I read this in Russian, but its original language may have been either Russian or English. I read it approximately 8-10 years ago, but it was probably older than that.

I think it was a collection of short stories, though it may have been a single story as well.

I can remember two distinct plot points:

  1. There are teleports. You can use them as would use a phone booth - step in, dial the address, and you're there. The protagonist is a male, possibly a writer, or someone who is to interview a writer. He tries to use a portal, only to discover that the portal network was temporarily disabled due to solar activity. He doesn't proceed to use it. Also, this scene might have been near a lake, or some retirement house.

  2. The resurrection technology. A man walks in a desolated or a destroyed city, and finds a corpse. He injects the corpse with something that was supposed to bring the corpse back to life. I don't remember whether the corpse came back to life, but it is implied that this technology is common and working, at least to some extent (the resurrected people might not be fully-functional). The man might have had a dog as a companion, though I am fuzzy on that.

It may be a Simak story, since I was reading him at the time.

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    What happens to the man who tries to use the non-functioning portal? Does the portal do something bad to him, or is he just stuck someplace where he doesn't want to be? Did the corpse come back to life?
    – user14111
    Commented Jan 13, 2017 at 10:45
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    @user14111 - he doesn't use it, he goes like "Damn, picked some time to be deactivated". I don't remember if the corpse comes back to life, but the implication is that this technology is pretty common and working, at least to some extent. Commented Jan 13, 2017 at 10:49
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    Phonebooth teleportation networks remind me of Niven, although I'm sure other authors have used that as well. Commented Jan 13, 2017 at 15:25
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    @DanSmolinske - Flash Crowd sounds similar - it's got a reporter, phone booths, though I'm not sure if it's the one unless it has the disabling solar activity. Commented Jan 13, 2017 at 16:15
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    Hum, I remember a story based on Public Teleoportation Booths, you dial in a number and you go there. Personal residences were supposed to be protected but some one gets some where they are not supposed to based on a "glitch" that happened, your solar flare could or could not fit that. Regardless the story then progresses based on what is found in the place (a residence). A name of a book keeps flitting through my brain with the characters last name being Foyle. That would be about some one that worked in space, accident and teleported to Earth from Jupiter(?) vs short 100's of miles .. Commented May 21, 2017 at 18:15

4 Answers 4


The book is called Beetle in the Anthill (Жук в муравейнике), by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky. It's set in their Noon Universe, an anthology of which I was reading some time ago. The book's protagonist is Maxim Kammerer, who was introduced in The Inhabited Island, is on a semi-secret mission, using a "journalist" legend. Maxim narration is mixed with the memories of Lev Abalkin, a Progressor whom Maxim has to track (this is why I thought the book was a collection of short stories, it seems).

The teleportation technology is called "null-trasportation". Maxim does not actually try to use it, as it is malfunctioning (not sure if it's due to solar activity, though). He does indeed go to sort of a retirement house, and has to swim across a lake to get there.

The resurrection technology is based on injections of something called "necrophage". Lev Abalkin, in whose memories this is happening, injects two syringes to a newly deceased person, and says that he'll come to life. His "dog" companion is called Shekn (Щекн), except he's not a dog - he's a golovan, a canine species with intellect on par with humans'.

Found this when re-reading Strugatskys' works, this time in another anthology.


[From Tv Tropes "Teleportation" page on the Literature Section]

I narrowed it down to the three. It may be one of them or it could be another story on the 'Literature' section so please check! Thank you!

Larry Niven

The Known Space 'verse has humans installing "transfer booths" throughout the world, which creates all sorts of changes in society on Earth due to their virtually free running costs: Geographical identity vanishes in the face of global monoculture; people travel all over the world for minor errands like shopping; whenever anything happens on the news a massive "flash crowd" zips in from every corner of the earth after hearing about it; and whenever there is a crime, no one has an alibi. The Puppeteers' "stepping disks" also play a major role in the Ringworld sequels.

