Monday, November 7, 2011
Rachel's contribution is called "Mattie Harris, Galactic Spy," first published in Vertex, April 1974. The story tells the tale of a voluptuous young woman named Matilda Harris (some word play on Mata Hari) who, as the title states, is an Intergalactic spy "with a emphasis on the gal." Matilda must prevent an assassination. Her suspects include a hot-blooded folk singer from Betelgeuse IV and an unsavory attaché - an arthropod named Ontha Lefnik - who is from an unfriendly planet in the Caroline series. In the end it's a very (deliberately) silly story.
Among the other ninety-nine tales are several written by people with strong Oz connections: two by Harlan Ellison (big Oz fan), one by Robert Payes (Rachel's son), one by Oz club charter member Ruth Berman, one by Philip José Farmer (author of Barnstormer in Oz), and a story by Lester Del Rey (part of the Del Rey publishing line responsible for the mass-market Baum Oz books and a dozen or so trade-paperback Thompson Oz books). The volume also includes stories by such icons as Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, Robert Silverberg, Larry Niven, William F. Nolan, and many others.