History Creator / AlanDeanFoster

7th Oct '17 10:38:23 AM nombretomado
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* HumansAreCthulhu: The short story "With Friends Like These..." takes a look at the theme from another angle. Ages ago, the old galactic civilization deemed humanity too dangerous and [[TheWallAroundTheWorld sealed off Earth]] until it became a myth, but now aliens needs Mankind's skill at battle against another alien race. So a few representatives go to Earth, see a quiet pastoral culture relaxing in a hammock, and ask the "mythical creatures" to help. Cue the [[FreakOut little shock]] when aliens see [[spoiler:that humans are so calm because their hammock is [[SufficientlyAdvancedAlien too high]] on [[AbusingTheKardashevScaleForFunAndProfit The Kardashev Scale]] to worry. Not only have humans evolved psionic powers and are in telepathic contact with various other mammalian species (which presumably they [[UpliftedAnimal Uplifted]]), not only is the whole planet filled with machinery and computers for miles below the surface, but ''the entire freaking planet Earth (with moon) breaks orbit to follow the aliens' starship''!]].

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* HumansAreCthulhu: The short story "With Friends Like These..." takes a look at the theme from another angle. Ages ago, the old galactic civilization deemed humanity too dangerous and [[TheWallAroundTheWorld sealed off Earth]] until it became a myth, but now aliens needs Mankind's skill at battle against another alien race. So a few representatives go to Earth, see a quiet pastoral culture relaxing in a hammock, and ask the "mythical creatures" to help. Cue the [[FreakOut little shock]] when aliens see [[spoiler:that humans are so calm because their hammock is [[SufficientlyAdvancedAlien too high]] on [[AbusingTheKardashevScaleForFunAndProfit [[JustForFun/AbusingTheKardashevScaleForFunAndProfit The Kardashev Scale]] to worry. Not only have humans evolved psionic powers and are in telepathic contact with various other mammalian species (which presumably they [[UpliftedAnimal Uplifted]]), not only is the whole planet filled with machinery and computers for miles below the surface, but ''the entire freaking planet Earth (with moon) breaks orbit to follow the aliens' starship''!]].
18th Jul '17 7:21:03 PM Sharlee
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* DirectLineToTheAuthor: "Some Notes Concerning A Green Box" started out as a gag letter Foster sent to an Arkham House publisher, ostensibly seeking advice on how to deal with some CosmicHorror-related documents that'd come into his possession by chance. The recipient took it for a submission, and following revisions it became Foster's first published work.
26th Apr '17 8:24:48 PM PaulA
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* ''Literature/JourneysOfTheCatechist'' trilogy



* BoringReturnJourney: In the ''Journeys of the Catechist'' series, the main character accepts the dying wish of a man and goes to save that man's fiancée from being held by the evil overlord of a distant kingdom. The trilogy is three books of the most creative weird obstacles you could ask for, with only about a quarter of the third book being spent in the overlord's kingdom. Then the main character takes the girl back to her kingdom from halfway through the second book, then [[spoiler:back to the overlord because she'd fallen for him]], then he goes all the way back to his own village. All without a description of the events.



* CrazyPrepared: Etjole Ehomba, central character of ''Journeys of the Catechist'', carries any number of magical and alchemical gifts in his backpack. Most of these are intended for use in other applications, but prove effective in whatever crazy-ass situation he's currently facing as well. In addition, his "sky-metal sword" usually has a hidden ability perfect for whatever foe he's fighting.



* GodlySidestep: Knucker the Knower, who knows everything when he's drunk, tells Etjole Ehomba the meaning of life in ''Into the Thinking Kingdoms''. Ehomba is pleased with the answer, but since Knucker whispered the answer, the reader never finds out.



* HumansAreCthulhu:
** The short story "With Friends Like These..." takes a look at the theme from another angle. Ages ago, the old galactic civilization deemed humanity too dangerous and [[TheWallAroundTheWorld sealed off Earth]] until it became a myth, but now aliens needs Mankind's skill at battle against another alien race. So a few representatives go to Earth, see a quiet pastoral culture relaxing in a hammock, and ask the "mythical creatures" to help. Cue the [[FreakOut little shock]] when aliens see [[spoiler:that humans are so calm because their hammock is [[SufficientlyAdvancedAlien too high]] on [[AbusingTheKardashevScaleForFunAndProfit The Kardashev Scale]] to worry. Not only have humans evolved psionic powers and are in telepathic contact with various other mammalian species (which presumably they [[UpliftedAnimal Uplifted]]), not only is the whole planet filled with machinery and computers for miles below the surface, but ''the entire freaking planet Earth (with moon) breaks orbit to follow the aliens' starship''!]].
** A story-within-a-story seen in ''Carnivores of Light and Darkness'' tells of two warring anthills contacting a man, probably to get him to help destroy the other mound. One group of ants sees this as a divine miracle.

to:

* HumansAreCthulhu:
**
HumansAreCthulhu: The short story "With Friends Like These..." takes a look at the theme from another angle. Ages ago, the old galactic civilization deemed humanity too dangerous and [[TheWallAroundTheWorld sealed off Earth]] until it became a myth, but now aliens needs Mankind's skill at battle against another alien race. So a few representatives go to Earth, see a quiet pastoral culture relaxing in a hammock, and ask the "mythical creatures" to help. Cue the [[FreakOut little shock]] when aliens see [[spoiler:that humans are so calm because their hammock is [[SufficientlyAdvancedAlien too high]] on [[AbusingTheKardashevScaleForFunAndProfit The Kardashev Scale]] to worry. Not only have humans evolved psionic powers and are in telepathic contact with various other mammalian species (which presumably they [[UpliftedAnimal Uplifted]]), not only is the whole planet filled with machinery and computers for miles below the surface, but ''the entire freaking planet Earth (with moon) breaks orbit to follow the aliens' starship''!]].
** A story-within-a-story seen in ''Carnivores of Light and Darkness'' tells of two warring anthills contacting a man, probably to get him to help destroy the other mound. One group of ants sees this as a divine miracle.
starship''!]].



* IGaveMyWord: In ''Journeys of the Catechist'', the main character gets stuck with a LastRequest from a dying soldier to save a kidnapped princess from the evil necromancer who'd kidnapped her. After working his way through three books worth of [[WackyWaysideTribe crazy adventures]] to find her and defeat the necromancer, he discovers that in the meantime she's fallen in love with her captor. Being a man of his word, he insists on taking her back to her family, but promises that he'll grant her one request. So she asks to go back to the necromancer (which involves more crazy adventures, but all off screen this time). The companions he picked up along the way all express their opinions that he's fallen well into LawfulStupid territory.



* TheMirrorShowsYourTrueSelf: ''Journeys of the Catechist'' features the main character, Ehomba, using a mirror to scare away some creatures that had been bombarding the party with giant pine cones. Afterward, each character looks into the mirror in turn. The normally jovial and exuberant Simna appears much more somber and depressed, the enormous cat Ahlitah appears as the height of feline majesty, and the recovering drunkard Knucker sees himself as he is when drinking. When Ehomba first looks into the mirror, the other three are momentarily blinded by the sun's reflection when they try to look. Looking again, the mirror is showing Ehomba exactly as he is. [[spoiler:Only Ahlitah notices that the sun was in front of Ehomba, not behind him, and so couldn't have been the source of the light that the others saw in the mirror.]]



