A Whole Lotta Books!

New Arrivals, February 28 – March 13, 2011

Two weeks worth this time, a lot of stuff and some real goodies. Emphasis on action, adventure, science fiction and pulp reprints, with a western by James Reasoner is mixed in for extra seasoning. I don’t expect much, if any next week, so savor these. On with the show…

The Collected Short Works of Poul Anderson, Volume 4: Admiralty by Poul Anderson [NESFA Press 2011 hardcover, new] – science fiction – this is the fourth volume in NESFA’s collecting the entire short works of Anderson and I couldn’t be happier to have it in hand! These beautiful, well edited volumes are a treasure for anyone who likes – or loves – the works by this masterful and highly influential science fiction writer.

Battle in the Dawn by Manly Wade Wellman [Planet Stories 2011 trade paper, new] – pulp adventure story collection – This is the latest offering from Planet Stories I have a subscription and so get all the books), this one featuring Hok, “humanity’s first hero”. The forst story appeared in Amazing Stories in 1939 and was followed by the remainder of these tales in 1940-1942. This is the first collection of them all.

Engineering Infinity, edited by Jonathan Strahan [Solaris Books 2011 mass market paperback, originally published in the UK in 2010, new] – science fiction short story collection – The premise for this collection is this: “The Universe shifts and changes: suddenly you understand, you get it, and are filled with wonder. That moment of understanding drives the greatest of science fiction stories and lies at the heart of this collection”. How could I resist that, plus Strahan is an excellent editor of collections like this.

To The Galactic Rim by A. Bertram Chandler [Baen 2011 trade paper, new] – science fiction omnibus – Thanks to George Kelley for alerting me to this omnibus edition from Baen. Chandler wrote a lot of fast, fun, space opera, what we now call old fashioned and here in the 21st Century it is, but that’s no criticism. Following his The Rim of Space, this is the beginning of the John Grimes Saga and includes 4 novels: The Road to the Rim, To Prime the Pump, The Hard Way Up and The Broken Cycle. Another omnibus continuing the Grimes saga is forthcoming, the publisher tells us.

Red Panda #1: The Crime Cabal by Gregg Taylor [Autogyro 2009 trade paper, new] – adventure hero fiction, neo-pulp – Thanks go to the fine ALL PULP blog for alerting me to these, the third of which was nominated for best cover of 2010. These are what I call neo-pulp stories, with a touch of humor and a good bit of campiness but based on the kind of thing you might have found in a pulp in 1939, or on the radio in 1949.

Red Panda #2: The Mind Master by Gregg Taylor [Autogyro 2009 trade paper, new] – adventure hero fiction, neo-pulp - Thanks go to the fine ALL PULP blog for alerting me to these, the third of which was nominated for best cover of 2010. These are what I call neo-pulp stories, with a touch of humor and a good bit of campiness but based on the kind of thing you might have found in a pulp in 1939, or on the radio in 1949.

Red Panda #3: The Android Assassins by Gregg Taylor [Autogyro 2010 trade paper, new] – adventure hero fiction, neo-pulp - Thanks go to the fine ALL PULP blog for alerting me to these, the third of which was nominated for best cover of 2010. These are what I call neo-pulp stories, with a touch of humor and a good bit of campiness but based on the kind of thing you might have found in a pulp in 1939, or on the radio in 1949.

Redemption, Kansas by James Reasoner [Berkley Books, 2011 mass market paperback, new] – western – When I saw on the author’s blog HERE that this was out I got a copy right away. I don’t read a lot of westerns, but I’m eager to read this one.

