I’ve read only one Ron Goulart story in Universe 1 (1971), ed. Terry Carr. It was marginally funny but slight. I assume his novels are similar. This is supposedly one of his best… It has an intriguing Diane and Leo Dillon cover.
New Worlds Anthologies? Answer: always yes!
Gary K. Wolf, not Gene Wolfe or the SF scholar Gary K. Wolfe in case anyone is confused… Gary K. Wolf remains best known for the Roger Rabbit sequence of novels (Who Censored Roger Rabbit? (1981) and 1991’s Who P-P-Plugged Roger Rabbit?). He started his writing career with three SF novels for Doubleday—Killerbowl (1975), A Generation Removed (1977), and The Resurrectionist (1979). I look forward to exploring his work.
And one of the few PKD novels I do not own (I might be missing four or five others). Not supposedly one of his best books, but his brand of surrealism is always fun. It’s for my collection rather than to read anytime soon. I’m more in a PKD’s early short stories mood!
All images are scans from my own collection (click image to zoom).
As always, thoughts/comments are welcome.
1. After Things Fell Apart, Ron Goulart (1970)
(Diane and Leo Dillon’s cover for the 1970 edition)
From the inside flap: “The time is a few decades from now; the place is what used to be the United States, now disrupted by internal factionalism as well as a short-lived foreign invasion.
Out of this chaotic background Ron Goulart has produced a swift-moving, witty and constantly delightful novel, a story of a future odyssey through:
- the Nixon Institute, where aging former rock stars reminisce about the days when they still had hair;
- the wife-open sin-town of San Rafael , run by the Amateur Mafia (no Italians allowed);
- Vienna West, a detailed replica of Sigmund Freud’s 19th Century city where psychiatric patients live and abreact together;
- the Monterey Mechanical Jazz Festival, featuring the music of pinball machines, jack hammers, and laundromat washers…
All this plus a dozen or two of the oddest characters you’re ever likely to meet. AFTER THINGS FELL APART is a very funny book.”
2. New Worlds Quarterly, 3, ed. Michael Moorcock (1972)
(Richard Powers’ cover for the 1972 edition)
From the back cover: “NEW WORLDS QUARTERLY #3. This, the third issue, in quarterly form, of the world-famous British SF magazine New Worlds maintains the exactly—and enormously satisfying—standards of that publication and of the two previous issues.
Edited and introduced by MICHAEL MOORCOCK, this edition contains stories and articles by: Joyce Churchill, Jack M. Dann, Alistair Bevan, Charles Platt, Brian W. Aldiss, John Sladek, Pamela Sargent, Christopher Priest, Thomas M. Disch, George Zebrowski, Laurence James, Hilary Bailey, Keith Roberts, M. John Harrison.”
3. The Resurrectionist, Gary K. Wolf (1979) (MY REVIEW)
(Margo Herr’s cover for the 1979 edition)
From the inside flap: “In the near future, travelers whisk around the world instantly by bridge, a method of transportation similar to the Star Trek transporter system. In bridge travel, people are electronically disassembled, transmitted through wires, and reassembled at their destinations. It’s convenient, quick, and totally save—or so the Bridge Authorities assures us. Then a famous Russian ballerina disappears in transit somewhere in the wires. The Bridge Authority puts in a frantic call to its highly paid troubleshooter, Saul Lukas. His task—find her and get her out. Soon. Before the powerful energy coursing through the wires disrupts her so badly she can never come out, at least not in normal human form. Aided by a special maintenance crew able to travel the wires without losing physical abilities, Saul combs the line.
He finds no trace of the missing girl. To improve the odds of locating her, Saul asks the Bridge Authority to temporarily suspend service. The Bridge Authority’s president, Michele Warren, flatly refuses. Why? What possible reason could the Bridge Authority have for deciding to condemn this innocent firl to death? As the ballerina’s life slowly ticks away inside the wires, and Saul races to unravel the mustery of her disappearance, the answer gradually comes to light. Bring this girl out, and the whole nature of civilization could change drastically for the better… or the worse. Is one life worth such a risk? The final decision rests ultimately on Saul’s unwilling shoulders.”
(Peter Jones’ cover for the 1978 edition)
From the back cover: “THE ULTIMATE WEAPON. The terrifying arms race roared on. Daily, East and West produced more dreadful weaponry. And, daily, yesterday’s weapons were turned into toys, souvenirs, egg beaters, furniture… and never, never used as weapons. Which was just as well, since they wouldn’t have worked.
It may have looked crazy, but it kept the 21st Century world peaceful and its population securely under the domination of the monstrous, ubiquitous security agencies.
But then the Sirius Slavers arrived from outer space. Whole cities began to disappear. The world was defenceless—and the race for an Ultimate Weapon for survival was on, for real this time. The outcome meant life or death for Earth. and it lay in the hands of two misfit weapons ‘fashion designers’, a demented comic book artist and a highly unlikely toymaker from the wrong side of time…”