* NighInvulnerability: In ''Journeys of the Catechist'', the eromakasi (eaters of light) can only be killed by eromakadi, because they are basically mist, and need to be sucked in. The most powerful mage in the world has two of them as bodyguards.



* ObfuscatingStupidity: In ''The Journey of the Catechist'', this turns out to be the case with [[spoiler:Hunkapa Aub]].
* PantheraAwesome:
** In ''Kingdoms of Light'' a spell transforms a bird, a terrier, a snake and three cats into humans to return color to the drab Kingdom of Gowlands after it was taken over by an evil warlock and his goblin hordes. During the FinalBattle all the animals transform into larger wild animal counterparts of their respective species. The bird turns into a firebird, the terrier into a large wolfdog, the snake into a reticulated python, and the three cats into a lion, a panther, and a leopard respectively.
** The ''Journeys of the Catechist'' series has Ahlitah, a hybrid of lion and cheetah, who possesses his father's strength (the lion), and his mother's speed. He basically serves as TheSnarkKnight throughout the series, and TheBigGuy for the first book.

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* ObfuscatingStupidity: In ''The Journey of the Catechist'', this turns out to be the case with [[spoiler:Hunkapa Aub]].
* PantheraAwesome:
**
PantheraAwesome: In ''Kingdoms of Light'' a spell transforms a bird, a terrier, a snake and three cats into humans to return color to the drab Kingdom of Gowlands after it was taken over by an evil warlock and his goblin hordes. During the FinalBattle all the animals transform into larger wild animal counterparts of their respective species. The bird turns into a firebird, the terrier into a large wolfdog, the snake into a reticulated python, and the three cats into a lion, a panther, and a leopard respectively.
** The ''Journeys of the Catechist'' series has Ahlitah, a hybrid of lion and cheetah, who possesses his father's strength (the lion), and his mother's speed. He basically serves as TheSnarkKnight throughout the series, and TheBigGuy for the first book.
respectively.



* UnwantedRescue: Played with in the ''Journey of the Catechist'' trilogy. Etjole Ehomba promises a dying man that he will rescue the beautiful Visioness Themaril, who has been kidnapped by the sorcerer/warlord Hymneth the Possessed, and return her to her home city. After many adventures, he and his companions storm Hymneth's fortress to discover that the Visoness has decided to stay, believing that her influence can make him less evil. Etjole proceeds to bring her home by force -- and then, having fulfilled his promise, immediately turns around and takes her right back to Hymneth.



* WalkingWasteland: ''Journeys of the Catechist'' briefly featured the living essence of Corruption. One character hits Corruption in the neck with his sword, which promptly rusts and rots away in seconds. A similar being, called the Drounge, was encountered in the third book. Descriptions of its travels before encountering the heroes tell of mysterious plagues, withered crops, and epidemics. Even touching the thing rots away all the flesh on one character's hand.
26th Apr '17 7:46:26 PM PaulA
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* ''Literature/TheDamned''



* AliensInCardiff: The first scouting sortie of the alien collective in ''A Call to Arms'' encounters as its first human contact a musician in a fishing boat off the coast of Belize.
* TheAlliance: The Weave in ''The Damned'' trilogy.



* DeathWorld: Earth is considered a Death World in ''The Damned'', by a coalition of alien races whose worlds all have low gravity, low tectonics, practically no axial tilt (preventing violent weather) and few true predators. The average unskilled couch-potato human is more than a match for their trained soldiers. Trained Earth military personnel, especially special-operations types, are essentially incarnate demigods of death by alien standards.



* GoneHorriblyRight: In ''The Damned'', humans are the warrior species to an absurd extent, well above anything else. Additionally, they are actively immune to MindControl -- any telepath trying to contact them feels great pain, trying to control humans is nearly fatal. In the second book of the trilogy, this leads to a strategy of genetically engineering a subspecies of human with slight alterations to make them mind-controllable, to pass them off as another species and to be even better than the other humans. The new creatures are raised and trained among aliens, and it all works really, really well until they find out who they really are and switch sides. Now certain humans are even more deadly. And while somewhat susceptible to mind control, they are adept at it themselves.



* HumanityIsInsane: ''The Damned''. Humans evolved on a planet that shouldn't have been able to support life, in a way that shouldn't have produced a sentient species, and while as individuals we're usually decent, we display disturbing tendencies in our speech patterns and our art that are magnified when we're in large groups. We're also immune to MindReading, with spectacular results any time it's tried.
* HumanityIsSuperior: Humans in ''The Damned Trilogy'' are faster, stronger, tougher, and fiercer than every other sentient species, bar none. They're also the only species with the ability to resist the PsychicPowers of the Amplitur, who have brainwashed entire species into being happy slaves. So, the discovery of humanity by the Weave of free species at the beginning of the first book marks a critical turning point in their war to remain free. Unfortunately, humans are feared by the other sympathetic alien species precisely for those qualities and the uncomfortable question comes up that if they win the war, what will happen to human/alien relations then? Technically there are faster, stronger and tougher races than humans but Humans are a JackOfAllStats species, faster than the strongest species, stronger than the fastest but fiercer than all.



** The science fiction trilogy ''The Damned'' has two vast coalitions of aliens at war with each other for millenia across the Milky Way. One faction (the good-guy underdogs) discovers Earth and finds that compared to every other known intelligent species modern-day humans are unbelievably fast and strong and savage, both physically and psychologically (none of the other species is particularly good at the concept of "waging war"). They ultimately decide they have no choice but to recruit humanity to their cause anyway, knowing that once the war is won they'll have a very dangerous situation on their hands trying to figure out how to live safely with their allies.