He also put teleporting booths in the otherwise hard-science A World out of Time. Unlike the Known Space teleporters, these were innately short-range and required a long, unbroken string of booths to travel long distances.

Katherine Kurtz

Katherine Kurtz's Deryni have Transfer Portals, which are small areas on a floor or earth (usually roughly a square meter at most) that have unique psychic signatures (described as a faint tingling sensation for the Deryni who touch them or stand on them). Deryni can travel instantaneously between two Portals by standing on the departure Portal, mentally concentrating on the destination Portal and "warping the energies just so". There are a number of limitations which keep them from being excessively advantageous:

Deryni must know the signatures of both Portals (to ensure they end up where they intended to go and can safely return). A highly skilled Deryni could give another Deryni a sufficiently accurate impression of a Portal's signature for the recipient to able to use it, but most Deryni read Portal signatures directly for themselves. Repeated jumps are mentally and physically tiring, as are longer distance trips.

A Deryni can take another person or similar amount of matter through, but not much more than that. Taking another living person through requires that the "passenger" relinquish mental control to the active partner. This can mean lowering one's shields or being unconscious. Portals can be set to limit their use even if their signatures are widely known. A Portal may be set so that it can only be detected by certain people, and it can be set so that a person could use it yet be unable to leave the Portal square (even to teleport back!) unless released by the Portal's owner or some designated person(s).

Dan Simmons

Dan Simmons's novel Illium has some of its cast living in the aftermath of The Singularity. Most transportation on Earth now involves "neutrino faxing" through faxnodes, which achieve instantaneous travel from any node to another by transmitting only the data of the traveler's composition from node to node, breaking down the original into raw matter, stored for the reconstruction of other travelers. Faxing is technically death and instant cloning at the other side, complete with memories. When they find out, this bothers the main characters for all of 5 seconds. Hinted at to the reader who recalls that "fax" is a shortening of "facsimile," or exact copy...

There is also "quantum teleportation'', which is used by the post-humans and the Olympian Gods. It actually transports the user rather than disintegrating and recreating them, as well as allowing time travel and travel between alternate universes. Simmons does extremely high technology in his science fiction as a matter of course. His somewhat more famous Hyperion series had galactic society linked by wormhole-like portals on countless worlds. The absurdly super-rich had houses with doors built out of these portals, meaning their house could technically be on a dozen or more different planets. Of course, when the portal network crashes... Thanks to the persecutions and the Laws of Ramos, some Portals were destroyed and others are kept secret. Building a Portal requires specialized knowledge that in twelfth-century Gwynedd is not widespread, as well as a great deal of energy.

  • It's probably Niven, because the other two don't seem remotely familiar. I'll drop by my library and check it. Commented Jan 14, 2017 at 7:57
  • I searched Niven's book for some keywords, and it found nothing :( Commented Jan 15, 2017 at 19:45
  • The description does remind me of Hyperion, especially the few short stories part, that was the thing that caught my attention about Hyperion the first time I read it. Also the resurrection part plays an important part in the story(more so in the later parts of the series admittedly).
    – Retrus
    Commented Jan 19, 2017 at 15:58

You might want to check the book "One step from Earth". ( https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/710843.One_Step_from_Earth ) as it features stories about teleportation. I do not remember if it contains all the things you have mentioned, but it's worth a shot.

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    Harrison's collection was one of the first thoughts I had as well. But, I have read One Step from Earth a number of times and can confirm as I read the detailed descriptions, I can confirm it does not have either of the stories described.
    – beichst
    Commented Jan 14, 2017 at 6:05

Could the teleportation story have been The Stars My Destination by Alfred Bester? In that story people have developed the ability to teleport short distances. But to travel long distances like other cities and countries they need to use a network of teleportation pads that amplifies.their ability.

  • Nah, they couldn't teleport by themselves, they had to use the booths all the time. Commented Jan 16, 2017 at 16:47
  • Did the teleportation booth create two bodies of the person? Like a clone of the original? Commented Jan 18, 2017 at 19:56

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