Losing a lot of legends these days, a lot of seminal influences on my young mind. For me, Harry Harrison will always be associated with a childhood spent at the library, picking up books based solely on their covers and perceived “value” (I was a firm believer in omnibuses and anthologies, because they would delay my need to return to the library just a few more days). This cover, and the fact it contained three novels, was enough to get me to check it out and take it home.
A few years later, when I joined the Science Fiction Book Club, this would be one of my enrollment selections. That cover sticks with you in its not so great way.
So I read this book, the rest of the Stainless Steel Rat books, Make Room, Make Room, The Initial Deathworld novels, Bill, The Galactic Hero (and it’s sequels from the late 80s/early 90s), and the To The Stars series. I didn’t dabble in Harrison, but devoured his work by the dozens.
I still have The Adventures Of The Stainless Steel Rat, though the rest of my collection of second-hand paperbacks and broken-spined hardcovers have fallen by the wayside in one move or another. But Harrison never left me, and his passing won’t change that either.
Rest In Peace Harry, and thanks for the memories.