(Inside illustration by Vincent Di Fate for the 1973 edition of The Orchid Cage (1961), Herbert W. Franke)
Part II of my SF acquisitions from Dawn Treader Books in Ann Arbor, MI– Part I. In my attempt to acquire more foreign SF (still haven’t managed to read that much of it—but the mood will strike eventually), I found a nice copy with a wonderful interior illustration and cover by Vincent Di Fate of one of Herbert W. Franke’s novels.
Also, another Ian Watson novel—I’ve read the Jonah Kit (1975) but never got around to reviewing it as well as his collection (must read for fans of 70s SF) The Very Slow Time Machine (1979). Jesse over at Speculiction raves about his other work [see Watson reviews via Jesse’s INDEX].
A famous anthology edited by Pamela Sargent—I’ve read a large portion of the stories in other formats, but, I’m glad to finally have a copy.
The risk purchase is a novel by Gordon Eklund—he published so many, and apparently was sort of popular, so, I might as well give one a shot. I do not have high hopes.
As always, your comments/thoughts are welcome!
1.Women of Wonder, ed. Pamela Sargent (1974)
(Charles Shields’ cover for the 1974 edition)
From the back cover: “WOMEN OF WONDER. These twelve first-class stories by women writers explore changing sex roles in the time-honored male preserve of science fiction.” [story list — here if you are curious].
2. The Gardens of Delight, Ian Watson (1980)
(Hieronymus Bosch’s cover for the 1982 edition)
From the back cover: “TRAPPED IN EDEN! The Starship Schiaparelli—journeying to a distant mysterious planet in search of a colony founded by an earlier ship—was suddenly immobilized by a powerful unseen force and forced down upon a paradisiacal landscape, strange yet strangely familiar. Only one among the Schiaparelli’s crew—psychologist Sean Athlone—realizes that its luxurious fruits, its colorful birds, its naked celebrating people are a replica of one of Earth’s masterpieces—The Garden of Earthly Delights. Who created it? And why? And where is the leader of this enchanted group—the enigmatic Knossos? Now Athlone and two women of his crew must search this paradise for its residing genius—and with Heaven near at hand, can Hell be far behind?”
3. The Orchid Cage, Herbert W. Franke (1961, English trans., 1973)
(Vincent Di Fate’s cover for the 1973 edition)
From the back cover: “On a distant planet, not too different from Earth, there stands a mechanized city with no visible inhabitants. Obviously of a highly developed civilization, the question is who built it, where are they, and what can humans learn from them? Two teams of explorers enter into a competition to find the answers. There are no holds barred—almost anything goes to win the contest. But the city is capable of meeting trickery with trickery, violence with violence—and murder with justice.
Such is the premise of THE ORCHID CAGE—one of the most discussed science fiction novels of modern Europe, translated into many languages, and now first brought to you in English. Of its author, a leading SF expert states: “The impact of his work is very similar to that of Philip K. Dick, with the difference that Franke’s books are firmly based on science.”
4. The Eclipse of Dawn, Gordon Eklund (1971)
(Diane and Leo Dillon’s cover for the 1971 edition)
From the back cover: “THE JUPITER PLATFORM. If you think political campaigns are getting stranger and stranger, consider the Presidential campaign of 1988: When the United States has virtually collapsed after civil war and a foreign embargo; When Washington D.C. lies in ruins and the White House is in California; And when Robert Colonby, Presidential candidate, promises to rebuild the nation with help from an awesome, godlike race of beings on Jupiter.
THE ECLIPSE OF DAWN is an inventive, fast-paced novel about this startling campaign… a behind-the-scenes look at one of our possible futures.”