A science fiction novel by the late Avram Davidson, pubished in 1965. The first premise is that Earth has been nearly emptied by emigration, and then forgotten; the few people remaining have no metals, because the metal was all made into space ships which left and never came back. So the population is sparse, primitive, and agricultural. Second, there is a race of aliens, the onomatopoeically named Kar-Chee, who specialize in exploiting "mined out" planets: They chew up the whole planet bit by bit, playing clever tectonics games and so forth. The inhabitants don't appreciate it, but there doesn't seem to be much they can do.

Naturally, there wouldn't be any story if somebody didn't think of something to do about the mess the aliens are making of Earth, and so somebody does. It's something cool, too.

The whole damn book is just flawless. It's a fine and rare thing to read SF by somebody who can actually write.

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