Publisher: Ace Books
Meet Podkayne Fries, a thoroughly Martian Ms. who thinks that Earth is not really fit for habitation and that humanity evolved on the now-exploded Fifth Planet. Poddy has one goal in life: to be the first female starship captain. She has her strategy all scoped out, and with her determination, looks and I.Q. she’ll get there, never you doubt!
But all work and no play would make Poddy a Dull Girl, so when a chance comes her way to travel to distant Earth via Venus with her elderly uncle, Poddy jumps at it, even if it does mean having her loathsome little brother along for the trip: Travel, Adventure, the chance to cuddle up (in a nice way) with real spaceship officers and ruthlessly pump their brains—she’ll have it all!
What Poddy doesn’t know is that “Unca Tom” is more than her warmly supportive relative: he is also the Ambassador Plenipotentiary from Mars to the Three-Planets Conference (traveling not quite incognito enough) and that certain parties will stop at nothing to gain control of his vote—including kidnapping and doing terrible things to sweetly innocent Poddy Fries…