1. John Varley’s fantastic mind trapped in a computer after an accident while a lion in an underground Mars safari park short story “Overdrawn at the Memory Bank” (1977) inspired me to pick a collection of his late 70s and early 80s short stories—including the Nebula and Hugo-nominated “Beatnik Bayou” (1980) and the Hugo-nominated “The Barbie Murders” (1979).
2. Colin Greenland’s oblique Daybreak on a Different Mountain (1984) is my type of fantasy—sculpted landscapes, a Ballard-inspired entropy-filled world, surreal sequences…. I picked up volume two in the loose Daybreak sequence.
3. I am slowly working through Marta Randall’s novels–see my favorable reviews of Islands (1976) and A City in the North (1976)–and, despite the awful cover, snagged the first volume in her Kennerin Saga sequence.
4. An finally, a complete unknown quantity…. My friend 2theD (who, unfortunately, has long retired his blog) described it as impossible to paraphrase, nebulous, linguistically inspired….
Let me know what books/covers intrigue you. Which have you read? Disliked? Enjoyed?
1. The Barbie Murders, John Varley (1980)
(David Plourde’s cover for the 1980 edition) Continue reading
(Richard Corben’s cover for the 1977 edition)
4.25/5 (collated rating: Very Good)
The 1977 Annual World’s Best SF, ed. Donald A. Wolheim and Arthur S. Saha (1977) is a glorious anthology of SF published from the year before containing rousing works by the established masters (Isaac Asimov and Brian W. Aldiss), philosophical gems from New Wave icons (Barrington J. Bayley), and gritty and disturbing commentaries on masculinity by the newer voices (James Tiptree, Jr.). While Richard Cowper and Lester del Rey misfire, the overall quality is high for a large Continue reading
1. Ursula K. Le Guin’s novella, The Word for World is Forest, first appeared in Harlan Ellison’s Again, Dangerous Visions (1972) anthology before a stand-alone publication. I seem to remember reading it as a kid…. But…. the memories are vague.
2. Cordwainer Smith and I have never really seen eye to eye (I wanted to rhyme). I’m all for acquiring more of his collections just in case!
3. From Wikipedia: “H. G. Wells lauded [M. P. Shiel’s] The Purple Cloud as ‘brilliant’ and H. P. Lovecraft later praised the novel as exemplary weird fiction, ‘delivered with a skill and artistry falling little short of actual majesty.'”
The Richard Powers cover is one of his best of the 60s.
4. John Varley, another author whom I’ve yet to read despite owning numerous of his collections and novels…. Millennium (1983) seems, well, suspicious? Time travel, airplanes, dystopic futures, love affairs across time. We shall see!
…and it was turned into a film in 1989.
Note: the images are hi-res scans. Click to enlarge.
As always, comments and tangents are welcome!
1. The Word for World is Forest, Ursula K. Le Guin (anthology publication 1972) (MY REVIEW)
(Richard Powers’ cover for the 1976 edition) Continue reading
A nice range of SF authors/works! A Michael Bishop collection containing many of his most famous 70s short stories for my upcoming guest post series…. And a SF juvenile written by Phyllis Maclennan with an intriguing premise (although, as always, I’m very dubious about juveniles in general). John Varley’s famous novel Titan (1979) seems like a fascinating take on the Big Dumb Object trope. And finally a 50s adventure by the indomitable Arthur C. Clarke.
I am most intrigued by the Varley’s Titan and Bishop’s Blooded on Arachne.
Some of the covers are cringe inducing.
1. Titan, John Varley (1979)
(Ron Waltosky’s cover for the 1979 edition) Continue reading
With the sole novel of his I’ve read, What Entropy Means to Me (1972), George Alec Effinger has entered the pantheon of my favorite authors—the novel is that brilliant. So, with a birthday gift card from my sister I procured a copy of Irrational Numbers (1975), a collection of short fiction. Will read soon….
I know very little about John Varley’s work. I have a copy of his collection The Persistence of Vision (1978) but had no idea that his first novel, The Ophiuchi Hotline (1977) was as well known as the Goodreads ratings make it out to be (1,476 votes!). I am positive that Boris Vallejo’s horrid cover prevented me from even considering the novel in the past.
More Wilhelm! (Juniper Time)
More Blish! (Midsummer Century)
All first edition hardbacks for a mere $1-2 each.
1. The Ophiuchi Hotline, John Varley (1977)
(Boris Vallejo’s cover for the 1977 edition) Continue reading