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Storm Over Warlock

by Andre Norton

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Forerunner (1)

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5441044,769 (3.46)31
Classic Literature. Fiction. Science Fiction. HTML:

Earth's residents are on the brink of colonizing another planet, but the advance team that has been sent to Warlock to ready the terrain for human habitation has been attacked by a race of bloodthirsty space creatures. Will the sole survivor of the raid be able to fight back and avert a full-scale intergalactic war?

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Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
An ok little sci-fi story.   Andre was the earliest of women sci-fi writers, even before Ursula K Le Guin, and this book certainly feels quite old school in that it has quite a few elements that you're more likely to find in pure fantasy books these days.

Not really the kind of thing i would think the youth would be into these days, but for us old school types who enjoy going back in time and don't care if people mix witches, warlocks and dream spells in with their lasers, spaceships and food pills it's quite an enjoyable little read and a wonderful piece of sci-fi history.

Essentially, a scout team are on a new planet, named 'Warlock', setting things up when aliens arrive and destroy them all, except the youngest and newest member of the team and two wolverines.   Then it becomes a case of surviving on an alien planet while being hunted by the aliens.   And so the story begins as more things are discovered about the planet and its native flora and fauna along the way.

Available as a single book or in the collection, 'Visions of Distant Shores'. ( )
  5t4n5 | Aug 9, 2023 |
Norton, Andre. Storm over Warlock. Forerunner No. 1. Ace, 1960.
Andre Norton wrote novels in the Forerunner universe from time to time over twenty-five years. Storm over Warlock is the first. A Terran survey camp on the planet Warlock is attacked by off-planet aliens. Two survivors, Shann, a menial laborer, and his officer, escape into the surrounding wilderness. What follows is an island-castaway survival story. The wildlife in the jungle and in the sea is dangerous. But Shann, aided by two trained wolverines (no kidding), is managing until his officer begins acting strangely, hijacks their makeshift boat, and leaves Shann and his animals behind. Things get more difficult when sentient mind-controlling aliens show up. All in all, this is classic adventure space opera fantasy. It is certainly the first story I have read with trained wolverines. Three stars with a bonus star for the wolverines. ( )
  Tom-e | Mar 1, 2021 |
Originally posted at FanLit:

Shan Lantee considers himself very lucky to be part of the Terran survey team on the planet Warlock. It??s too bad that nobody pays any attention to him. Heƒ??s the youngest and most inexperienced member of the team, so he has to do all the bad jobs that nobody else wants to do, like chasing and rounding up the wolverine scouts every time they escape.

Thatƒ??s what he was doing when the alien spaceship swooped down and destroyed everyone else in the camp and thatƒ??s why Shan is the only human left on a hostile planet. Heƒ??s got no weapons and no supplies, just the two wolverines who he hopes to befriend. Theyƒ??re not alone for long, though, because a man that Shan idolizes shows up to find out what happened on Warlock, and the insectoid alien Throgs arrive to claim the planet for their own. Thus begins a dangerous adventure that will require Shan to learn a lot about Warlock and a lot about himself, too.

Storm Over Warlock, first published by Ace in 1960, is an exciting science fiction story that will appeal to both teens and adults. Itƒ??s comparable to the ƒ??juvenilesƒ? that Robert A. Heinlein was writing back then. Andre Nortonƒ??s setting is exotic and Shan Lantee, a youth whoƒ??s anxious to prove himself, is easy to sympathize with, as are most of Andre Nortonƒ??s protagonists. The Throgs and Warlockƒ??s native species, the Wyverns, though only shallowly developed in this novel, feel truly alien. The two wolverines are a unique and adorable addition ƒ?? theyƒ??re my favorite part of this book.

Storm Over Warlock is in the public domain and can be purchased for free in Kindle format at Amazon. I listened to the 7-hour audio version originally produced by Jimcin Recordings in 2009 and recently distributed in CD format by Brilliance Audio (but itƒ??s cheaper for members at Audible). Jim Roberts gives a slightly wooden performance, but I like his ƒ??old SFƒ? voice. You can also find a free volunteer-read audio version at Librivox. I havenƒ??t listened to it, but if you do, please let us know how you like it.

