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In a tiny log cabin a boy listened with delight to the storytelling of his In a tiny log cabin a boy listened with delight to the storytelling of his ma and pa. He traced letters in sand, snow, and dust.
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He has been called home to reign with his brother Tola, as tribal king. Previously described as over 9ft tall, in this tale he is eye-to-eye with 6ft Tom while kneeling in front of him. Tola -Currently residing in Europe and touring with a traveling circus.
Twin brother of Koku. Now deceased. Usurper King of Ambolata. On the throne due to political machinations executed during Tom Swift in Captivity. Ambolata Prime Minister -No name or description.
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Contacted Tola with word of Kosk's demise. Does not appear in the story. Hardman Bane - A short, stocky man about forty years of age, of dark complexion and wearing a small moustache. Behind his glasses, are two black eyes. Allegedly, a medical doctor "affiliated with a large New York hospital. Practices medicine without a license. All around baddie and principal nemesis in this tale. Nonymous Night Watchman- Faceless and nameless Swift security guard, called to lock up the lab after Koku is poisoned.
Nubile Nurse Nancy- No name or description, except "pretty and young. Chester Chilton -A newcomer to Shopton, was exceptionally well educated and a very likeable person. Attending Koku. No significant parts in the story. Rad -Aged stereotypical Negro manservant. Eradicate has now "become too old to be trusted on guard duty any more.
Constant rival and antagonist of giant Koku. In this tale, he is said to be "soon to go to join his old mule Boomerang in the regions of the Beyond. Jason -NLN or description. Morton -NFN or description.
Hospital Chief of Staff. Prone to wild mood swings. Red Faced O'Reilly -No real name or description. Shopton beat cop, called to arrest Tom for "practicing medicine without a license. Never fully described. In previous tales he was "portly" with a moustache and "tortoise-shell glasses. In this tome, we find he is "a spry little man," quite bald and wears a luxurious white wig.
This figures prominently in the story line. He appears to be quite wealthy. Previously a victim of travel conveyance trouble, he wrecks whatever he tries to pilot in this tome, he does not smash anything.
Chief Bender's Burden: The Silent Struggle of a Baseball Star
Professor Edward Bayley -No description. Horticulturist acquaintance of Tom from an earlier unspecified adventure. Looking for work. Associated with unnamed State College. Kirkfold -NFN or description. Lab assistant taken along on the SA trip to Ambolata. Janberry - NFN or description.
Supposedly an old timer Swift employee. May have been the unnamed steward in Airline Express. Rolls his eyes a lot when frightened. Selected to be king if he can prove he is worthy. Under Chief Malata -No description.
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Generic ruler of a particular tribe and village. Trio of Wabawaba Warriors -Sent to do single combat against Amo. Killed and beheaded for their pains. The following major characters either have only casual mention or are not present in this episode. Barton "Bart" Swift -Tom's aged father. On the dust jacket of Chest of Secrets , his appearance is remarkably like that of Robert E. Lee, but with glasses. Wealthy and conservative. Inventor, master machinist and holder of numerous patents. In this episode, he has only a walk-on part and plays no significant part in the story.
In charge of "several" maids. Mother figure, she loves Tom like a son. Walk-on part in this tale. Mary Nestor-Swift -Radiant bride of Tom. Described as a "very pretty young woman with flashing brown eyes, and a sweet trilling laugh. In this tale, she only has a walk-on part, welcoming Tom home from his adventures in Giant Land.
Garrett Jackson -No description given, but is spry and fit for his age. Original volumes described him as an "aged. Does not appear. Helen Morton- No description. Love interest of Ned Newton. In this tale, she does not appear or even rate mention. As is usual lately, many of these characters especially the ones introduced late in the story do not rate any development or even a description. They are brought forth and discarded after they do their bits to make the story flow. Major Inventions:. The Metalanthium Lamp-Prisms, lenses, a glowing, hissing lamp, and a filter into which chemical compounds can be introduced.
Said filter is made from a new metal called lanthium, and a screen made of borsidan.
Tom Swift and his Electric Rifle
Lanthium is a soft metal used as a doping agent in manufacturing camera lenses. The name is derived from the Greek lanthana to lie hidden. Borsidan is a fanciful element that does not really exist. ABC is the antidote, which can be administered by mouth or intravenously.
The Enhanced Sky Train-Now able to hover without visible means of support courtesy yet another new and improved "lifting gas that is safe as Helium, but much less expensive. Now equipped with "wireless telephone. Electric Handgun-Pocket-sized version of the famous Plasma Blaster.
Has all the capabilities of its' bigger brother, plus concealability. Reading the old Tom Swift Sr. It also has given me a grasp of just how technologically and culturally unsophisticated the average reader was in even the 's. Attitudes and Prejudices - Some clews although that term was not used in this story that were detected as to the author of this tale : This tale reeks with the usual string of coincidences that are required to allow the story line to progress. The story also requires foreboding, in this case, literal prophecy , to prepare for events that make the plot flow.
Characters are introduced and discarded with abandon. Many important players are not present or at best are relegated to walk-on parts. The author's engineering knowledge is minimal. Her knowledge and references to earlier inventions and events in the Tom Swift Universe are mostly accurate, although capabilities have been improved, such as the Sky Train being able to "hover," and there now being a handgun version of the Electric Rifle. The look-and-feel of the text is very familiar and formulaic.
The similarity in writing style and attitudes in the past few episodes points, in my judgment, to a consistent author. It is stated elsewhere that Harriet Stratemeyer gave up editing these tales to raise her children, and only picked up the pen again, after her father's demise. The choices of names and places in the tale Parana-piranha, Hard-Man Bane for the antihero, Wilson-of sports equipment fame-ABC and others, smacks of someone who is either distracted or perhaps out-of-practice and in a hurry to crank out a tale to make some quick cash.
Real-world events are mostly blissfully ignored in this tale.
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