Science Fiction Books/Rhum?


Stephen wrote at 2007-06-11 09:54:53
I remember this story, I think that I read it in the 60ís when I was a teenager. It was in an anthology, by a quite well known American author (I think). I came across this question because I was looking for the spelling of the machine/collector. I also feel that it was spelt something like Rhumm, as Rhum is an island off the West coast of Scotland and Iím sure that would have stuck. (Eigg, Muck and  Rhum.)


kim wrote at 2007-06-28 11:15:04
I remember reading this story as a child in the sixties. It was in a book of short stories. From memory the character was left in the wilderness and then discovered great swaths of trees which had been mown down by a large round object. It then started to pursue him. I would be most interested to know where I could find it again.

russell wrote at 2007-07-13 16:19:19
this story was in a book with about three or four other short stories.witch I read in secondary school in the mid 70s

Gary wrote at 2007-08-07 04:19:36
We read this in highschool english class(Canada)in 1971.  It was in a book of short stories...

I remember this guy came across a forested area with animals of similar size and weight hanging in the trees.  

A chase took place and he did indeed lose weight during the chase.  The alien picked him up but released him unharmed because he did not fall within the required weight parameters of his prey.

I remember the story was called "THE RHUM"   That's all I remember...

rivche wrote at 2007-08-30 12:44:00
My boyfriend's father asked that I find the title of this same story!  He has been searching for years.

Here is his description:

Unknown: Author, date (either sixties or seventies), title.   


The story of a man (could have been a hunter) in the woods, I think it was Canada (maybe) who came across a collection of animals in a preserved state, that dated back  to prehistoric times, dinosaurs, etc, all the way up to modern times, the animals ranged in WEIGHT from 150 lbs. to maybe 200 or 250lbs.  That was key to the story.  The "collector" was a machine left long ago by an alien race, that hunted down and preserved the "specimens", then brought them back to the isolated location the man had stumbled upon.  The machine moved at a rate of 5 mph, but it was unerring in tracking.  It could run down any animal on earth with its constant pursuit, you could outrun it for a time, but it didn't rest and you had to.  The man "awakened" it and it started after him.  Anyway, it chased him for days, he tried to shoot it, but it was immune.  After many days it finally caught him when he was exhausted and given up, and picked him up to weigh him, and he had lost so much weight in the chase that he was under the 150lb limit and the machine set him down and went back to its lair.

Rivche wrote at 2007-09-12 00:55:29
I FOUND THE ANSWER. The story is called. "The Ruum" and was written by Arthur Porges (The Fly).  It is featured in many anthologies.

queenvik wrote at 2009-09-01 07:32:52
There is story is called 'the ruum' (which i thought was 'rhum' as well...) that sounds very similar... it was written in the 50's by Arthur Porges.

fran wrote at 2009-11-01 03:43:49
I studied this as a "short story" during my final year English studies in 1964. I too would love to know where to find this story and its author.

shuggie wrote at 2010-03-13 06:17:45
I too read this story at school in the early 80's.As i remember, the Rhum callected different animal specimens over a vast period of time.The character in the book was indeed pursued by the Rhum but managed to evade it until when near the books end,as he gazed at the form of a beautiful woman he felt a sharp pearcing-the Rhum had snared him as it's latest victim-by projecting the woman's form and distracting him.

Mark wrote at 2010-07-02 15:32:06  This gives you the book for free. Written in 1953 by Arthur Porges. I read it in the 70's.

and wrote at 2011-03-14 17:48:40
I remember the story. Try ruum, or ruhm, that is what I am going to do next.  I was only thinking about it recently because I remember it was a great puzzle to solve as you were going through the story, and also captured the relentless fear extremely vividly ...

JackieK wrote at 2011-06-17 18:33:30
I read the story (The Rhum) in high school (BC) in the mid-sixties. It was interesting enough that it is one of the few short stories that I recall. I don't know where you would find it.

Jo wrote at 2012-04-30 01:58:22
The story is titled "The Rhum."  You're correct.  It is about an alien probe left on earth to collect species weighing between a certain amount.  It chases the man endlessly over several days.  At the end it catches him, but he has lost weight and so he is too light to be paralzyed and added to the collection of different animals in the valley.  I know it was part of a collection of short stories for young adults read in the public school system.  This was about 35 years ago.  I do not know the name of the title of the book.  I also enjoyed the story.  It was one of my favorites!  I wish I knew where to get a copy.

Joe wrote at 2012-06-16 10:55:47
For what it is worth, I have also been trying to find a book containing this short story. I first came accross it in a book of short stories that was being used by Scottish schools c.1970. I am convinced that ir was called "The Rhum" or "The Rhumm" but, unfortunately, I cannot remember the name of the author.

ian -'dul wrote at 2013-01-11 15:26:19

LDR      nam a22002291a 4500

001 015667028

003 Uk

005 20110805002005.0

007 ta

008 110630s2010    enk          000 j eng d

015 |a GBB192940 |2 bnb

020 |a 9780955694264 (pbk.)

040 |a IiNdDKA |b eng |c IiNdDKA

042 |a ukblsr

08204 |a 813.54 |2 23

1001 |a Porges, Arthur, |d 1915-2006.

24010 |a Short stories. |k Selections

24514 |a The Ruum and other science fiction stories / |c Arthur Porges ; edited by Richard Simms.

250 |a 1st pbk. ed.

260 |a Surrey : |b Richard Simms Publications, |c 2010.

300 |a 141 p. ; |c 23 cm.

650 0 |a Science fiction, American.

650 0 |a American fiction |y 20th century.

7001 |a Simms, Richard, |d 1970-

85241 |a British Library |b HMNTS |j YK.2011.a.23256

SYS 015667028  

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Bill Denholm


I have a large collection of paperback SF. I am a serious collector. I can answer quetions about books by a particular author or books published by a particular publisher. I have a special interest in cover art and the artists who do the covers.


I have been collecting SF paperbacks since the 1950s and I have many reference books about Science Fiction.

Various magazines for paperback book collectors.

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