In a discussion about pulp heroes with my friend and fine author Evan Lewis, he said that The Spider may be his favorite. That was good enough for me, so I started picking up the Spider Doubles published by Girasol Collectibles. As of the issue above, there are 18 doubles, with stories selected by Neil Mechem, who pretty much is Girasol. The stores aren’t in the order they were published, instead being of Neil’s own choosing which is fine with me. They have the original text (spelling corrected) and illustrations. So when I decided to read a few Shadow stories, I went for the same idea. These are published by Nostalgia Ventures. The first few of these from NV are OP, but I got these, Shadow Doubles just for fun. Each one has to original novels, again with spelling errors corrected and the original illustrations. Note: I show the back cover which has both original covers.

Shadow Double #4 – The Murder Muse and The Hydra - by Walter Gibson as by Maxwell Grant – [Nostalgia Ventures 2007 oversized trade paper, new - pulp fiction, new]

Shadow Double #6 – The Shadow’s Justice and The Broken Napoleons - by Walter Gibson as by Maxwell Grant – [Nostalgia Ventures 2007 oversized trade paper, new - pulp fiction, new]

Shadow Double # 7 – The Cobra and The Third Shadow - by Walter Gibson as by Maxwell Grant – [Nostalgia Ventures 2007 oversized trade paper, new - pulp fiction, new]

Shadow Double # 8 – The London Crimes and Castle of Doom - by Walter Gibson as by Maxwell Grant – [Nostalgia Ventures 2007 oversized trade paper, new - pulp fiction, new]

The Spider Double # 18 – The Spider and the Slaves of Hell and Zara – Master of Murder! by Walter Gibson as by Grant Stockbridge – [Girasol Collectables, 2011 oversized trade paper, new]

The New England Science Fiction Association, in addition to holding the fine Boskone SF convention each year, publishes outstanding hardcover collections of the works of top-flight authors. I have long been a fan of their books and regularly check the website HERE for new publications. I’ve been tempted by the six volumes in their Zelanzy Project, and finally bought them. Here is the direct quote from the NESFA website (all material (c) NESFA):

“Contents
These six hardcover volumes contain all of Roger Zelazny’s short fiction and poetry that we could find, however obscurely published, along with a number of unpublished works retrieved from Zelazny’s archived papers. We also included shorter early versions of several novels, two novel excerpts and a few of Zelazny’s articles on topics of interest to him.
There are numerous other novel excerpts (from Creatures of Light and Darkness, Lord of Light, Nine Princes in Amber, Madwand, etc.) published independently as short works that we did not include. We also did not include the many novel serializations (Jack of Shadows, Sign of the Unicorn, etc.)

The only piece of fiction we know of but could not find is an unpublished Zelazny story named “Checkup”, which was written in 1975 for a special “children’s future” issue of a UNICEF quarterly publication. We have records of it being paid for, but no trace of the story has surfaced.

Zelazny published over 150 non-fiction pieces, ranging from short introductions to other authors’ books to lengthier essays that addressed the business and art of creative writing. He also recorded over 60 interviews. Including all of these essays and interviews would have taken up several volumes on their own and so we chose a select few to republish. Many of the remaining essays and interviews were quoted from in the “A Word from Zelazny” sections or in the literary biography, ” ‘…And Call Me Roger’: The Literary Life of Roger Zelazny.”

Each volume represents an era in Zelazny’s fiction writing. His poetry, mostly written early in his career, is intentionally scattered throughout the six volumes.

Range of publication dates for fiction in each volume:
1: 1954 through 1965
2: 1964 through 1967
3: 1967 through 1977
4: 1978 through 1981 plus the three stories from My Name is Legion from 1969, 1973, and 1975, kept together and pulled forward into V4 where they would fit.
5: 1981 through 1990 plus one Dilvish story from 1979
6: 1992 through 1996 plus one Wild Cards story from 1988

The works of fiction within each volume are in a semi-chronological order, generally by publication date. We first laid them out in strict chronological order, then moved a few based on theme (to combine or separate items with a similar theme or background), length (to keep the volumes nearly the same size) and research that told us the story had been written far earlier than published. Previously unpublished works (of which we include more than 20, all fairly short), were inserted near other works written at the same time.

