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Vampires of Venus by Anthony Pelcher

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"Vampires of Venus" is a 1930 science fiction short story by Anthony Pelcher. It is about an entomologist who is taken to Venus to help study and vanquish a newly discovered monster.

Non-Spoiler Summary

mosquito by kensiev, CC 2.0 license

Leslie Larner is a very methodical and studious professor of Entomology, and leads a very predictable and boring life – except for his yearly fishing trip to the Rocky Mountains. But just as he is about to leave on his vacation he receives a strange note indicating that someone will meet him in Colorado. He doesn’t give it much credence, but while he is fishing a pair of very strange humanoids visit him and reveal that they are from Venus and that their world is under attack from a strange new beast that sucks the blood out of people. They ask him to come back with them and help study the creature, and Professor Larner agrees. (It helps his decision that one of the aliens is a beautiful woman!) Anyway, they whisk off in their fancy spaceship and thus begins the adventures of Leslie Larner and his impact on the people and history of Venus.

My Two Cents

  • Story: 3 stars – The story itself is a pretty run-of-the-mill SF tale from the early 20th century… but that is what’s so cool about it!
  • Writing: 3 stars – Again, kind of average, but what do you expect from a story that is over 80 years old?
  • Fun Factor: 5 stars – Darn it! I couldn’t help but enjoy this story! The classic, golden age feel to it, and all the hope and dreams about what might exist in our solar system made this story a blast to read!

Where To Find Vampires of Venus

  • This story was first published in the April 1930 edition of Astounding Stories of Super-Science.
  • You can read "Vampires of Venus" for free online at Project Gutenberg (this link is for the entire issue, so be sure to click on the appropriate story).
  • It is also included in the Anthology of Sci-Fi V16, the Pulp Writers.

Craving More SF Stories Like This One?

If you enjoyed "Angel of Europa" then you might also like “The Radiant Car Thy Sparrows Drew” by Catherynne M. Valente – about a famous Documentarian who goes to Venus to film strange, sea-dwelling life forms.