5

    John Johnston

  24. 5 out of 5

    N. M. Robinette

  25. 5 out of 5

    Angela

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jason

  27. 4 out of 5

    Anita

  28. 5 out of 5

    Russ

  29. 5 out of 5

    Thom

  30. 4 out of 5

    Barb Carter

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