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Fuzzy Nation

By far one of the Grand-Daddies of anthropomorphic science fiction (as opposed to furry fantasy or children’s stories) is the Fuzzy series by the late H. Beam Piper. Beginning with Little Fuzzy in 1962, Piper introduced us to the short, fur-covered in inhabitants of the planet Zarathustra, and what happens when humans colonizing the planet stumble across them. (Yes, we’re certain that George Lucas read the book as a young man, too.) Piper wrote a second Fuzzy book (Fuzzy Sapiens), but then he committed suicide in 1964, seemingly bringing the series to an end. However, the books continued to grow in popularity, becoming nearly required reading for up-and-coming science fiction fans in the 1970’s and 80’s. Eventually, Ace Books hired William Tuning to write a third book in the series, and Fuzzy Bones was the result. Some time later, Ardath Mayar wrote a book called Golden Dreams: A Fuzzy Odyssey, which told of the planet Zarathustra from the point of view of the fuzzies themselves — and postulated that they were actually a space-fairing race.  Then, strangely enough, H. Beam Piper’s missing third Fuzzy book turned up, Fuzzies and Other People, and the history of Zarathustra was changed all over again. So, why are we telling you all this now? Well, it seems that author John Scalzi has decided to “reboot” the Fuzzy series all over again with his new book, Fuzzy Nation. It’s available now from Tor Books. According to the press release, it tells the story of one Jack Holloway, who discovers a wealth of gems on the planet Zarathustra. They belong to company that hired Jack, so long as there are no sentient species on the planet.  Then, these fuzzy little aliens show up in Jack’s camp…