* HumansAreFlawed: In ''The Damned'' trilogy humanity is discovered by an alliance of super-civilized alien species who are being forced to fight a war against their will. Compared to them we are portrayed as barely civilized, warlike, violence-crazed and brutish, and indeed our love for inflicting death and destruction makes us the perfect soldiers. However we're also capable of great things, and many humans try to control their instincts and strive for more than just being the alliance's grunts.
* HumansAreSpecial:
** In ''Design for Great-Day'', human loquaciousness is described as being their special talent. Other races can speak conversationally and use metaphors and everything else we associate with speech, but humans in particular are known for their ability to "talk the legs off an alligator and cast serious doubts on its parentage in the process". The implication is that while other races ''can'' use speech this way (it is, after all, an alien saying this of humans), humans are inherently better at it.
** ''The Damned'' portrays a galaxy full of pacifist civilizations that evolved on tame worlds. Few of these species can tolerate even mild violence without going catatonic from the experience. These alien races are slowly losing a galactic war to a race of cephalopods whose mastery of genetic engineering and mind control allows them to make slightly better soldiers than the free races. An alien expedition looking for allies to fight the cephalopods discover Earth, and is immediately struck by the hostility of the environment. By Damned universe standards, Earth is a DeathWorld with impossibly harsh climates, high tectonic activity, high risk of meteor showers and geography that encourages political conflict. As a result, humans are far stronger, faster and more aggressive than any sentient species the aliens have ever encountered. Humans even seem to enjoy violence. The aliens are both horrified and thrilled. Naturally, they recruit us to fight our wars for them as soon as possible. The cephalopods soon discover that attempting mind control on humans does nothing to humans, and drives the aliens trying it catatonic. Later, they attempt to engineer a race of humans that are good at fighting but vulnerable to control. Unfortunately (for them) it backfires horribly when [[spoiler:these humans develop strong psychic powers and turn on them. Realizing that they are eventually going to lose the war, the squids enact a BatmanGambit by unconditionally surrendering to the galactic alliance that includes the humans, having calculated that without the war to occupy the humans, restless mankind will soon become a problem for its allies. The other races armed humans with advanced weaponry and medical technology. They won't stand a chance if mankind decides to conquer ''them''.]]
* HumansAreTheRealMonsters: In ''The Damned'', humans appeared in a world where all life would be impossible by the standards of most aliens, and we went through some unpleasant evolutionary contortions to survive, but if we last much longer without outside interference, we'll achieve peace. Unfortunately, outside interference is coming -- and by book 3, after a thousand years as CannonFodder in an interstellar war, the humans are less "human" psychologically than the aliens are.
* HumansAreWarriors:
** ''The Damned'' trilogy has a coalition of pacifistic aliens who have been fighting a centuries-long losing battle against a race of fanatical, mindwashing conquerors moved by a mysterious spiritual/religious principle. The problem is that every race is so civilized, few can even conceive of hurting another sentient, and even those who aren't quite that civilized and try to do whatever fighting is necessary aren't really any good at it. Then the coalition finds humans, a race ripe with contradictions but whose fighting abilities are beyond anything anyone, friend or enemy, has ever seen. [[spoiler:And immune to the Amplitur mindwashing.]] In fact, humans can be so unpredictably and barbarically violent that the coalition would prefer to not use humanity at all, and only relents because if the enemy gets to them first the war is essentially over. A ''lot'' of [[CurbStompBattle curb-stomping]] ensues.
** "With Friends Like These..." is told from the alien point of view. Humanity was [[SealedEvilInACan sealed under a forcefield]] a long time ago because we scared them ''that badly''. When they release the humans in exchange for helping them against a bigger menace, one of the aliens has the sense to worry "What happens when we run out of enemies?".

to:

* HumansAreFlawed: In ''The Damned'' trilogy humanity is discovered by an alliance of super-civilized alien species who are being forced to fight a war against their will. Compared to them we are portrayed as barely civilized, warlike, violence-crazed and brutish, and indeed our love for inflicting death and destruction makes us the perfect soldiers. However we're also capable of great things, and many humans try to control their instincts and strive for more than just being the alliance's grunts.
* HumansAreSpecial:
**
HumansAreSpecial: In ''Design for Great-Day'', human loquaciousness is described as being their special talent. Other races can speak conversationally and use metaphors and everything else we associate with speech, but humans in particular are known for their ability to "talk the legs off an alligator and cast serious doubts on its parentage in the process". The implication is that while other races ''can'' use speech this way (it is, after all, an alien saying this of humans), humans are inherently better at it.
** ''The Damned'' portrays a galaxy full of pacifist civilizations that evolved on tame worlds. Few of these species can tolerate even mild violence without going catatonic from the experience. These alien races are slowly losing a galactic war to a race of cephalopods whose mastery of genetic engineering and mind control allows them to make slightly better soldiers than the free races. An alien expedition looking for allies to fight the cephalopods discover Earth, and is immediately struck by the hostility of the environment. By Damned universe standards, Earth is a DeathWorld with impossibly harsh climates, high tectonic activity, high risk of meteor showers and geography that encourages political conflict. As a result, humans are far stronger, faster and more aggressive than any sentient species the aliens have ever encountered. Humans even seem to enjoy violence. The aliens are both horrified and thrilled. Naturally, they recruit us to fight our wars for them as soon as possible. The cephalopods soon discover that attempting mind control on humans does nothing to humans, and drives the aliens trying it catatonic. Later, they attempt to engineer a race of humans that are good at fighting but vulnerable to control. Unfortunately (for them) it backfires horribly when [[spoiler:these humans develop strong psychic powers and turn on them. Realizing that they are eventually going to lose the war, the squids enact a BatmanGambit by unconditionally surrendering to the galactic alliance that includes the humans, having calculated that without the war to occupy the humans, restless mankind will soon become a problem for its allies. The other races armed humans with advanced weaponry and medical technology. They won't stand a chance if mankind decides to conquer ''them''.]]
* HumansAreTheRealMonsters: In ''The Damned'', humans appeared in a world where all life would be impossible by the standards of most aliens, and we went through some unpleasant evolutionary contortions to survive, but if we last much longer without outside interference, we'll achieve peace. Unfortunately, outside interference is coming -- and by book 3, after a thousand years as CannonFodder in an interstellar war, the humans are less "human" psychologically than the aliens are.
* HumansAreWarriors:
** ''The Damned'' trilogy has a coalition of pacifistic aliens who have been fighting a centuries-long losing battle against a race of fanatical, mindwashing conquerors moved by a mysterious spiritual/religious principle. The problem is that every race is so civilized, few can even conceive of hurting another sentient, and even those who aren't quite that civilized and try to do whatever fighting is necessary aren't really any good at it. Then the coalition finds humans, a race ripe with contradictions but whose fighting abilities are beyond anything anyone, friend or enemy, has ever seen. [[spoiler:And immune to the Amplitur mindwashing.]] In fact, humans can be so unpredictably and barbarically violent that the coalition would prefer to not use humanity at all, and only relents because if the enemy gets to them first the war is essentially over. A ''lot'' of [[CurbStompBattle curb-stomping]] ensues.
**
HumansAreWarriors: "With Friends Like These..." is told from the alien point of view. Humanity was [[SealedEvilInACan sealed under a forcefield]] a long time ago because we scared them ''that badly''. When they release the humans in exchange for helping them against a bigger menace, one of the aliens has the sense to worry "What happens when we run out of enemies?".



* ObfuscatingStupidity:
** In ''The Damned Trilogy'', [[spoiler:the Lepar are an entire species doing this]].
** In ''The Journey of the Catechist'', this turns out to be the case with [[spoiler:Hunkapa Aub]].

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* ObfuscatingStupidity:
** In ''The Damned Trilogy'', [[spoiler:the Lepar are an entire species doing this]].
**
ObfuscatingStupidity: In ''The Journey of the Catechist'', this turns out to be the case with [[spoiler:Hunkapa Aub]].



