I read this book some time ago.

The story is about two men and two women who are abducted by aliens. They meet each other on a space ship. Later on, they are released onto a planet where they have to survive. They meet also four other aliens (two male and two female). When it comes to a fight, the people from Earth win but they don't kill the aliens.

Then the other aliens come and tell them that Earth will not will be destroyed, and that they can stay on the planet or will be brought back to Earth.

They stay, and the alien say the other test subjects from Earth in other places also stayed.

  • This is reminiscent of "Have space suit, will travel" by Heinlein.
    – JohnP
    Sep 15, 2013 at 14:57
  • I don't believe it is "Have Space Suit.." I have looked for this myself. It is closer to the Frederic Brown story Arena (TOS episode of same) and even closer to the Outer Limits episode "Fun and Games" in which a human male and female are pitted in combat against an alien male and female with the fate of the Earth as prize. However, BigBen49 is correct. This novel had TWO human male/female pairs. I also recall that before abduction the humans were "hypnotically" led to pack trunks with items they felt they needed. One man was embarrassed when it was discovered he had packed pornography.
    – beichst
    Sep 15, 2013 at 22:43
  • I remember reading this in ~1986, however it was much older. I have a vague recollection that it might have been an Ace or Tor "double". I.e. a single bound paperback with two novels back to back and two "front" covers.
    – beichst
    Sep 15, 2013 at 22:46
  • I didn't think it was "HSSWT" either, but tossed it out there in case OP was misremembering some of the details.
    – JohnP
    Sep 16, 2013 at 15:09

1 Answer 1


A favorite story of mine - Transit, by Edmund Cooper 1964. Richard Avery picks up a jewel in London and wakes up on the spaceship. Spoiler:

A dying civilization is looking to leave everything to the race that survives life on an island far far away. Golden people lose, humans win, but with a real emphasis on human frailty and the power to connect.

Hope you can find a copy.


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