I read a book called the A-Z book of Science Fiction from the school library ~30 years ago.

Each story was about a subject in alphabetical order. The first story was about aliens (about how humans get stranded on an hi G alien planet, there was a later story Government about a leader that had implants that let him feel the pleasure or pain of the population).

Anyone have the ISBN or other location information for a book that might match this discription?

1 Answer 1


I believe this is the Asimov book "Science fiction A to Z : a dictionary of the great s.f. themes" The first story is "Alien Worlds, Too Soon to Die". A description of the ISBN information can be found at:

A 1: http://www.torontopubliclibrary.ca/detail.jsp?Entt=RDM2241485&R=2241485

Publication information: Boston : Houghton Mifflin, 1982. ISBN: 039531285X Language: English

The short story regarding the leader which feels the pain of the population is "Troublemaker" by Christopher Anvil. You can find an online copy of "Troublemaker" in the collection "Interstellar Patrol II" at the following site. A great collection of short stories by Christopher Anvil.

Interstellar Patrol II online copy

Interstellar Patrol II online copy 2


  • Those links go to password protected FTP sites. Please add the username and password or remove the links (there is no point in links that are not usable by the questions readers)
    – Walter
    Apr 24, 2015 at 17:37
  • Thanks! The description of Too Soon to Die is the story that I remember. I used the ISBN to order a used copy from Amazon.
    – Walter
    Apr 24, 2015 at 17:50
  • @Walter. interesting. I was able to get to the site without any password or other issue. Are you sure you don't have some setting in your browser set that is preventing access? If not I can remove if needed.
    – beichst
    Apr 24, 2015 at 19:46
  • I didn't need credentials to get either of the .pdfs.
    – adamdc78
    Apr 24, 2015 at 21:21
  • @beichst It was the web proxy at work. At home, without a web filter, it doesn't ask me to authenticate to the FTP site. I haven't seen that behavior in the web proxy before.
    – Walter
    Apr 25, 2015 at 23:24

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