Storm Over Warlock is the first in Andre Nortonƒ??s FORERUNNER series and it holds up pretty well in 2013. I will be happy to try the next novel, Ordeal in Otherwhere. ( )
  Kat_Hooper | Apr 6, 2014 |
Warning: this is not a proper review. This post is basically my reward for listening to this book all the way through. There are spoilers, but not huge ones.

Storm Over Warlock is the first book by Andre Norton that I've read. I don't think it will be the last either, but that's more because I'm interested in experiencing other things she wrote, than because I enjoyed Storm Over Warlock. I didn't hate it, it didn't annoy me, but — and I think part of this is definitely due to consuming it in audiobook form — I just found it boring. And dated.

The Throg task force struck the Terran survey camp a few minutes after dawn, without warning, and with a deadly precision which argued that the aliens had fully reconnoitered and prepared that attack. Eye-searing lances of energy lashed back and forth across the base with methodical accuracy. And a single cowering witness, flattened on a ledge in the heights above, knew that when the last of those yellow-red bolts fell, nothing human would be left alive down there. And so Shann Lantee, most menial of the Terrans attached to the camp on the planet Warlock, was left alone and weaponless in the strange, hostile world, the human prey of the aliens from space and the aliens on the ground alike.

I listened to it on my drive to and from work (so in chunks of no more than twenty-five minutes at a time) and my mind kept wandering. I'd try to pay attention when I realised I was doing it, but I definitely missed chunks. There were several "wait, how did they get over there?" moments. There were also quite a few interesting issues raised that I wished were explored more deeply (yes, yes, I know I've admitted to zoning out, but it wasn't for that long at a stretch.

I found it interesting that although the main character and the other human came from a fairly patriarchal society, the Warlockian aliens they encounter were aggressively matriarchal, to the point of males belonging to the females and not being able to think for themselves. I liked that Norton included that, although it's definitely one of the aspects I would've liked to see explored in more detail.

There was also some promising things happening with mind control and psychic communication. It made the story a bit more trippy, but that actually worked with the zoning out (confusion for all!). At one point, near the start, Shann makes a reference to having seen "mind-controlled" people before coming to Warlock and I kind of want to know more about that. On the other hand, it's entirely possible more was divulged while I was thinking about what to have for lunch the next day.

I strongly suspect that I would have absorbed more of this book if I'd read it with my eyes rather than my ears. I probably still wouldn't have found it particularly exciting (despite the interplanetary war...) but at least I would have taken it in more coherently. For audiobooks to work for me, I need them to keep me interested the entire time. I've mostly had good luck with that in the past, but not with Storm Over Warlock, unfortunately.

You can read more of my (proper) reviews on my blog. ( )
  Tsana | Oct 8, 2013 |
Lantee, the junior member of an advance Survey team from Earth preparing a planet (Warlock) for human settlement, is the lone survivor of an attack by the vicious alien Throgs. He faces difficult physical challenges to survive in the wild with two intelligent wolverines, and joins up with a senior Survey officer to attack the Throgs. But what about the strange dreams and the possibility of an indigenous alien race?

Great descriptions of an alien planet. Terse, evocative writing style. It is a book for juveniles; but I first read this many years ago as a teenager and it is great to re-read it. My three star rating includes a bump up for the nostalgia factor, but I would hesitate to recommend it to others. ( )
  mathrocks | Sep 21, 2011 |
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» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Norton, Andreprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
D'Achille, GinoCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Emshwiller, EdCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Knecht, FredIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nelson, MarkNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vaughan, GabrielNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Classic Literature. Fiction. Science Fiction. HTML:

Earth's residents are on the brink of colonizing another planet, but the advance team that has been sent to Warlock to ready the terrain for human habitation has been attacked by a race of bloodthirsty space creatures. Will the sole survivor of the raid be able to fight back and avert a full-scale intergalactic war?


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