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The Wizards of Odd: Comic Tales of Fantasy…
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The Wizards of Odd: Comic Tales of Fantasy (1996)

by Peter Haining (Editor)

Other authors: Douglas Adams (Contributor), Brian W. Aldiss (Contributor), F. Anstey (Contributor), Isaac Asimov (Contributor), Robert Bloch (Contributor)19 more, Ray Bradbury (Contributor), Reginald Bretnor (Contributor), Fredric Brown (Contributor), James Branch Cabell (Contributor), Arthur C. Clarke (Contributor), John Collier (Contributor), Avram Davidson (Contributor), Philip K. Dick (Contributor), Stephen R. Donaldson (Contributor), Lord Dunsany (Contributor), Henry Kuttner (Contributor), Ursula K. Le Guin (Contributor), Fritz Leiber (Contributor), C. S. Lewis (Contributor), Larry Niven (Contributor), Terry Pratchett (Contributor), Eric Frank Russell (Contributor), Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (Contributor), H. G. Wells (Contributor)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Comic Tales of Fantasy (1)

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Showing 4 of 4
Comic tales of fantasy
  stevholt | Nov 19, 2017 |
How can you go wrong with a collection of 25 stories that includes heavyweights such as Ray Bradbury, Arthur C. Clarke, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., Douglas Adams, Ursula K. Le Guin, Terry Pratchett, C.S. Lewis, Fritz Leiber, Phil K. Dick, Brian W. Aldiss, Isaac Asimov, Larry Niven, and more?

To be honest, I only enjoyed about half of them. My favorites include:

"The Twonky" by Henry Kuttner - When Kerry Westerfield's brand new cabinet radio begins walking around the house dictating Kerry's every move, he calls in psychiatrist pal Mike Fitzgerald, but this radio is constructed like no other... and it defends itself against anyone who might pose a threat—with fatal results.

"A Great Deal of Power" by Eric Frank Russell - When military scientists create an android assassin to kill top officials and scientists in the enemy's ranks, they program its mind with a pure hatred of power... but what will the android do when the enemy is eliminated and those giving the orders become the powerful?

"Doodad" by Ray Bradbury - Running from the mob, Gyp Crowell finds himself in a shop called Thingamabobs, Doodads, Whatchamacallits, Hinkies, Formodaldafrays, Hootenannies, Gadgets, and Doohingies. While there, Gyp finds a device that might help him out of his predicament... in ways he didn't expect.

“A Good Knight’s Work” by Robert Bloch – Sir Pallagyn of the Black Keep is hurled forward in time by the legendary Merlin to find the Cappadocian Tabouret in a “house of the past.” First, however, he decides to help a new found friend defeat the local mob boss…

"Not By Its Cover" by Phil K. Dick - When a special, translated edition of an ancient Latin book is published with animal hide cover, it is quickly discovered that certain passages in the book have been translated differently that in the paperback version, which leads to an astonishing conclusion about the animal hide covers...

"The Rules of Names" by Ursula K. Le Guin - Mr. Underhill lives a reclusive life in the village, practicing his wizardry with often questionable results... until a pirate named Blackbeard arrives with certain suspicions and accusations against Underhill. In response, the old bumbling sorcerer shows his true colors...

"Mythological Beast" by Stephen Donaldson - Norman is a librarian in an age of ignorance when so many among the population can barely read. Norman has a problem when he notices a horn growing in the middle of his forehead. Shortly after, his entire body begins to change into the shape of a creature than cannot be allowed to exist in a controlled society...

"The Adventure of the Snowing Globe" by F. Antsey - A man stops into a toy shoppe to purchase a present and is drawn to a snow globe containing a miniature castle. After shaking the globe, the man is transported to the real castle, meets a real princess being held prisoner by her cruel, oppressive uncle, and finds himself face to face with a real dragon...

"Zaphod Plays It Safe" by Douglas Adams - Zaphod Beeblebrox is hired by the Safety and Reassurance Administration to retrieve items of secretive nature from a crashed ship in the depths of an alien ocean. Despite Zaphod's increasing misgivings, the authorities assure him that "it's all perfectly safe"...

"The Odd Old Bird" by Avram Davidson - When the frivolous Prince Vlox indicates to two royal scientists that his property has been frequently visited by a rare bird, the Emperor's wizard Eszterhazy requests that the prince capture the bird and have it sent to him. However, there is some confusion on the part of the temporary help when the bird is delivered around the same time as the cook was expecting a chicken...

"The Gnurrs Come from the Voodwork Out" by Reginald Bretnor - Quack inventor Papa Schimmelhorn arrives at the local Secret Weapons Bureau determined to demonstrate how his new invention, which resembles a bassoon, will win the war... in the most unimaginable way!

"Captain Wyxtpthll's Flying Saucer" by Arthur C. Clarke - A pair of hapless aliens land in England on a mission to find and retrieve an intelligent human specimen only to end up incarcerated by the local police as mental patients... until the town drunk helps them escape!

"There's A Wolf in My Time Machine" by Larry Niven - A time traveller finds himself in a parallel dimension where mankind evolved from wolves instead of apes.

"2BRO2B" by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. - In order for newborns to be permitted to live in a dystopian future under strict population control, someone must volunteer to die. What happens when a married couple is expecting triplets, but could locate only one volunteer? ( )
  pgiunta | Oct 29, 2017 |
I enjoyed this collection of humorous fantasy stories. Two of my favorites were "Doodad" by Ray Bradbury about a man who learns too late not to underestimate seemingly useless items and "The Rule of Names" by Ursula K. Le Guin about a mysterious wizard and a knight. ( )
  krin5292 | Apr 13, 2012 |
A collection of short stories that someone must have thought were funny. But I didn't ( )
  jalanb | Jun 1, 2007 |
Showing 4 of 4
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» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Haining, PeterEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Adams, DouglasContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Aldiss, Brian W.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Anstey, F.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Asimov, IsaacContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bloch, RobertContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bradbury, RayContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bretnor, ReginaldContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brown, FredricContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Cabell, James BranchContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Clarke, Arthur C.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Collier, JohnContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Davidson, AvramContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dick, Philip K.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Donaldson, Stephen R.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dunsany, LordContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kuttner, HenryContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Le Guin, Ursula K.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Leiber, FritzContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lewis, C. S.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Niven, LarryContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Pratchett, TerryContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Russell, Eric FrankContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Vonnegut Jr., KurtContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wells, H. G.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kirby, JoshCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Sport that wrinkled Care derides,
And Laughter holding both his sides.
Come, and trip it as ye go
On the light fantastic toe ...

         John Milton
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As a child I once lay awake for hours half-hoping to see a Dufflepud. (Introduction)
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This first-time collection showcases the Wizards of Odd--the masters of science fiction and fantasy at their quirky, comical best. Included are: a rare short story set in the world of Hitchhiker's Guide by Douglas Adams, a never-before-anthologized work by Terry Pratchett, unexpected offerings from such luminaries as Arthur C. Clarke, Ray Bradbury, Kurt Vonnigut, Jr. and Ursula K. LeGuin, and much, much more.… (more)

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