The Fury Out Of Time
Copyright 1965 by
I first read this in 1969 and most recently on the 27th June 2004
Bowden Karvel, disabled ex-pilot, lives in a trailer park next to the Hatch Air Force base.
He's bored and frustrated and spends his time hanging on the fringes of
air-force life, drinking to fill his days.
When a UFO lands destroying houses and inhabitants, he is there to save the injured
and to quickly divines from where and when this UFO has come. Indeed the UFO has
arrived from the future and that is where Karvel will go to warn the UFO's owners of
immense destruction its passage causes.
In the far future, he makes a friend of the cute bearded lady "Languages 9-17",
nicknamed Wilurzil and Marnox, a fellow pilot. Experiencing the cruel dictatorship
of the time, his '60s American sense of justice and fair-play kicks in and starts
the revolution before flying off once more to meet some aliens.
It's a busy time, but tough Karvel will struggle through to a successful conclusion,
even if he kills off some of his companions through lack of forward thinking.
As a teenager, I thought it was pretty exciting. It had bundles of cool ideas: UFOs, time travel paradoxes, evil emperors, aliens, tough
guys and surprisingly tough, but lovelorn, girlies, and lots of destruction,
specifically the swathe of destruction wreaked every time the UFO lands.
Rereading it as a mature, responsible and deeply sophisticated adult, even with a
shot of Tequila, revealed that it was weaker than I recalled. It does
start off rather well, but much like H. G. Wells' "Time Machine" loses - in my
terms - direction, drifting off into social commentary rather than revelling in
the joy of technology unleashed. On the other hand I have the same criticism of
the modern masterpiece "Alien Resurrection", so perhaps it's just my current mood.
Actually, Biggle is a very good story teller and this is a pretty enjoyable novel
for the younger reader.
Loaded on the 14th August 2005.
Cover art by David Davies
Reviews of other works by Lloyd Biggle Jr.: Monument
Reviews of other works with covers by David Davies: Analogue Men