* PlanetOfHats:
** In ''Design for Great-Day'', a spiderlike species is mentioned whose hat is... hats. [[NiceHat Nice ones]].
** In ''The Damned'', all of humanity wears the BloodKnight hat once an interstellar war lands in our laps. And it's a good thing, too, because every other species in these novels either wear the Programmed For Pacifism hat or the Reluctant Clumsy Warrior hat, and being good at killing things is our only hope to survive in the face of technological superiority. Well... that and being immune to telepathy. Humans are the only species that doesn't have a single, unified culture, because we're the only ones who're such bastards that we can't even get along with members of our own species.

to:

* PlanetOfHats:
**
PlanetOfHats: In ''Design for Great-Day'', a spiderlike species is mentioned whose hat is... hats. [[NiceHat Nice ones]].
** In ''The Damned'', all of humanity wears the BloodKnight hat once an interstellar war lands in our laps. And it's a good thing, too, because every other species in these novels either wear the Programmed For Pacifism hat or the Reluctant Clumsy Warrior hat, and being good at killing things is our only hope to survive in the face of technological superiority. Well... that and being immune to telepathy. Humans are the only species that doesn't have a single, unified culture, because we're the only ones who're such bastards that we can't even get along with members of our own species.
ones]].



* ProudWarriorRaceGuy: In ''The Damned'', humanity is the proud warrior race. By virtue of being the only species in the galaxy that has evolved to be able to stomach fighting and killing other sentient beings, without fainting out of horror or revulsion, humanity is freakishly strong (capable of breaking other species' bones just by swatting their hands away), enormously resilient and completely batshit crazy. So much so, in fact, that the galactic community refuses to grant humanity citizenship for centuries after co-opting them to fight in a war against the ScaryDogmaticAliens.
* PsychicBlockDefense: In ''The Damned'' trilogy, not only are humans immune to the psychic powers of the Amplitur, but applying telepathy to humans turns out to be very painful and near-fatal. [[spoiler:Later we find that Lepar are immune too, but they don't hurt Amplitur.]]
* PsychicPowers: ''The Damned'' series has the Amplitur, with some mind control abilities, humans [[spoiler:and Lepar]], who can resist them, in the case of humans with extremely bad results on the Amplitur, and as of the second book, ''The False Mirror'', there is a group of humans known as the Core that has the Amplitur mind control ability.
* PsychicStatic: In ''The Damned'', the Amplitur, the villainous aliens of the setting, can mind-control any sentient species except humans. We put them into comas.
* ReluctantWarrior: In ''The Damned'', every soldier in the Weave is this. Most of the Weave races abhor even the thought of violence, and the ones that can bring themselves to fight do so with much distaste. Their foes, the psychic influence-wielding Amplitur, do not like to fight either, but their fanatical belief in uniting all species beneath the banner of "The Purpose" drives them to do so, and they don't hesitate in genetically modifying species under their rule in order to make them better fighters. The only species that enjoys fighting is humanity. The Weave manages to recruit humankind, and the only thing that frightens them more than having humans as allies is the possibility of humans falling under the Amplitur's control.



* RockBeatsLaser: At one point in ''A Call to Arms'', a company-sized unit of alien tanks is immobilized, then defeated by a band of Seminole Indians wielding mud, bows and arrows, and paint-ball guns. Of course, by that time in the story, it's been revealed that human beings are the most bad-ass fighters in the known galaxy.
* ScaryAmoralReligion: In ''The Damned'' trilogy, "The Purpose" is a religion promoted by the bad guys in which all sentient life in the Galaxy comes together in cooperation by abandoning freedom and free will. And the purpose of this cooperation? To force those species who don't necessarily want to be a part of the Purpose to join up or die.
* ScaryDogmaticAliens: The Amplitur of ''The Damned'' trilogy. They seek to unite every species in the galaxy for some mysterious and vague ideal they call "the Purpose", and they use their MindControl powers and armies of SlaveMooks to do so.



* SlaveMooks: In ''The Damned'' series, the "allied species" (don't kid yourself) of the telepathic Amplitur have been so heavily brainwashed that they happily throw themselves into battle in order to promote the Amplitur's "purpose", and will never so much as think of refusing an order... sorry, a "polite request" (again, don't kid yourself) from an Amplitur. Ever.
26th Apr '17 1:57:20 AM PaulA
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* TheAlliance: The Weave in ''The Damned'' trilogy.


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* TheRez: ''Cyber Way'' largely takes place on the Navajo (Dineh) reservation. The novel is set in the near future and the reservation has built a duty-free international airport, so is not particularly poor, but also has some hidden phlebotinum.


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* TheSingularity: The Solarian Combine in ''Design For Great-Day'' is a multispecies HiveMind that is seeking to evolve into a higher order of consciousness (while still having enough mental power to spare to send ships into neighboring galaxies to resolve their disputes). It is implied that The Singularity will be the result. This is also an example of nested singularities, as the Solarian Combine is itself the product of a singularity event that produced the Hive Mind in the first place.


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* ThisIsMyHuman: ''Cat-A-Lyst'' has the human hero adopting a small cat early on. In reality, the cat is an extra-dimensional entity that fights off the real villain while the humans fight off his minions. In the end the cat decides to stay on Earth and watch over her pets.
* TotemPoleTrench: ''Kingdoms of Light'' features Khaxan Munderucu, an incredibly powerful giant evil spellcaster. He's really twenty-two goblin mages in a giant TotemPoleTrench, all combining their magic.
* UnwantedRescue: Played with in the ''Journey of the Catechist'' trilogy. Etjole Ehomba promises a dying man that he will rescue the beautiful Visioness Themaril, who has been kidnapped by the sorcerer/warlord Hymneth the Possessed, and return her to her home city. After many adventures, he and his companions storm Hymneth's fortress to discover that the Visoness has decided to stay, believing that her influence can make him less evil. Etjole proceeds to bring her home by force -- and then, having fulfilled his promise, immediately turns around and takes her right back to Hymneth.
* UpliftedAnimal: In the ''Taken'' trilogy, one of the main characters is a dog named George who has been abducted by aliens and given human-level intelligence and the ability to communicate.
* WalkingWasteland: ''Journeys of the Catechist'' briefly featured the living essence of Corruption. One character hits Corruption in the neck with his sword, which promptly rusts and rots away in seconds. A similar being, called the Drounge, was encountered in the third book. Descriptions of its travels before encountering the heroes tell of mysterious plagues, withered crops, and epidemics. Even touching the thing rots away all the flesh on one character's hand.
* WeaponizedCar: In "Why Johnny Can't Speed", a tongue-in-cheek revenge tale. In this short story, road rage is legal, so all vehicles are armed to the teeth. A father sets out to avenge his son who was killed disputing a lane change.


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* WhatAPieceOfJunk: In the short story "Banzai Runner", the title character drives one. Banzai runners are people who have extremely high speed street races in 'stock' Ferraris and Porsches. The Wisp, as the titular Runner is known, drives a four-door sedan...with the engine from a racing plane built into the trunk.
26th Apr '17 1:36:09 AM PaulA
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* ''AudioPlay/PassageToMoauv''


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* CoolHorse: Mad Amos Malone's horse, Worthless, who is ¼ unicorn (plus ¼ mustang, ¼ Arabian, and ¼ Clydesdale).


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* CrapsackWorld: India in ''Sagramanda''. Rampant poverty, the poor attacking people to get money, greedy corporations that just leave it that way, a man eating tiger just left alone, multiple hit men, and an insane serial murderer feature prominently, as does somebody who tries to kill his own son because of the caste system.
* CrazyPrepared: Etjole Ehomba, central character of ''Journeys of the Catechist'', carries any number of magical and alchemical gifts in his backpack. Most of these are intended for use in other applications, but prove effective in whatever crazy-ass situation he's currently facing as well. In addition, his "sky-metal sword" usually has a hidden ability perfect for whatever foe he's fighting.


