I can’t pass up Sheckley collection!
Nor can I pass up a rather unknown “discovered manuscript” type 1960s feminist dystopia by Marya Mannes. She wrote for Vogue and The New Yorker over her career….
Nor can I pass up a Sturgeon collection (perhaps I will appreciate his more radical SF short stories?)….
And finally, a best of collection by an author who might not be worth exploring, but, sometimes short stories give a better impression of an author’s capabilities than a novel-length work.
As always, thoughts/observations/comments are welcome!
1. They, Marya Mannes (1968)
(Stanley Zuckerberg’s cover for the 1970 edition) Continue reading Updates: Recent Science Fiction Acquisitions No. CLVII (Sturgeon + Sheckley + Scortia + Mannes)
(Robert Foster’s stunning cover for the 1968 edition)
2.75/5 (Collated rating: Vaguely Average)
Despite the presence of one of Robert Foster’s best covers (for more on his art: Part I, Part II), New Writings in SF 4, ed. John Carnell (1965) contains only a few glimmers of brilliance—concentrated in Keith Roberts’ short story “Sub-Lim” (1965), a dark tale of crooked people and subliminal stimuli. Isaac Asimov regurgitates something about a SF heist he scribbled on a napkin, Dan Morgan mumbles about alternate universes and tricycles, and Colin Kapp lectures on the “unusual methods of cementation of electrolysis” (54) instead of telling a Continue reading Book Review: New Writings in SF 4, ed. John Carnell (1965) (Asimov + Roberts + Tenn + Kapp + Etchison + Morgan)
Another batch of volumes from the mysterious person with the initials KWG who ditched their entire collection at the local Half Price Books.
I have rarely seen the New Writings in SF series edited by John Carnell on used bookstore shelves. But, as I am a fan of discovering new authors who might not have collected volumes of short stories, it pretty easy to justify snatching them up…. A while back I featured the covers of David Mccall Johnson, and now I have my first physical copy with his art!
More Algis Budrys… Is it my need to read the major “classics” so I can “rewrite” the canon? Certainly not out of any love for his SF (or criticism for that matter) —> see my review of The Falling Torch (1959) and my short review of Michaelmas (1976). I will probably read his short story collection I recently acquired before another one of his novels.
As always, thoughts and comments are welcome/appreciated.
1. Rogue Moon, Algis Budrys (1960)
(Richard Powers’ cover for the 1960 edition) Continue reading Updates: Recent Science Fiction Acquisitions No. CLVI (Budrys + New Writings in SF Anthologies)
(Richard Powers’ cover for the 1953 edition)
4.25/5 (Very Good)
Preliminary Note: I read the 1969 Lancer edition which was “specially revised and updated by the author.” Other than many overt references to the Vietnam War which chronologically could not have been in the original 1952 edition, I am uncertain how much was subtracted, added, or re-conceived. John Clute at SF Encyclopedia indicates that “early editions” deleted references to cannibalism. Perhaps he means the pre-1969 editions as it is horrifyingly present in this edition. I wish I read the first edition as comparisons to his contemporaries would be easier to make. Anyone who has read both versions or knows of a resource which lays out the modifications, please let me know. The idea of updating a radical 50s novel for a late 60s audience intrigues me!
The Long Loud Silence (1952, revised 1969) is a quiet novel that depends on the emotional impact of loneliness and trauma, and the desire for intrahuman connection Continue reading Book Review: The Long Loud Silence, Wilson Tucker (1952, revised 1969)
A person with the initials K.W.G ditched their entire SF collection at my local Half Price Books. So many books that the store made a new SF anthology section that did not exist a few months ago and the “vintage” SF books made up more than half the non-vintage SF section. I spent too much money. One of many future SF Acquisitions posts featuring books from the mysterious K. W. G….
A famous anthology important for showcasing UK authors in America! I’ve included the lengthy description of the collection by Ace and their position vis-à-vis New Wave SF. I find it humorous that the publisher has to defend their position!
An often praised 1950s post-apocalyptical novel by Wilson Tucker…. My 1969 edition was “rewritten” by the author–unfortunately, I have already started reading it (not sure how much it will tell me about its position in 1950s SF if it were rewritten in the 60s). Perhaps someone knows how much was changed? Admiral Ironbombs wrote a worthwhile review here.
Fred Saberhagen’s best known work.
And one of the few Frank Herbert novels I have not read…
Thoughts and comments are always welcome.
1. England Swings SF: Stories of Speculative Fiction, ed. Judith Merril (1968)
(Ron Walotsky’s cover for the 1970 edition) Continue reading Updates: Recent Science Fiction Acquisitions No. CLV (Herbert + Tucker + Saberhagen + England Swings SF anthology)
(Diane and Leo Dillon’s cover for the 1971 edition)
3.25/5 (Vaguely Good)
“I hadn’t even voted in the last election. I knew nothing about it, except Robert Colonby, how he wanted to make America strong again, how he said we ought to exert ourselves” (15).
Gordon Eklund’s first novel Eclipse of Dawn (1971) tells of a future dystopic America (the year 1988) chaffing under foreign quarantine and suffering from a major race war which results in African-Americans creating an autonomous political entity in the American South. The effects of limited nuclear war spawns a poisonous urban environment and microclimates across the state of California. A return to “Victorian morality” presents but a facade of “purity laid across a morass of fear and guilt” (94).
Robert F. Colonby sets out from his residence amidst the bombed-out remains of Disneyland, where he dines on exotic cuts of meat and “wines dated back to the glory days” Continue reading Book Review: The Eclipse of Dawn, Gordon Eklund (1971)
Over the last few months I’ve been reading more of Philip José Farmer’s 50s/60s SF — including the novelization of Night of Light (1966) [unreviewed], his deservedly famous 1968 Hugo-winning novella “Riders of the Purple Wage” (1967) [unreviewed], and the short story collection The Alley God (1962). I still hold that Strange Relations (1960) contains his most sustained and well-formed short fiction. For extensive discussion of his work, see the reviews (and their comments) I linked and for my views on his later SF more broadly — i.e. such as the 1973 novel Traitor to the Living. I rather not recap here. But, I have another one of his novels, I appear to be returning to his 70s work…
A novel with Chicago as a character over the millennia? Might as well give it a go, right?
I might snark occasionally at Bob Shaw, but, yet another one of his early novels enters my collection. Maybe the Diane and Leo Dillon cover sealed the deal rather than the probably dull contents.
And, I return to Sydney J. Van Scyoc… Her novel Assignment Nor’Dyren (1973) was one of my earliest reviews—written before the site even started—and I have no idea what I would say about it now.
1. The Stone God Awakens, Philip José Farmer (1970)
(J.H. Breslow’s cover for the 1973 edition) Continue reading Updates: Recent Science Fiction Acquisitions No. CLIV (Farmer + Shaw + Van Scyoc + Monteleone)