Greylorn is a science fiction novella by American author Keith Laumer.
Earth is threatened with destruction by a deadly alien plague. The planet’s only hope: Get help from the long-lost Omega Colony, somewhere in space.
The fate of the Earth is in the hands of Lieutenant Commander Greylorn in charge of the search for Omega, and every decision he will make during Man’s first contact with an alien race...
So, Commander Greylorn has a problem. No, actually he has two of them. It's not enough that the remaining residents of Earth have pinned their last hope of salvation on him and his mission. He has to find a colony that presumedly was established at an unknown star two centuries before and beg their help. But first, he has the small matter of a mutiny on board his starship, and people are trying to kill him!
Written in an era when radios used vacuum tubes, the scientific component of the story is quaint and dated. But Laumer makes the centerpiece of his tale the retelling of how, four years out on the voyage, his crew decides it wants to give up and go home when it meets an alien race... that apparently breeds humans in captivity as food animals!
Beating the aliens, shanghaiing the crew, finding the colony and saving Mother Earth - just the ingredients for a rattling good yarn!
Greylorn was Laumers first published science fiction novella and appeared in Amazing Magazine in April 1959.
John Keith Laumer (1925-1993) was an American science fiction author. Prior to becoming a full-time writer, he was an officer in the United States Air Force and a diplomat in the United States Foreign Service.
Keith Laumer is known for the Bolo and Retief stories. The Bolo stories chronicle the evolution of super tanks that eventually become self-aware through the constant improvement resulting from centuries of intermittent warfare against various alien races. The Retief stories deals with the adventures of a cynical spacefaring diplomat who constantly has to overcome the red-tape-infused failures of people with names like Ambassador Grossblunder. The Retief stories were greatly influenced by Laumer's earlier career in the US Foreign Service.