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Leiber, Fritz
book-date: 1966
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Richard Powers
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The Night of the Wolf, a rare collection of stories by Fritz Leiber. These originally appeared from 1944 to 1962, in Galaxy, Amazing (2), Astounding - all with different titles (see review below.) The second and fourth novelets do not appear in any other Leiber collection.

The Lone Wolf
The Wolf Pair
Crazy Wolf
The Wolf Pack

For plot summaries, I quote P. Schuyler Miller's review in Analog (June 1967):
"Three novelettes and a short story (the latter published here in 1944 as "Sanity," the others in various magazines, under other names, between 1950 and 1962) are given a linking theme and made part of the chronicle of the League of Sanity. It really wasn't necessary, and I liked the author's original titles better.

"The Lone Wolf" (originally "The Creature from Cleveland Depths" in Galaxy) opens the book. It shows us a near future America in which the cities have gone underground, leaving a few mavericks and misfits on the surface. Gusterson, one of the latter, serves at times as an idea man for the subterranean promoters. His half-joking suggestion for a "tickler," an automatic secretary that can ride a man's shoulder and remind him of errands and appointments, is converted by not very slow degrees into an Old Man of the Sea that degrades men and women to automate biological mechanisms.

But nuclear war does come, most of the Midwest becomes a radioactive desert whose ruins are peopled by warped and mutated individualists conditioned to murder, and "The Wolf Pair (alias "The Night of the Long Knives" in [wrongly attributed to] Magazine of F&SF [actually came from Amazing]) follows three people who for circumstantial reasons do not cut each other down, and who suggest a way in which mankind may struggle back to sanity.

The promise is not fulfilled, and "Crazy Wolf" ("Sanity" when it was in Astounding twenty years ago) shows what follows as insanity becomes the norm, and the adjusted, balanced mentality of our aperations has become the psychosis of the new world. This is one of the stories that almost everybody remembers, and almost nobody can name, though most people could attribute it correctly to Fritz Leiber.

Finally, "The Wolf Pack ("Let Freedom Ring" in Amazing brings us some centuries later to an era of stability and prosperity, when the pressure of overpopulation is relieved by sending young men to slaughter each other in the name of Man. Normsi, the hero, is scheduled for death and rebels. In the end, the members of the League of Sanity are "keepers of the violent ward" of human civilization.

Every one of these stories did and can stand alone. They are black irony as only Fritz Leiber can present it, far better to my taste than the prize-winning Wanderer. Leiber has not forced the continuity, but left it to suggest itself, with the help of brief introductions. I don't think the association adds anything that wasn't in the stories in the first place."