In my youth I read Ursula Le Guin like a madman—somewhere in the intervening years I misplaced my copies of her short story collections. So, while voyaging to a nearby city (with Half Price Books) I decided to snag one—The Compass Rose (1982) contains mostly 70s short stories. Excited.
I have been presently impressed with *some* of Philip José Farmer’s work—namely, Strange Relations (1960)—-so I could not resist a “best of” collection.
I am perhaps most excited about David Gerrold’s edited collection Generation: An Anthology of Speculative Fiction (1972). Contains a wide range (and almost equal ratio of male/female authors) of fascinating stories.
I bought C. M. MacApp’s Secret of the Sunless World (1969) due to the title and the amazing Berkey cover. Now that I sat down and transcribed the back cover I rather dissuaded from picking it up anytime soon…
1. The Book of Philip José Farmer, Philip José Farmer (revised 1982, 1973)
(James Warhola’s cover for the 1982 edition)
From the back cover: “Phil Farmer’s Greatest Hits. From horror to space opera, from fantasy to visionary SF, the selections in this volume cover the entire creative spectrum of one of the greatest talents in imaginative literature. They were not only written, but personally selected and introduced by the author Leslie Fielder called ‘The greatest science fiction writer ever.'”
2. Generation: An Anthology of Speculative Fiction, ed. David Gerrold (1972)
(David Foster’s cover for 1972 edition)
From the back cover: “Here for the first time the brightest talents of the new generation of science fiction masters have been assembled to show where it’s at and where it’s heading. You are invited to take trips with Roger Deeley… Piers Anthony… James Tiptree, Jr… Ed Bryant… Chelsea Quinn Yarbro…and 20 other spellbinding story-tellers to the most far-out frontiers of the modern imagination.”
3. Secret of the Sunless World, Carroll M. Capps (i.e. C. M. MacApp) (1969)
(John Berkey’s cover for the 1969 edition)
From the back cover: “SPACE PIRATE. His name was Gondal, most feared of all the creatures in the universe. But there was one ravenous ambition he had yet to satisfy. On a distant, sunless planet lay the key to the secret of the humanoids who had strangely vanished after reigning over all space. Gondal intended to discover the secret—and become master of the galaxies. But Gondal needed one man to help him—and Earthling named Vince Cullow. Prisoner on Gondal’s spaceship, Cullow was forced to choose between robot-like submission, and a kind of torture only the twisted mind of Gondal could conceive, as they sped toward the unknown…”
4. The Compass Rose, Ursula Le Guin (1982)
(Yvonne Gilbert’s cover for the 1983 edition)
From the back cover: “The Many Points of Wonder. From dream worlds to nightmare planets, through mazes of madness to tiny time holes in space, down Pathways of Desire to a New Atlantis, THE COMPASS ROSE points the way to the wonder-filled mind-country of a remarkable writer.”