Sargasso of Space
- "The Sargasso of Space" is also the title of a 1931 sf novelette by Edmond Hamilton
|Sargasso of Space|
Dust-jacket from the first edition
|Cover artist||Ed Emshwiller|
|Genre||Science fiction novel|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover)|
|Followed by||Plague Ship|
Sargasso of Space is a science fiction novel by author Andrew North (pseudonym of Alice Mary Norton, also known as Andre Norton). It was published in 1955 by Gnome Press in an edition of 4,000 copies.
The novel starts with Dane Thorson getting assigned to work as a Cargo master apprentice on a Free Trader ship named Solar Queen. A Free Trader (not working for any intergalactic trading companies) means that the crew has to take on trading contracts with remote and recently discovered planets, which can be very dangerous and unpredictable.
The crew wages all their saving, including their own salaries, to win a bid for trading right with the planet Limbo. Upon their arrival, they learn that intelligent life on Limbo is very limited and trading is almost impossible, and they also discover that they are not the only humans on the planet.
The criminal group used sophisticated machinery to crash and loot various ships on the planet. Dane and his friends are able to contact the police and shut down the system the criminals used.
At the end, Limbo is handed over to the police and Solar Queen gets a much better trading contract.
Galaxy reviewer Floyd C. Gale praised the novel as "unpretentious space opera. . . . good adventure reading for a couple of carefree hours." Anthony Boucher was less impressed, finding Sargasso "a competent routine space opera obviously aimed at the audience whose concept of s.f. is derived from T.V. serials."