The move into my first house—with my ridiculous quantity of books—is nearly complete….
1. ….and so is my collection of 60s and 70s J. G. Ballard!
2. Currently reading this peculiar Emma Tennant vision… My third of her books — I never got around to reviewing Hotel de Dream (1976) as I grew disenchanted with the second half but thoroughly enjoyed The Crack (variant title: The Time of the Crack) (1973).
3. Not personally a huge fans of sports but enjoy when SF authors (for example Robert Sheckley, Barry N. Malzberg, and George Elec Effinger) take on future sport… A perfect topic for satirical commentary and sinister undercurrents….
4. I while ago I read and thoroughly enjoyed Wyman Guin’s short story collection Living Way Out (variant title: Beyond Bedlam) (1967). I found this in a thrift story for less than a 1$ so it ended up on my shelf.
1. Concrete Island, J. G. Ballard (1974)
(Richard Clifton-Dey’s cover for the 1976 edition) Continue reading
1) Can’t resist a beautiful Richard Powers cover even on a rather standard 60s anthology of short stories—includes Ray Bradbury, Fredric Brown, Theodore Sturgeon, Wyman Guin, Algis Budrys, etc.
Relevant reviews: Algis Budrys’ collection Budrys’ Inferno (1963) and Wyman Guin’s superb collection Living Way Out (variant title: Beyond Bedlam) (1967).
2) A SF novel by Angela Carter — enough said…
3) One of the great (and lesser read) Soviet dystopias! Can’t wait!
4) Another bargain bin find by John Boyd… with some incredibly hyperbolic cover blurbs on the back about his earlier (and lackluster) novel The Last Starship from Earth (1968).
As always, thoughts/comments are welcome!
1. Beyond, ed. Thomas A. Dardis (1963)
(Richard Powers’ cover for the 1963 edition) Continue reading
Dear readers, thank you all profusely for your comments, words of thanks, and emails over the year. It is my overarching goal to inspire you all to read more SF from the 50s-70s, dust off the boxes of your parents’ books in some forgotten closet, browse the shelves at your local used book store (or favorite online store), reflect on the often fascinating cover art…
2016 was not the most productive reading/reviewing year as my PhD dissertation defense date rapidly approaches. For the purposes of maintaining my sanity, reading and writing about SF remains my primary relaxation hobby—surprising perhaps as I read a lot of depressing SF that wouldn’t be “relaxing” for most people. According to Megan at From Couch to Moon I like my fiction “moody, broody, meta, and twisted.”
And other than a few satires here and there, my favorite SF reads of 2016 fit firmly within Megan’s descriptors.
- The Affirmation, Christopher Priest (1981)
- The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman (variant title: The War of Dreams), Angela Carter (1972). Review forthcoming
- The Dream Millennium, James White (serialized 1973, novel 1974)
- The Committed Men, M. John Harrison (1971)
(Jim Burns’ cover for the 1973 edition)
3.75/5 (collated rating: Good)
Wyman Guin produced eight short stories and one novel between 1950 and 1973 [see his entry on SF encyclopedia]. A pharmacologist/advertising executive by profession, his SF output demonstrates a mature satirical bent touching on topics of sociology, psychology, and psychiatry. Best known for the often anthologized “Beyond Bedlam” (1951), the collection is worth tracking down for “A Man of the Renaissance” (1964), “Volpla” (1956), “The Delegate from Guapanga” (1964), and “Trigger Tide” (1950) as well. It is a shame that he did not write more.
Highly recommended for fans of social Continue reading