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* DeathWorld: Earth is considered a Death World in ''The Damned'', by a coalition of alien races whose worlds all have low gravity, low tectonics, practically no axial tilt (preventing violent weather) and few true predators. The average unskilled couch-potato human is more than a match for their trained soldiers. Trained Earth military personnel, especially special-operations types, are essentially incarnate demigods of death by alien standards.


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* FasterThanLightTravel: In ''Design for Great-Day'', the Solarian Combine's ships can traverse a galaxy in a matter of hours, and intragalactic jaunts are considered to be fairly trivial, if not entirely routine.


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* GoneHorriblyRight: In ''The Damned'', humans are the warrior species to an absurd extent, well above anything else. Additionally, they are actively immune to MindControl -- any telepath trying to contact them feels great pain, trying to control humans is nearly fatal. In the second book of the trilogy, this leads to a strategy of genetically engineering a subspecies of human with slight alterations to make them mind-controllable, to pass them off as another species and to be even better than the other humans. The new creatures are raised and trained among aliens, and it all works really, really well until they find out who they really are and switch sides. Now certain humans are even more deadly. And while somewhat susceptible to mind control, they are adept at it themselves.


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* HumansAreTheRealMonsters: In ''The Damned'', humans appeared in a world where all life would be impossible by the standards of most aliens, and we went through some unpleasant evolutionary contortions to survive, but if we last much longer without outside interference, we'll achieve peace. Unfortunately, outside interference is coming -- and by book 3, after a thousand years as CannonFodder in an interstellar war, the humans are less "human" psychologically than the aliens are.


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* MagnificentBastard: Kees van Loo-Macklin in ''The Man Who Used the Universe''. Starting as a homely and abused orphan and using nothing but determination and brainpower, he becomes one of the most powerful criminal figures in human space. Then he sells out almost all his old cronies, convincing everyone that he was really an undercover law enforcement agent. From there, he manipulates the human dominated empire and its chief rival by becoming a double agent for both sides against the other in order to trick them into forming an alliance in order to attack a race that knows nothing about either side. He uses this con in order to become the president of the combined alliance. Along the way are littered the bodies of many rivals and innocent victims who were simply more useful to him dead than alive. And why does he do all of this? To fulfill a lifelong desire never to feel vulnerable again.


