Monday, March 4, 2013

Old Stuff with Yellowing Pages

A couple of weeks ago we visited the VNSA Book Sale at the fairgrounds in Phoenix. It happens once a year, in February and occurs on a Saturday and Sunday only. We always go on Sunday since A) It's way less crowded than on Saturday, and B) All books are half the sticker price. We leave with about 20 books in total. This year I picked up Anna Karenina, McTeague, Little Dorritt, and Middlemarch. That's the high-brow stuff. Currently I'm about 250 pages into Middlemarch, a book I know I was assigned to read in college, but can't remember a thing about. That same year in college I had to read Vanity Fair, Great Expectations, and Ivanhoe. And that was just one class - 19th Century British Lit. How I made it through the class, in addition to my other classes (I was an English major) I'm not sure. I also had two part-time jobs that insured I worked every night of the week until midnight or so. Sleep is over-rated in college anyway.

But enough blithering...back to the books. I also picked up four Cap Kennedy novels (the first four in the series), which is a space opera featuring Cap Kennedy - Secret Agent of the Spaceways. These were written by Edwin Charles Tubb under the byline of Gregory Kern. Whether they're good or not, I have no idea, but they looked like good pulpy fun.

September 1973, Daw SF Books, Cover art by Jack Gaughan

More Science Fiction that day was Pursuit on Ganymede by Michael D. Resnick, The Mind Behind the Eye by Joseph Green, Planet of Adventure by Jack Vance (cover below), The Beast by A.E. van Vogt, Revelation Space by Alistair Reynolds and finally, The Hit by Brian Garfield. The last one there by Garfield is a hard-boiled thriller. I've always wanted to read more of Brian Garfield's novels, so I'm looking forward to this one. I've read some of A.E. van Vogt's short stories and know that his novels were typically pieced together from his short fiction, to mixed results. Alistair Reynolds is hard Sci-Fi and they others are just sort "what-the-hell" kind of take a chance books. For the price, they're worth the gamble.

1968 Ace Books, Cover art by Jeff Jones

Now, exactly when I'll find time to read them all?....

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