Introductions and Essays
We commissioned or reprinted introductions and essays from family, friends and writers who were fans of Roger Zelazny’s work. They include the first general introduction by Robert Silverberg and introductions by Carl Yoke, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Walter Jon Williams, Neil Gaiman, David G. Hartwell, Joe Haldeman, Steven Brust, Melinda Snodgrass, George R. R. Martin, Jane Lindskold, Gerald Hausman and Gardner Dozois. We also included two memoria, one by George R. R. Martin and one by Trent Zelazny.

Chris Kovacs, one of the editors of the Zelazny collection, wrote a literary biography, ” ‘…And Call Me Roger’: The Literary Life of Roger Zelazny”, that is split into six parts and spread among the volumes.

Jackets
The books are packaged so the jacket spines form a single image, each spine a subset of a spectacular painting created by Michael Whelan for this project. If the six books are placed on a shelf in order, with the back cover of volume 1 open and the front cover of volume 6 open, the two open covers with the six spines between display Whelan’s entire painting.”

That’s it, folks!

About Richard

he's the guy who's blog you're reading
This entry was posted in Adventure, books, fantasy, reading, science fiction and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to A Whole Lotta Books!

  1. Evan Lewis says:

    Wow. Time to call that carpenter back. Maybe you should just hire him full time until the house is wall-t0-wall bookshelves.

  2. Todd Mason says:

    Indeed, Rick, that’s Enough for any given week (though of course it’s never enough). The one I didn’t know about that I might seek out most quickly is the Wellman, though I suspect the Zelazny has all or just about all his best work in it. (I’ve Never been one to value novels ahead of shorter work, particularly when someone, like RZ, so consistently does better work in short forms).

  3. Todd Mason says:

    The biggest problem, nearly the only problem, with the NESFA books in the past has been the proofreading…I certainly hope that’s improved.

  4. Jeff Meyerson says:

    Nice list. Way to stimulate the economy!

    You and George convinced me to give Chandler a try.

  5. Wow! Christmas in March! That is quite a haul of goodies. I have some of those Shadow volumes. I may have to buy a few of the Spiders. I have the Wellman volume on order.

    Jeff: It you love space opera, you’ll love Chandler’s series about Grimes and the Rim.

  6. Jeff Meyerson says:

    I ordered the first one so will check it out, George.

  7. Chris says:

    I have the Wellman book from Planet Stories headed my way as well — eager to get it. And the Reasoner book is waiting on my Nook; hopefully will get to it before too long!

  8. Nice haul. The chandler and Anderson look good. I have the first twenty-five or so of the Shadow doubles, but none of the Spiders(I do have a number of earlier reprints though). I guess I need to pick up some. The trick will be finding the time to read them(the eternal problem for folks like us).

  9. Richard says:

    Thanks for your comments, everyone. I’m a little – OK, a lot – broken up just now, Wife just took our cat Charlotte to the vet to have her put down, she has succumbed to kidney failure. See above post. I’ll get back to this topic later.

  10. Carl V. says:

    One of the best New Arrivals yet as far as gorgeous, mouth-watering covers and books that look interesting to read. Wow! Love those Michael Whelan covers and the spine is way cool. What a cool idea.

  11. merlin513 says:

    The Shadow! Love ‘em!

  12. Stan says:

    The first Ace double I ever bought was a Chandler/Simak. I think the title was something like “To the Galactic Rim”? I remember the Simak was I think “The Trouble with Tycho”. Nasty stuff when you are something like 10 – boy was I hooked.

  13. Richard says:

    Stan – I kinda remember “The Trouble With Tyco, but I couldn’t tell you what edition or where I read it, just that it was fun. The Chandler could have been “The Road to the Rim, it was half of Ace H-29 you can find the cover here: http://www.bertramchandler.com/novels/theroadtotherim.aspx
    Is that it? And yes, I was hooked too.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s