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* ModernMayincatecEmpire: ''Cat-A-Lyst'' features one in an alternate universe.
* MountainMan: A series of short stories about [[NamesToRunAwayFrom Mad Amos]] Malone, a GeniusBruiser mountain man who wandered the west from Colorado to Hawaii and had a variety of supernatural adventures.
* MultiArmedAndDangerous: In the Tipping Point trilogy, bodily manipulation is as easy as getting new custom-fitted clothing and is often used to add extra limbs. Note that these are not necessarily weapons, or designed explicitly to carry weapons; for instance, a waiter may get an extra set of arms to improve carrying capacity.
* NecessarilyEvil: ''The Man Who Used the Universe''.
* NeverBeHurtAgain: ''The Man Who Used the Universe''. Kees vaan Loo-Macklin creates a criminal empire and a legitimate business empire and manipulates too many beings to name (both human and alien). He does this because he was abandoned as a child and grew up in a series of foster homes where he was mistreated because of his appearance, and was determined never to be helpless and mistreated again.
* NighInvulnerability: In ''Journeys of the Catechist'', the eromakasi (eaters of light) can only be killed by eromakadi, because they are basically mist, and need to be sucked in. The most powerful mage in the world has two of them as bodyguards.
* NormalFishInATinyPond: In "Gift of a Worthless Man", written for the ''...Who Needs Enemies'' anthology, a low criminal crashlands on a planet inhabited by sentient roach-like creatures stuck in Ancient Ages. He teaches them agriculture and basic craftsmanship and essentially uplifts their society, so that 100 years later, they are already have industry.
* ObfuscatingStupidity:
** In ''The Damned Trilogy'', [[spoiler:the Lepar are an entire species doing this]].
** In ''The Journey of the Catechist'', this turns out to be the case with [[spoiler:Hunkapa Aub]].
* PantheraAwesome:
** In ''Kingdoms of Light'' a spell transforms a bird, a terrier, a snake and three cats into humans to return color to the drab Kingdom of Gowlands after it was taken over by an evil warlock and his goblin hordes. During the FinalBattle all the animals transform into larger wild animal counterparts of their respective species. The bird turns into a firebird, the terrier into a large wolfdog, the snake into a reticulated python, and the three cats into a lion, a panther, and a leopard respectively.
** The ''Journeys of the Catechist'' series has Ahlitah, a hybrid of lion and cheetah, who possesses his father's strength (the lion), and his mother's speed. He basically serves as TheSnarkKnight throughout the series, and TheBigGuy for the first book.
* PlanetOfHats:
** In ''Design for Great-Day'', a spiderlike species is mentioned whose hat is... hats. [[NiceHat Nice ones]].
** In ''The Damned'', all of humanity wears the BloodKnight hat once an interstellar war lands in our laps. And it's a good thing, too, because every other species in these novels either wear the Programmed For Pacifism hat or the Reluctant Clumsy Warrior hat, and being good at killing things is our only hope to survive in the face of technological superiority. Well... that and being immune to telepathy. Humans are the only species that doesn't have a single, unified culture, because we're the only ones who're such bastards that we can't even get along with members of our own species.
* PlantAliens: In ''Cat-A-Lyst'', the protagonists meet up with a starfaring band of treelike aliens who possess genius-level intelligence but are somewhat lacking in the common-sense department.
* ProsceniumReveal: ''Cat-A-lyst'' opens with a battle in the American Civil War, before the protagonist flubs his line and it's revealed to be a film shoot.
* ProudWarriorRaceGuy: In ''The Damned'', humanity is the proud warrior race. By virtue of being the only species in the galaxy that has evolved to be able to stomach fighting and killing other sentient beings, without fainting out of horror or revulsion, humanity is freakishly strong (capable of breaking other species' bones just by swatting their hands away), enormously resilient and completely batshit crazy. So much so, in fact, that the galactic community refuses to grant humanity citizenship for centuries after co-opting them to fight in a war against the ScaryDogmaticAliens.
* PsychicBlockDefense: In ''The Damned'' trilogy, not only are humans immune to the psychic powers of the Amplitur, but applying telepathy to humans turns out to be very painful and near-fatal. [[spoiler:Later we find that Lepar are immune too, but they don't hurt Amplitur.]]
* PsychicPowers: ''The Damned'' series has the Amplitur, with some mind control abilities, humans [[spoiler:and Lepar]], who can resist them, in the case of humans with extremely bad results on the Amplitur, and as of the second book, ''The False Mirror'', there is a group of humans known as the Core that has the Amplitur mind control ability.
* PsychicStatic: In ''The Damned'', the Amplitur, the villainous aliens of the setting, can mind-control any sentient species except humans. We put them into comas.
* ReluctantWarrior: In ''The Damned'', every soldier in the Weave is this. Most of the Weave races abhor even the thought of violence, and the ones that can bring themselves to fight do so with much distaste. Their foes, the psychic influence-wielding Amplitur, do not like to fight either, but their fanatical belief in uniting all species beneath the banner of "The Purpose" drives them to do so, and they don't hesitate in genetically modifying species under their rule in order to make them better fighters. The only species that enjoys fighting is humanity. The Weave manages to recruit humankind, and the only thing that frightens them more than having humans as allies is the possibility of humans falling under the Amplitur's control.
* RockBeatsLaser: At one point in ''A Call to Arms'', a company-sized unit of alien tanks is immobilized, then defeated by a band of Seminole Indians wielding mud, bows and arrows, and paint-ball guns. Of course, by that time in the story, it's been revealed that human beings are the most bad-ass fighters in the known galaxy.
* ScaryAmoralReligion: In ''The Damned'' trilogy, "The Purpose" is a religion promoted by the bad guys in which all sentient life in the Galaxy comes together in cooperation by abandoning freedom and free will. And the purpose of this cooperation? To force those species who don't necessarily want to be a part of the Purpose to join up or die.
* ScaryDogmaticAliens: The Amplitur of ''The Damned'' trilogy. They seek to unite every species in the galaxy for some mysterious and vague ideal they call "the Purpose", and they use their MindControl powers and armies of SlaveMooks to do so.
* SealedBadassInACan: In "With Friends Like These...", Humanity was sealed under a forcefield a long time ago because we scared the aliens that badly. When aliens later release the humans in exchange for helping them against a bigger menace, one of the aliens has the sense to worry, "What happens when we run out of enemies?".
* SlaveMooks: In ''The Damned'' series, the "allied species" (don't kid yourself) of the telepathic Amplitur have been so heavily brainwashed that they happily throw themselves into battle in order to promote the Amplitur's "purpose", and will never so much as think of refusing an order... sorry, a "polite request" (again, don't kid yourself) from an Amplitur. Ever.
* SubspaceAnsible: In ''Design for Great-Day'', the Solarian Combine is a kind of galactic HiveMind created as a natural extension of intelligent beings learning to live and think in harmony. Said thought processes apparently travel instantaneously, ignoring the speed of light.
* SufficientlyAdvancedAlien: ''Design for Great-Day'' features humanity (or to be more specific, the Solarian Combine), as a super-advanced multi-species who are on the brink of transcending matter itself and becoming Sufficiently Advanced Aliens.
* SuperweaponSurprise: In "With Friends Like These...", a peaceful galactic federation faces attackers it cannot handle and in desperation turns to its outcasts, the historically militaristic [[spoiler:humans]], currently in quarantine on their homeworld, for help. The landing party is both amazed and disappointed to discover an almost pastoral planet of peaceful citizens that doesn't match their expectations at all -- until one of the local kids [[spoiler:disintegrates one of the attackers that followed them with a stick and PsychicPowers]] and their hosts, upon accepting their offer, reveal that [[spoiler:not only did they have the requisite war machines cleverly hidden underground all along and are eager to use them again, but they've somehow managed to turn their ''planet'' into a starship]]. Which leads one of the vistors to seriously question what will happen once the war is won...
* {{Telepathy}}: The Solarian Combine in ''Design for Great-Day'' have developed telepathy into what is effectively a multi-species, intergalactic HiveMind. This is treated as the natural and [[TheSingularity penultimate evolutionary stage]] of all species.
25th Apr '17 11:11:45 PM PaulA
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* HorsingAround: In the Mad Amos stories, his horse, Worthless, is an ugly, mean, brute of a horse who frequently bites Amos, urinates on his boots, or otherwise makes life miserable for the mountain man. And Amos is the one person the horse actually ''likes''. When he goes after someone he ''doesn't'' like...
* HumanityEnsues: In ''Kingdoms of Light'', the familiars of a fallen wizard--a snake, two cats, a dog, and a bird--are transformed into humans and forced to cross a weird dimension that represents the land of light (in the form of a huge rainbow) in order to bring back the power of light to a now darkly colored world.
* HumanityIsAdvanced: In the short story "With Friends Like These...", Humanity is so advanced that [[spoiler:when they agree to help their new alien allies, they bring Earth with them]].
* HumanityIsInsane: ''The Damned''. Humans evolved on a planet that shouldn't have been able to support life, in a way that shouldn't have produced a sentient species, and while as individuals we're usually decent, we display disturbing tendencies in our speech patterns and our art that are magnified when we're in large groups. We're also immune to MindReading, with spectacular results any time it's tried.
* HumanityIsSuperior: Humans in ''The Damned Trilogy'' are faster, stronger, tougher, and fiercer than every other sentient species, bar none. They're also the only species with the ability to resist the PsychicPowers of the Amplitur, who have brainwashed entire species into being happy slaves. So, the discovery of humanity by the Weave of free species at the beginning of the first book marks a critical turning point in their war to remain free. Unfortunately, humans are feared by the other sympathetic alien species precisely for those qualities and the uncomfortable question comes up that if they win the war, what will happen to human/alien relations then? Technically there are faster, stronger and tougher races than humans but Humans are a JackOfAllStats species, faster than the strongest species, stronger than the fastest but fiercer than all.
* HumansAreCthulhu:
** The science fiction trilogy ''The Damned'' has two vast coalitions of aliens at war with each other for millenia across the Milky Way. One faction (the good-guy underdogs) discovers Earth and finds that compared to every other known intelligent species modern-day humans are unbelievably fast and strong and savage, both physically and psychologically (none of the other species is particularly good at the concept of "waging war"). They ultimately decide they have no choice but to recruit humanity to their cause anyway, knowing that once the war is won they'll have a very dangerous situation on their hands trying to figure out how to live safely with their allies.
** The short story "With Friends Like These..." takes a look at the theme from another angle. Ages ago, the old galactic civilization deemed humanity too dangerous and [[TheWallAroundTheWorld sealed off Earth]] until it became a myth, but now aliens needs Mankind's skill at battle against another alien race. So a few representatives go to Earth, see a quiet pastoral culture relaxing in a hammock, and ask the "mythical creatures" to help. Cue the [[FreakOut little shock]] when aliens see [[spoiler:that humans are so calm because their hammock is [[SufficientlyAdvancedAlien too high]] on [[AbusingTheKardashevScaleForFunAndProfit The Kardashev Scale]] to worry. Not only have humans evolved psionic powers and are in telepathic contact with various other mammalian species (which presumably they [[UpliftedAnimal Uplifted]]), not only is the whole planet filled with machinery and computers for miles below the surface, but ''the entire freaking planet Earth (with moon) breaks orbit to follow the aliens' starship''!]].
** A story-within-a-story seen in ''Carnivores of Light and Darkness'' tells of two warring anthills contacting a man, probably to get him to help destroy the other mound. One group of ants sees this as a divine miracle.
* HumansAreDiplomats: In ''Design For Great-Day'', humans have this role. It's suggested that this is due to humans having an exceptional flair with language (being able to "talk the legs off a crocodile and insult its parentage in the process").
