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Science Fiction Books/Sci-Fi series of short stories.


Hey there,

Hope you can help me with this one. Two of the stories that I remember have following plots:

Two space delivery man take a job to a planet. One of them discovered that his partner, instead of buying supplies for the trip, bought a replicator. They suffer a breakdown, and try to replicate necessary parts, but the replicator AI refuses to replicate a part more than once, since he is bored of it. Eventually, they convince his to replicate himself in effort to bypass this issue but discover that now replicators want to replicate nothing but themselves.

Second story is about the same two people, they travel to a station where everyone has died a violent death. They discover that a gas that would take shape of one's nightmares and make them physical is responsible for this. The fog replicates a crocodile like creature out of their childhood nightmare (plus some other), but they defeat it eventually by hiding under the blanker and using water pistol's as kid's imagination would.

I would really like to find out who the writer was, series name or anything at all that would let me find those books again.

Both stories were written by Robert Sheckley, my favourite SF short story author. The first story is called "The Necessary Thing" and the 2nd one is called "Ghost V". Here is more info on the subject:-

This is called " AAA Ace Interplanetary (or Planet) Decontamination Service" series.The anthology book you probably read was "The People Trap" which contains both those stories. However, if you want to read all of them in one book, then you had better buy "The Masque of Manana" mentioned in the above link which contains all of the AAA Ace series of short stories in one work.



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I have read most of the short stories and books produced by the Top 80-100 authors in the SF field, as well as more obscure authors such as Robert Sheckley, and can answer any queries regarding author, title or theme of a science fiction short story(or novel). I can also answer questions on the history and influence of Science Fiction past to present, as well as on specific SF genres such as Cyberpunk,Golden Age SF, H G Wells-style scientific romances etc. I do not answer questions about books/stories set in the Fantasy genre.


Am currently doing a writing course for writing Science Fiction Books, with the Writer's Bureau in the UK.<

Am considering becoming an amateur writer of Science Fiction. Other than that, no academic credentials, I simply have read a multitude of SF books and stories, with an emphasis on stories from H G Wells to the 1980s.

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