Updates: Recent Science Fiction Acquisitions No. CXXIX (Platt + Smith + Anthologies)

I bought these a while back with Admiral Ironbombs at Battered, Tattered,  Yellowed, and Creased at the best used SF store I’ve encountered in the United States—Dawn Treader Books in Ann Arbor, MI (if you are ever in Michigan it’s worth the trip).  I’m glad I don’t live there else I would have no money.  I also discovered that Admiral Ironbombs doesn’t actually buy books that are battered and tattered—I do.  I guess he’s more of a “collector” than me.  Haha.

Enjoy some nice covers!

Has anyone read the work of Evelyn E. Smith?


1. Best SF: 1970, ed. Harry Harrison and Brian W. Aldiss (1971)


(Paul Lehr’s cover for the 1971 edition)

From the back cover: “BEST SF: 1970—THE CREAM OF THE CROP. Selected from sources all over the world, some as familiar to the SF field as Galaxy and Fantasy and Science Fiction, others as unexpected as New American Review, some the very best SF stories published in 1970—in any language.  For here are stories from Russia, from Poland, and from Czechoslovakia, as well as from Britain and the United States.

Slawomir Mrozek, Gleb Anfilov, Josef Nesvadba, Alvin Greenberg, Robin Scott Wilson, Jerry Farber, Robert Silverberg, Naomi Mitchison, Hayden Howard, Robert Coover, William Earls, Thomas M. Disch, Gene Wolfe, Kriss neville and K. M. O’Donnell combine to make this the most varied and successful of this unique series of annual anthologies.

2. Garbage World, Charles Platt (1967)


(Jeff Jones’ cover for the 1973 edition)

From the back cover from an earlier edition: “Kopra is a small asteroid, coated with unimaginable fifth in all shapes and forms.  Its inhabitants, too, are a dirty lot, clothed in soiled rags, underfed and hungry.  The garbage dump of the United Asteroid Belt Pleasure Worlds Federation, Kopra’s sole function is to receive specially package waste materials from its sister asteroids.  Carefully avoided by Off-Worlders for centuries—the stench alone is enough to discourage anyone—Kopra suddenly becomes the object of extraordinary interest to Off-World government officials.  And from the moment they cautiously set foot on the asteroid, they are plummeted into an adventure as bizarre as it is exciting—filled with danger and plenty of unexpected surprises…”

3. Best SF Stories From New Worlds, ed. Michael Moorcock (1965)


(Uncredited cover for the 1967 edition)

From the inside flap of a later edition: “DIP INTO THE FUTURE WITH THESE UNUSUAL SF CONCEPTS: Some have said that humanoids may be living undetected amongst us.  Has it ever occurred to you that we may be the humanoids amongst them?  “The Small Betrayal Detail” by Brian W. Aldiss

Space-traveling man may make over alien worlds to his own image.  But to whose image was man made?  And was it worth the effort? “The Keys to to December” by Roger Zelazny.

‘If it were a Martian,’ started the man from Earth, ‘then I think I would kill us.’ “The Music Makers” by Langdon Jones.

With additional treats by J. G. Ballard, John Brunner, David L. Masson and Thomas M. Disch…”

4. Unpopular Planet, Evelyn E. Smith (1975)


(Uncredited cover for the 1975 edition)

From the back cover: “VIOLENCE was the most vile and unpardonable act on earth… SEX for procreation was forbidden without proper classification… Nicholas Piggot knew the laws and abided by them—except when he drank.  That’s when he got in trouble and saw blue dragons.  And one night, caught between the consequences of violent action and the benevolence of his own blue dragons, he made an amazing discovery.  The blue dragons were real.  They were business beings from another dimension.  They had a whole underground community established beneath lower Manhattan and extraordinary connections throughout the universe. But most amazing of all—they had definite plans for Nicholas Piggot…”

14 thoughts on “Updates: Recent Science Fiction Acquisitions No. CXXIX (Platt + Smith + Anthologies)

  1. Haha, I buy a lot of books for the collection, but I buy even more just to read and then give away/donate… And those are usually from library sales or thrift stores and in terrible shape. You should see some of the battered books I’ve picked up this year, including one from your friend Dr. Greenfield… 😉

    • I don’t seem to live in an area with a big SF readership. So, garage sales and library sales yield little besides newer paperbacks… Thus most of what I acquire is online or used book stores on my travels.

  2. Nice haul.

    I do like that Best SF series. The listed Alvin Greenberg taught at my alma mater when I was there (never took a class from him though). I aided, to a very small extent, one of Greenberg’s fellow professors in doing a Greenberg bibliography. (He was not a sf writer and, as far as I know, didn’t like the genre.)

    And Garbage World looks like dopey fun a la Goulart.

    And that cover for Unpopular Planet …

    • This particular best of collection has numerous stories by more mainstream authors. I am curious to read his story and if I remember correctly, the Burgess story.

      I don’t think that that Garbage World will be very similar to what Goulart wrote. Platt tends to be rather vicious/disturbing in his satire… Not whimsical and funny like Goulart.

      Yeah, I was trying to decide between Unpopular Planet and the much more awful cover for Smith’s The Perfect Planet (1962)…. The lesser of two evils (in terms of cover art)?

  3. I don’t know what to say about this one.It would be a bit silly to come here though to tell you that!

    That Paul Lehr was a book cover artist extraordinary.It’s mesmerising.I suppose those that picked up his books from the shelves couldn’t have taken their eyes away from them.I hope though that his excellent stuff has more meaning than commercial venture.

  4. “Garbage Planet” has now been added to the “buy” list. Also, really tickled by the banter re: crusty & tattered purchases. Imagine some display gallery among us of “our best” finds…..

  5. The Evelyn Smith & Charles Platt picks both look intriguing – I’ve never read anything by either of them. Fortunately both books are in stock at my local haunt, and I have in-store credit…

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