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The Van Rijn Method: The Technic Civilization Saga #1 [Mass Market Paperback]

Poul Anderson
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
RRP: 6.50
Price: 6.29 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

24 Nov 2009 Technic Civilization
Follow the exploits of Nicholas Van Rijn, one of Science Fiction's most popular characters, as told by Science Fiction's Grand Master, Poul Anderson, in Volume 1 in the Complete Technic Civilization Series.

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The Van Rijn Method: The Technic Civilization Saga #1 + David Falkayn: Star Trader (Technic Civilization) + Captain Flandry: Defender of the Terran Empire (Technic Civilization)
Price For All Three: 18.29

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Baen Books (24 Nov 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439133263
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439133262
  • Product Dimensions: 17.4 x 12.8 x 3.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 778,857 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Poul Anderson was one of the most prolific and popular writers in science fiction. He won the Hugo Award seven times and the Nebula Award three times, as well as many other awards, notably including the Grand Master Award of the Science Fiction Writers of America for a lifetime of distinguished achievement. With a degree in physics, and a wide knowledge of other fields of science, he was noted for building stories on a solid foundation of real science, as well as for being one of the most skilled creators of fast-paced adventure stories. He was author of over a hundred novels and story collections, and several hundred short stories, as well as several mysteries and non-fiction books. He died in 2001.

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
3.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good old-fashioned space adventure 16 Aug 2010
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
In my review of C.J.Cherryh's 'Pride of Chanur', I said I like my science fiction to be nice and Traveller-esque. By that I mean 'in the style of the Traveller role-playing game setting'. Until I came across these stories, I'd never quite found the series I was looking for in this respect.

I should have looked here earlier. Poul Anderson's 'Technic Civilisation' saga has long been cited as an influence on Traveller. In my defence though, it has been difficult to get hold of in a sensible format. You see, these stories are mostly short stories, and appeared over several decades in a variety of SF magazines and anthologies. They were written and published out of chronological order too. So hats off to Baen for collecting all the stories together and publishing them in several volumes (of which 'The Van Rijn Method' is the first) in the order in which the stories are set.

So we start off in 'The Saturn Game' with the first expedition to the moons of Saturn, then meet our first aliens one short story and a century later in 'Wings of Victory'. And that's before we've even met the title character, the merchant prince Nicholas van Rijn.

Van Rijn is a larger-than-life interstellar merchant. If they ever make a TV series of these books (and they would very much suit a TV series), Omid Djalili could play van Rijn. MoneysuperMARKetdotCOM.

Some of the short stories are good, some are very good and some read like a really good role-playing group playing one of the classic Traveller adventures. 'The Three Cornered Wheel' in particular was like this. It features the other main character in this part of the saga - a young merchant officer called David Falkayn. The one longer story (short novel in length) in the book doesn't quite reach the quality of the short stories.

Highly recommended if you're looking for some (Traveller-esque) good old fashioned space opera.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book 11 May 2010
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Great author, great stories. I have always liked the Polesotechnic League stories best of Poul Andersons works (except for the classic High Crusade) & this series of collected stories is a mega find.
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1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars the making money method 1 Aug 2009
I remember reading novels and short stories about Van Rijn, lo these many years back, and being enthralled. In theory, it was a good thing to reprint the collected works for a whole new generation to read. Unhappily, the stories simply didn't have the same impact or interest, seeming quite outdated and tired.
Perhaps I'm just old, tho I prefer 'world weary', but this just ends up being another way to earn a buck.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars  20 reviews
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classics 22 Aug 2008
By S. M Stirling - Published on
Anderson is one of the grand masters of the field, and these adventures -- carefully thought-out, with solid worldbuilding and scientific speculation, plus great characters and wonderful action -- are classics. If you want to know science fiction, you should read these. And if you want to have a great time... then read them for that, too.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blessed be the collectors and reprinters 27 Jan 2010
By Marcy L. Thompson - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
These stories are wonderful -- if you haven't read them before, stop reading this review and start reading the stories. You're in for a treat. This is volume one of a proposed six-volume collation of Poul Anderson's wonderful Technic stories, starting with the beginnings of human exploration of the solar system, and moving out into the heyday of the Commonwealth. The world building is superb, the stories fun, and the characters fascinating (and believable). Wonderful stuff, and now we can read them in internal chronological order. So much fun!
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thank you, Baen! 29 Nov 2008
By Joy V. Smith - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I was so happy to see another classic reprint from Baen. (I have the Christopher Anvil and James H. Schmitz collections.) I enjoyed the Polesotechnic League stories years ago, especially the adventures of David Falkayn, Chee Lan, and Adzel; and I'm really looking forward to the second volume, David Falkayn, Star Trader. Van Rijn's character is a nice change of pace for space exploration, and his twists on old sayings are fun, such as "This is the times that fry men's souls." Also, his stirring speech in The Man Who Counts that incorporated the famous speeches from Terra's history: "This blessed plot, ...," Pericles' funeral speech, Scots Wha' Hae, the Gettysburg Address, and something about St. Crispin's Day. (I'm not familiar with the Pericles speech or St. Crispin's Day. I'd like to see them all referenced somewhere.) Anyway, thanks again Baen for letting more people enjoy these classics!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Classics that can still entertain 21 Sep 2010
By Neil G. Matthews - Published on
If you enjoy stories involving worlds created by a talented author with a physics degree (and thus has the background to create believable worlds), then this book is worth a look. Comprised of ten short stories plus a novella, set on imaginative worlds where there is often a challenging problem to overcome, this first collection of Technic Civilization stories includes a range of characters, with several, including the novella, featuring Nicholas Van Rijn. The stories written later in the series show how Poul Anderson has improved his skills and the novella, written in 1958, provides an interesting baseline from which you can see how the author has developed over the decades. I enjoyed the later book in the series more than this one, which is why I've rated this down. Read the series in order and your enjoyment can only grow!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Technic Civilization series is top-notch 11 Feb 2010
By Bruce Trinque - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Baen Books has thus far published five ominbus volumes of Poul Anderson's "Technic Civilization" tales, with two more planned to complete the series. "Van Rijn's Method" is the first volume. Together, the seven volumes will cover thousands of years of future history.

I first read most of these stories decades ago, and it is an immense pleasure to find them all together in one collection. Poul Anderson was particularly noted for his "hard science fiction" (fiction with a goodly dose of real, physical science behind it) and this is particularly evident in the detail and care with which he crafted the numerous worlds upon which his characters found themselves. And the natives of those numerous worlds were never simply humans in bad make-up (as characterized the original "Star Trek" television series), but true aliens in physiology and psychology. While Anderson's stories had no shortage of intense action, at heart they were driven by ideas, and most usually heroes achieved victory by thinking rather than shooting.

In the Technic Civilization stories Anderson created some of the most popular, enduring characters in all of science fiction, including Nicholas van Rijn and Dominic Flandry -- and this collection of tales contains all the van Rijn and Flandry stories and books (as well as others having nothing directly to do with those flamboyant heroes).

If you already are familiar with Poul Anderson's Technic Civilization series, this multi-volume collection is your cup of tea. And if you are not familiar with it, you owe it to yourself to read them to become acquainted with some really classic science fiction.
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