Fuzzy Nation

Fuzzy Nation

Book - 2011
Average Rating:
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Jack Holloway works alone, for reasons he doesn't care to talk about. Hundreds of miles from ZaraCorp's headquarters on planet, 178 light-years from the corporation's headquarters on Earth, Jack is content as an independent contractor, prospecting and surveying at his own pace. As for his past, that's not up for discussion.

Then, in the wake of an accidental cliff collapse, Jack discovers a seam of unimaginably valuable jewels, to which he manages to lay legal claim just as ZaraCorp is cancelling their contract with him for his part in causing the collapse. Briefly in the catbird seat, legally speaking, Jack pressures ZaraCorp into recognizing his claim, and cuts them in as partners to help extract the wealth.

But there's another wrinkle to ZaraCorp's relationship with the planet Zarathustra. Their entire legal right to exploit the verdant Earth-like planet, the basis of the wealth they derive from extracting its resources, is based on being able to certify to the authorities on Earth that Zarathustra is home to no sentient species.

Then a small furry biped--trusting, appealing, and ridiculously cute--shows up at Jack's outback home. Followed by its family. As it dawns on Jack that despite their stature, these are people, he begins to suspect that ZaraCorp's claim to a planet's worth of wealth is very flimsy indeed...and that ZaraCorp may stop at nothing to eliminate the "fuzzys" before their existence becomes more widely known.

Old Man's War Series
#1 Old Man's War
#2 The Ghost Brigades
#3 The Last Colony
#4 Zoe's Tale
#5 The Human Division
#6 The End of All Things
Short fiction: "After the Coup"

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Publisher: New York : Tor, 2011
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780765328540
9780765367037
Branch Call Number: S.F. SCAL
Characteristics: 301 p.

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SCL_Justin Jul 20, 2017

Fuzzy Nation is John Scalzi’s reboot of H. Beam Piper’s classic science fiction book Little Fuzzy. I haven’t read the original, but Scalzi’s version is a lot of fun.

Jack Holloway is an ex-lawyer current-prospector on a remote planet who finds a huge mineral claim. He also finds a bunch of fuz... Read More »


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SCL_Justin Jul 20, 2017

Fuzzy Nation is John Scalzi’s reboot of H. Beam Piper’s classic science fiction book Little Fuzzy. I haven’t read the original, but Scalzi’s version is a lot of fun.

Jack Holloway is an ex-lawyer current-prospector on a remote planet who finds a huge mineral claim. He also finds a bunch of fuzzy creatures that take up residence in his home out in the (dangerous) jungle. The story follows the wrangling over people getting what they want, which isn’t always completely obvious. There’s intrigue and CSI-type stuff, courtroom drama, and debates over sentience. All classic SF stuff.

There are a few points where I think I can guess how the original differed from Scalzi’s story, just in the way some things are set up that feel specifically modern, but there are only enough of them to make you feel like you’re clever. They don’t dominate the proceedings.

Like most of Scalzi’s work, it’s a quick read, but worth the time if you like witty scifi.

Liz_the_Librarian Jul 01, 2017

While it's a tad slow to start off (despite having an explosion in the first chapter), and the main character is a bit of a jerk, it (and he) grow on you throughout the novel, which will make you think about deep philosophical questions of what constitutes sentience. It can also make you angry (as it did for me), but in a good way. The ending was a tad disappointing, but it's still definitely worth the read for the emotions and questions it brings up!

j
JRP65
Feb 08, 2017

I liked this book, but it just doesn't have enough of the Fuzzies in comparison to the originals, by H. Beam Piper & others.
Movies/TV shows need to be made of the original series (including the other authors). With the technology of CGI, as evidenced in Avatar (the Nav'i), it can be done properly.
Please, some awesome CGI production get it into gear! :^D

AL_KATHRYNR Nov 18, 2016

Like most of Scalzi's standalone works, Fuzzy Nation is a little silly, making this sci-fi story a fun romp through otherwise dull corporate law and geopolitical intrigue.

g
GuyN
Mar 17, 2015

A reasonable expansion of an Scifi short story where the interests of a mega corporation conflict with the survival of a cute, cat-like fuzzy native species. Is it sentient? While not epic, this a an enjoyable and sometimes sardonically funny read.

j
joshualatos
Jan 07, 2015

A sort of sci-fi courtroom drama. It's funny, easy to read, and at the same time discusses larger issues of the morality of humankind. This is one of those books I'd recommend to my friends.

a
AngryCrow
Sep 04, 2014

I haven't read the original, but purely as an entertaining book, it is certainly entertaining. John Scalzi has his flaws, but his stories never cease to be amusing. A book filled with Scalzi's usual humor, as well as an assortment of somewhat unusual characters. Entertaining and thought provoking.

YourUserName Aug 14, 2013

Not having read Piper's original books, I can't compare them to Scalzi's "reboot," but I enjoyed the brisk pace, snappy dialog, and vivid description. On a planet with so many voracious predators it seems a little hard to believe the fuzzys could exist, not being able to do much more than scratch and bite a potential attacker -- but Scalzi's skill as a writer makes it easy to suspend disbelief and just enjoy the ride.

f
FatCat22
Jan 25, 2013

A whole different cast than the original "Little Fuzzy", save two. However, Jack Holloway is a much younger man, and Little Fuzzy is not an innocent tyke.

The setting is similar. The plot summary the same: Zara(thustra) Company's charter is null and void if there is indiginous sapient life on the planet.

The action, politics and characters are harsher than H. Beam Piper's original telling. But I think this plays to an audience that is nearly 3/4 of a century later than the original readers.

p
pinky0203
Nov 17, 2012

I just finished this and must say that while I enjoyed it and cried when he describes the death of two of the Fuzzies, I felt like there was something missing. The original series by H. Beam Piper takes place over several books and I almost get the feeling that this may be in store for this remake. Scalzi does make some changes to the original story and that's okay, otherwise it would just be the old story with updated tech. But I am curious whether he plans any sequels such as Piper wrote which go into more depth about the Fuzzies. I guess we will just have to wait and see.

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