(Back cover detail for the 1959 edition of E. Everett Evans’ Man of Many Minds)
2. Of the bunch, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro’s Hyacinths (1983) appeals the most. I’m a sucker for SF stories about the dream state—i.e. Roger Zelazny’s The Dream Master (1966)—and commentaries on media and advertising. And of course, I’m fascinated Philip K. Dick’s dystopian formulations of the future of advertising which Hyacinths seems to expand on…..
I’ve previously reviewed Yarbro’s terrifying post-apocalyptic novel False Dawn (1978)
3. An alternate history where Native Americans defeat the colonizers? Intrigued but suspect it’s on the pulpy side of things. I wish I could find out more about Ron Montana. Was he of Native American descent? His first SF publication, “We the People” (1974), appeared in Craig Strete’s fanzine Red Planet Earth. Here’s his publication listing. Unfortunately, I assume he’s best known for his later copyright conflict with Craig Strete.
4. And finally, this one was hiding in a pile… I can’t remember how long I’ve had it or why I purchased it. Not an author I know and SF encyclopedia isn’t more than lukewarm in its assessment.
Let me know what books/covers intrigue you. Which have you read? Disliked? Enjoyed?
1. Icerigger, Alan Dean Foster (1974)
(Tim White’s art for the 1976 UK edition reused for the 1978 US edition)
From the back cover: “FROZEN ASSETS. Ethan Fortune was a simple salesman—knowledgeable and civilized… a sophisticated traveler between many worlds. But he had certainly never though of himself as a hero.
Skua September, on the other hand, never thought of himself as anything else.
A matched pair, if there was one!
When the two of them were suddenly stranded on a deadly frozen world. Ethan Fortune incredibly found himself cast in the role of Leader.
And he didn’t find that at all amusing…”
2. Hyacinths, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro (1983)
(Al Nagy’s cover for the 1st edition)
From the inside flap: “In a future of rabid banality mankind is numb to all but the most potent stimuli. Television, books, theater, even sen-surround films fail to sate the masses’ hunger for entertainment. They want more—they want dreams. Not the fleeting memory of their own but the all-engulfing experience of the professionally shaped dreams fed them by Dreamwebs.
Originally developed as a took to aid psychiatry’s understanding of psychotic behavior, Dreamwebs Inc. quickly recognized the potential of marketing dream terminals. Later the government also saw potential. Not only did the Dreams generate tax revenues, they also seemed uniquely suited to carrying subliminal messages to an increasingly archaic populace.
Not matter that those who supply the dreams were driven to madness and burnout. No matter that the megalithic and highly competitive commercial dream networks, not satisfied with huge profits and a mass captive audience, supply outlawed psychotic and violent dreams on the black market. Everyone wants to keep the status quo.
Only one man bothers to care… and only one man recognized the dangers. Even though he realizes that he may be trying to change the inevitable…”
3. The Sign of the Thunderbird, Ron Montana (1977)
(Uncredited cover for the 1st edition)
From the back cover: “FINDING HELL IN A HOLOCAUST…
…Captain Eason and Private Fox are blown from present time and space and hurled into the past. Trading plutonium bombs for bows and arrows, the two fight their own army to lead an Indian uprising. They know the violence of yesteryear has led to an annihilation of the future and learn blood spilt for peace is blood spilt in vain. But they battle against history for justice and survival, knowing they can never win!”
4. Man of Many Minds, E. Everett Evans (1953)
(Gray Morrow’s cover for the 1968 edition)
From the back cover: “GALAXY IN DANGER! Somewhere, somehow, the first moves have been made—the pattern is beginning to emerge. Someone—or something—is on the way to supreme power over all the planets held by Man.
And the Interstellar Corps is helpless to meet the threat—no normal man can hope to penetrate the conspiracy.
But—the Corps has a man who isn’t normal, a man with a very strange weapon… his mind.
Exciting! Strange! Extraordinary! One of the most unusual science fiction adventures ever published.”
For book reviews consult the INDEX
For cover art posts consult the INDEX