The Expendables had struck it lucky at last. After grappling with the revolting Death Worms of Kratos, the deadly Rings of Tantalus and the weirdly anachronistic military society of Zelos, their fourth mission looked an easy one. Argus was an earth-type planet with one major continent, comfortably covered with vegetation.
But that was before The Expendables encountered the deadly harpoon tree, or the low-lying plant which grasped greedily at anyone who dared to set foot on it, or the hornets that paralyzed their victims - so as to enjoy their food in peace. Worst of all the lurking horrors of Argus was the deadly hallucinogenic pollen which turned quiet Santa Maria crew members into vicious maniacs.
Edmund Cooper (1926 - 1982)
Edmund Cooper was born in Cheshire in 1926. He served in the Merchant navy towards the end of the Second World War and trained as a teacher after its end. He began to publish SF stories in 1951 and produced a considerable amount of short fiction throughout the '50s, moving on, by the end of that decade, to the novels for which he is chiefly remembered. His works displayed perhaps a bleaker view of the future than many of his contemporaries', frequently utilising post-apocalyptic settings. In addition to writing novels, Edmund Cooper reviewed science fiction for the Sunday Times from 1967 until his death in 1982.