* HumansAreFlawed: In ''The Damned'' trilogy humanity is discovered by an alliance of super-civilized alien species who are being forced to fight a war against their will. Compared to them we are portrayed as barely civilized, warlike, violence-crazed and brutish, and indeed our love for inflicting death and destruction makes us the perfect soldiers. However we're also capable of great things, and many humans try to control their instincts and strive for more than just being the alliance's grunts.
* HumansAreSpecial:
** In ''Design for Great-Day'', human loquaciousness is described as being their special talent. Other races can speak conversationally and use metaphors and everything else we associate with speech, but humans in particular are known for their ability to "talk the legs off an alligator and cast serious doubts on its parentage in the process". The implication is that while other races ''can'' use speech this way (it is, after all, an alien saying this of humans), humans are inherently better at it.
** ''The Damned'' portrays a galaxy full of pacifist civilizations that evolved on tame worlds. Few of these species can tolerate even mild violence without going catatonic from the experience. These alien races are slowly losing a galactic war to a race of cephalopods whose mastery of genetic engineering and mind control allows them to make slightly better soldiers than the free races. An alien expedition looking for allies to fight the cephalopods discover Earth, and is immediately struck by the hostility of the environment. By Damned universe standards, Earth is a DeathWorld with impossibly harsh climates, high tectonic activity, high risk of meteor showers and geography that encourages political conflict. As a result, humans are far stronger, faster and more aggressive than any sentient species the aliens have ever encountered. Humans even seem to enjoy violence. The aliens are both horrified and thrilled. Naturally, they recruit us to fight our wars for them as soon as possible. The cephalopods soon discover that attempting mind control on humans does nothing to humans, and drives the aliens trying it catatonic. Later, they attempt to engineer a race of humans that are good at fighting but vulnerable to control. Unfortunately (for them) it backfires horribly when [[spoiler:these humans develop strong psychic powers and turn on them. Realizing that they are eventually going to lose the war, the squids enact a BatmanGambit by unconditionally surrendering to the galactic alliance that includes the humans, having calculated that without the war to occupy the humans, restless mankind will soon become a problem for its allies. The other races armed humans with advanced weaponry and medical technology. They won't stand a chance if mankind decides to conquer ''them''.]]
* HumansAreWarriors:
** ''The Damned'' trilogy has a coalition of pacifistic aliens who have been fighting a centuries-long losing battle against a race of fanatical, mindwashing conquerors moved by a mysterious spiritual/religious principle. The problem is that every race is so civilized, few can even conceive of hurting another sentient, and even those who aren't quite that civilized and try to do whatever fighting is necessary aren't really any good at it. Then the coalition finds humans, a race ripe with contradictions but whose fighting abilities are beyond anything anyone, friend or enemy, has ever seen. [[spoiler:And immune to the Amplitur mindwashing.]] In fact, humans can be so unpredictably and barbarically violent that the coalition would prefer to not use humanity at all, and only relents because if the enemy gets to them first the war is essentially over. A ''lot'' of [[CurbStompBattle curb-stomping]] ensues.
** "With Friends Like These..." is told from the alien point of view. Humanity was [[SealedEvilInACan sealed under a forcefield]] a long time ago because we scared them ''that badly''. When they release the humans in exchange for helping them against a bigger menace, one of the aliens has the sense to worry "What happens when we run out of enemies?".
* IGaveMyWord: In ''Journeys of the Catechist'', the main character gets stuck with a LastRequest from a dying soldier to save a kidnapped princess from the evil necromancer who'd kidnapped her. After working his way through three books worth of [[WackyWaysideTribe crazy adventures]] to find her and defeat the necromancer, he discovers that in the meantime she's fallen in love with her captor. Being a man of his word, he insists on taking her back to her family, but promises that he'll grant her one request. So she asks to go back to the necromancer (which involves more crazy adventures, but all off screen this time). The companions he picked up along the way all express their opinions that he's fallen well into LawfulStupid territory.
* IndianBurialGround: The short story "Ferrohippus" is about MountainMan Mad Amos Malone aiding a tribe who are trying to keep railroad construction from disturbing their ancient burial site. It ends when the ancient unleashes a literal [[HellishHorse Iron Horse]] that tears up a section of the rail and chases off the foreman, causing the replacement foreman to decide that routing the line away from the site is a good idea.
* InsanityImmunity: In ''To The Vanishing Point'', Burnfingers Begay can deal with the shifting realities matter-of-factly because he's already crazy.
25th Apr '17 9:05:17 PM PaulA
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* AbsurdlySharpBlade: The contemporary fantasy novel ''Into the Out Of'' features an African master woodcarver who furnishes the heroes with ''wooden'' knives and spears so sharp they give you a paper-cut like cut just from touching the edges of the blades and can be thrown right through a wall. You can't even quite make out where the edge of one of them ends and the air begins, they're so sharp. As one of the characters describes them:
-->"They are wood, but they are anything but ordinary. There are no other such weapons anywhere in the world. They are blackwood plus history, blackwood plus a little of every weapon that has ever been. There are the spears of the great Zulu impis in each edge, the power of Tamerlane's hordes, the thrust of Caesar's legions. On the very edge of each swim things that race the components of existence around racetracks on which the beginning and end of the universe is the bet. They contain weapons that have not been and weapons that will never be. They are blackwood plus all that plus Nafasi. Into them he has put his heart and soul and much more. They will cut well. I think they will even cut a [[TheLegionsOfHell shetani]]."
* AlienAnimals: In ''Cat-A-Lyst'', cats are really advanced and (mostly-)benevolent aliens.
* AliensInCardiff: The first scouting sortie of the alien collective in ''A Call to Arms'' encounters as its first human contact a musician in a fishing boat off the coast of Belize.
* AndroidsAndDetectives: ''Greenthieves'' deals with a detective who's paired with a singularly perverted 'humaniform' android, as well as a snarky ([[AndIMustScream if only in his mind]]) Minder, basically a floating, orb-shaped AI.
* AssimilationPlot: ''Design for Great-Day'' features the Solarian Combine, a vision of the potential future of mankind as merely one member of a galaxy-spanning "supermind", capable of enormous mental feats and extremely close to having power over matter/energy itself. Unusually for the trope, this is portrayed as a good thing.
* BalefulPolymorph: In ''Kingdoms of Light'', the Six-Man Band consists of a mage's pets (three cats, a dog, a canary, and a snake), turned into humans by the mage's dying spell. In the end, they are captured by the evil Munderucu and turned back into animals--[[spoiler:except that due to character growth, they not only remained [[TalkingAnimal sentient]], but they became great cats, a huge wolf, a firebird, and a 40-foot python. Oops.]]
* BizarreHumanBiology: In the Tipping Point Trilogy, body modification has become basically as easy as getting a haircut. PowerPerversionPotential is rampant.
* BoringReturnJourney: In the ''Journeys of the Catechist'' series, the main character accepts the dying wish of a man and goes to save that man's fiancée from being held by the evil overlord of a distant kingdom. The trilogy is three books of the most creative weird obstacles you could ask for, with only about a quarter of the third book being spent in the overlord's kingdom. Then the main character takes the girl back to her kingdom from halfway through the second book, then [[spoiler:back to the overlord because she'd fallen for him]], then he goes all the way back to his own village. All without a description of the events.
* CarFu: In ''To the Vanishing Point'', it's a two-bedroom Winnebago RV versus the elemental Chaos-thing "the Anarchis".
-->"You have done well," the other orange fish told him. "Steel is good for weakening Chaos. Aluminum is better still."
* TheChessmaster: Kees vaan Loo-Macklin, ''The Man Who Used the Universe''.
* CookingDuel: In the Mad Amos short story "Witchen Woes", Mad Amos has a literal Cooking Duel (a chili cookoff) with a kitchen witch as a kind of exorcism.
* CuteButCacophonic: This is applied to an entire sentient species in the ''Taken'' trilogy--they're basically {{Cat Girl}}s ([[DudeLooksLikeALady even the guys]]), but have voices comparable to garbage disposals. In this case, symbolism rules, as they're initially quite charming [[CuteMonsterGirl and cute]], but they're a ProudWarriorRace and their sanity is somewhat dubious.
* DarkWorld: The Out Of in ''Into the Out Of'' is the parallel dimension where the demons are coming from. The heroes have to go there to close the gates.
* DepopulationBomb: In ''Design For Great-Day'', the Solarian Combine is said to have used a Depopulation Bomb on the worlds of a particularly belligerent species; the effect of said bomb being to completely stop them from reproducing. One hundred or so years later, there were no more belligerent aliens. This rumor is enough to bring the Solarians' current target species to the negotiating table, although it's later revealed that they've grown far beyond such crude methods in the intervening centuries.
* DudeLooksLikeALady: There's an entire species of these in the ''Taken'' trilogy. When they talk, however, they sound like garbage disposals, as fits their combination of an absolute sense of honor and a fondness for killing.
* ExpandedStatesOfAmerica: In ''The Mocking Program'', the US has merged with several Central American countries to form a nation usually called "Namerica" (probably a contraction of North America). The story takes place mainly in the Montezuma Strip, which runs along the former US/Mexican border.
* FacelessEye: In ''Kingdoms of Light'', the Sea of Blue is in fact a colossal eye, known to the creatures of that sea as the Eye of the Beholder.
* FakeOutOpening: ''Cat-A-Lyst'' opens with two soldiers on a battlefield in the American Civil War. It turns out to be a scene from a movie, starring the main character.
* FalseFlagOperation: In ''The Man Who Used the Universe'', Kees vaan Loo-Macklin creates a false attack by a previously unknown alien species [[spoiler:to ''prevent'' war between humanity and the Nuel by [[EnemyMine forcing their militaries to work together]] against the new threat]]. In the interests of making the deception convincing, he has himself shot repeatedly to the extent that he loses an arm.
* FearsomeCrittersOfAmericanFolklore: One of Mad Amos Malone's adventures involved taking a British Great White Hunter to bag a jackalope, only for him to lose it when they discover the jackalope's natural predator.
* GenghisGambit: In ''The Man Who Used the Universe'', this gambit on a galactic scale is one of the final stages of the hero's ultimate plan.
25th Apr '17 8:01:29 PM PaulA
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* ''Literature/GloryLane''


