A book about interplanetary trade, called Starship Traders by Norton?

thatmtnman

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Hi Everyone,

I'm trying to remember a book by I believe 'Norton' circa the 1950s to 60's. The dust jacket cover was of a person standing in the open door of a classic 1950's pointed cigar shaped spaceship.

I believe the title was 'Starship Traders', but I can't remember. I checked the Norton site and there's nothing there. It was basically about a 'clan' of individual space traders who got together every 'once and a while' as a people.

Can someone help?
 

Vertigo

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Now this is bugging me. I remember reading a similar story not so long ago and I can't find it in my database at all, so possibly I borrowed it and never entered it into my db. I also can't remember much about it, which is unusual for me. If it is the same one then I'm pretty sure it wasn't Norton as I haven't read any of hers for ages.

If it is the same story then here's a few points I remember. The space traders are a community similar to the gypsies. They have their own laws and customs. They have a periodic gatherings on a planet where the local indigenous race welcomes them. I seem to remember that this is also when they do all their 'courting'. On this occasion they are gathering to decide what to do about a number of ships that have gone missing in a particular area of space. The ship with the main protagionists goes off to investigate and then my mind goes blank.

Possibly I came across it in some random place and never finished it, I really can't remember.
 

Vertigo

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Ah see now I remember. It is a book I have but haven't yet read; only browsed the first few chapters. The book I am thinking of is Poul Anderson's Star Ways; the first book in his Psychotechnic League series. The star traders are called Nomads. Here's the blurb:

"'FIVE OF OUR WORLDS ARE MISSING!"

That was the essence of the report that shocked the galactic Nomads at their annual meeting. For each of the five mighty star-ships reported vanished was a world of its own-a man-made, self-sustaining city-state housing thousands of people.

The Nomads themselves were an unplanned by product of man's conquest of the stars. They were the gypsies of the distant future, the restless rovers of outer space. But to Joachim of the Peregrine they represented a way of life that was to be dearly defended.

So it fell to him to make his own world-ship the bait in a cosmic trap set to catch the galaxy's unknown foe men!
Sadly I have to say the cover does not resemble the one you describe.
 

Parson

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Vertigo: I'm not going to be as helpful, but I remember a story similar, but not the same as above. In this story the traders serve as a back drop for the story of a boy who was kidnapped by slavers. He is bought by a beggar (who turns out to be a high level spy in deep cover,) the beggar has connections with the clans of traders and when he dies he uses them to get his now "adopted" son off planet. He becomes a pawn in a power struggle among the traders, but he winds up in the space navy...--- I remember more, but if this isn't what's being looked for I have no need to strain my brain.
 

K. Riehl

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Parson- The book you are describing sounds to me like Citizen of the Galaxy by Heinlein

thatmtnman-
Norton had a series called Time Traders but it is nothing like the storyline that you describe.

Poul Anderson had a collection Trader to the Stars which are Nicholas Nan Rijn adventure stories about a mercenary trader.

Was the book UK or US version? Hardcover or paperback? I have several US books from the 50's/60's with a figure in front of a starship. I can check through them if I can get the search narrowed down a little.
 

Parson

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K. Riehl -- absolutely correct. "Citizen of the Galaxy" is exactly what that book was. I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that the book is over 60 years old. I read it 50 years ago or more. I'm tempted to read it again. I wonder if it still stands up as a cracking good yarn, the way I remember it.
 
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