Crack Lieutenant Dominic Flandry was not a man easily swayed from his duty to the Empire... not, that is, until galactic vice king Leon Ammon offered him a million credit bribe, a voluptuous woman called Djana, and a commission to explore a dark and treasureladen moon.
But within the desolate peaks and valleys of that strange world of ice and shadow, Flandry found more he had bargained for. Supposedly barren, the planet swarmed with a hideous race of strange, inhuman creatures... infernally controlled by a deranged and brilliant computer brain. Each creature, like a piece in a bizarre and lethal chess game, was programmed to kill.
And although Flandry did not know it – so was the woman he loved...
Details updated August 23, 2021
Poul Anderson (1926–2001) was born in Pennsylvania of Scandinavian stock. He started publishing science fiction in 1947 and became one the great figures in the genre, serving as President of the Science Fiction Writers of America, winning many Hugo and Nebula awards, and also winning the Gandalf (Grand Master) Award.