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!!Other works contain examples of:

* GodlySidestep: Knucker the Knower, who knows everything when he's drunk, tells Etjole Ehomba the meaning of life in ''Into the Thinking Kingdoms''. Ehomba is pleased with the answer, but since Knucker whispered the answer, the reader never finds out.
* TheMirrorShowsYourTrueSelf: ''Journeys of the Catechist'' features the main character, Ehomba, using a mirror to scare away some creatures that had been bombarding the party with giant pine cones. Afterward, each character looks into the mirror in turn. The normally jovial and exuberant Simna appears much more somber and depressed, the enormous cat Ahlitah appears as the height of feline majesty, and the recovering drunkard Knucker sees himself as he is when drinking. When Ehomba first looks into the mirror, the other three are momentarily blinded by the sun's reflection when they try to look. Looking again, the mirror is showing Ehomba exactly as he is. [[spoiler:Only Ahlitah notices that the sun was in front of Ehomba, not behind him, and so couldn't have been the source of the light that the others saw in the mirror.]]
* WeirdWest: A series of short stories about "Mad Amos" Malone, a giant MountainMan with a vast knowledge of all things arcane and mysterious who battles assorted dragons, ghosts, and other occult goings-on in the Old West.
25th Apr '17 7:45:42 PM PaulA
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!!Some of his works:
* The books in the ''Literature/HumanxCommonwealth'' universe, including a few subseries and some standalone books. Its timeline can be found [[http://www.librarything.com/series/Humanx+Commonwealth%3A+timeline here]]. Subseries in this universe:

to:

!!Some [[folder:Some of his works:
works]]
* The books in the ''Literature/HumanxCommonwealth'' ''Humanx Commonwealth'' universe, including a few subseries and some standalone books. Its timeline can be found [[http://www.librarything.com/series/Humanx+Commonwealth%3A+timeline here]]. Subseries in this universe:



* The ''Literature/{{Spellsinger}}'' series, about a young man who gets [[TrappedInAnotherWorld pulled into]] another, [[MagicalLand magical]], [[FunnyAnimal universe]] by a wizard trying to find someone to save their part of the world, and then can't return.

to:

* The ''Literature/{{Spellsinger}}'' ''Spellsinger'' series, about a young man who gets [[TrappedInAnotherWorld pulled into]] another, [[MagicalLand magical]], [[FunnyAnimal universe]] by a wizard trying to find someone to save their part of the world, and then can't return.



* ''Literature/JourneysOfTheCatechist'': A trilogy about a tribesman sent on a quest to rescue another man's betrothed entirely because of how his tribe views the requests of a dying man.

to:

* ''Literature/JourneysOfTheCatechist'': ''Journeys of the Catechist'': A trilogy about a tribesman sent on a quest to rescue another man's betrothed entirely because of how his tribe views the requests of a dying man.



** ''Literature/SplinterOfTheMindsEye'', designed as a potential low-budget sequel.
** ''Literature/TheApproachingStorm'', a direct prequel to ''Film/AttackOfTheClones''.
* ''{{Literature/Quozl}}'', about BenevolentAlienInvasion of anthropomorphic rabbits.

to:

** ''Literature/SplinterOfTheMindsEye'', ''Splinter of the Mind's Eye'', designed as a potential low-budget sequel.
** ''Literature/TheApproachingStorm'', ''The Approaching Storm'', a direct prequel to ''Film/AttackOfTheClones''.
* ''{{Literature/Quozl}}'', ''Quozl'', about BenevolentAlienInvasion of anthropomorphic rabbits. rabbits.
[[/folder]]
----
!!Works with their own trope pages include:

* ''Literature/TheApproachingStorm''
* ''Literature/HumanxCommonwealth'' series
* ''{{Literature/Quozl}}''
* ''Literature/{{Shadowkeep}}''
* ''Literature/{{Spellsinger}}'' series
* ''Literature/SplinterOfTheMindsEye''
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