Library Addition: Tobias Buckell’s Xenowealth

February 10th, 2016

I finally got my copy of Toby Buckell’s Xenowealth collection, a Kickstarter project I first backed in November of 2014.

Buckell, Tobias S. Xenowealth. Self-published, 2016. First edition hardback, one of an unspecified number signed by the author, a Fine copy in a Fine dust jacket. Short story collection set in the same universe as Crystal Rain. There were only 63 backers of the hardback level, so it’s possible the total print run for this edition is under 100 copies. Due to an error, my name was not listed among the backs on the acknowledgements page, but Toby sent me an extra copy each of the hardback and the trade paperback to make up for it.

Xenowealth 1

Library Addition: Two Gnome Press Anthologies

February 8th, 2016

I picked up two nice Gnome Press anthologies from a National Book Auction at quite a reasonable price.

  • Greenberg, Martin. Journey to Infinity. Gnome Press, 1951. First edition hardback, a Fine- copy with a tiny bit of bend at head in a Fine- second state (30 titles) dust jacket with a few small traces of wear, and a few pinhead spots on the front cover, otherwise extremely bright and attractive. Chalker/Owings (1991), pages 198-199. Kemp, 204. Bought for $25 with buyer premium.

    Journey to Infinity

  • Greenberg, Martin. All About the Future. Gnome Press, 1954. First edition hardback, a Fine- copy with slight dust soiling to page block edges and one small indention to very bottom of from board, in a near Fine- dust jacket with a 1″ closed triangular tear at bottom front along spine, a semi-closed 1/8 tear at head, and shallow chipping at points. Chalker/Owings (1991), page 202. Kemp, 204. Note that Kemp calls for black boards with red lettering; my copy is gray boards with a reddish cloth spine with silver lettering, and Chalker/Owings doesn’t report on the binding state at all, which would make this a previously unrecorded binding variant. (Edited to add: Some fellow collectors believe that this is in fact the primary binding state, and that Kemp got it wrong and the black boards/red lettering state is the variant.) Bought for $20 with buyer premium.

    All About the Future

  • Shoegazer Sunday: Vidulgi OoyoO’s “Infinity”

    February 7th, 2016

    Korean psychgazer band Vidulgi OoyoO’s “Infinity” is one of those songs that starts slow and keeps building on the same basic groove, a bit like Lemon’s Chair, though Vidulgi OoyoO has a harder and faster edge.

    (Hat tip: Primal Music Blog.)

    Random Thing That Amuses Me

    February 4th, 2016

    The name of this top-ranked high school football recruit: Chauncey Gardner.

    I’m just going to assume all my readers know why I find that name amusing. And how often do I get to use the “football” and “Peter Sellers” tags for the same post?

    Library Addition: First Edition of Samuel Butler’s Erewhon

    February 3rd, 2016

    I ignored a couple of my own collecting rules when picking this up, namely picking up a book from before my usual collecting period, and picking up a rebound copy. However, the book in question was important enough, and the price I paid cheap enough, that I don’t mind.

    (Butler, Samuel). Erewhon or Over the Range. Trübner & Co., 1872. First edition hardback, a rebound copy in modern full leather (at least according to the auction description, but “modern” is a relative term; the new binding is worn enough that it appears to be at least 50 years old), original covers bound in rear of textblock, with heavy rubbing on joints and corners, hinges starting, minor scattered foxing on preliminary and terminal leaves, pages characteristically brittle, overall a Very Good rebind copy. Published anonymously, Erehwon (“nowhere” spelled backwards) is satire in the mode of Gullivers Travels, and one of the most important 19th century Utopian/Dystopian novels. Bleiler Checklist (1978), page 36. Bleiler Checklist (1948), page 68. Bleiler, SF: The Early Years, page 113. Reginald (Volume I), page 84. Barron, Anatomy of Wonder 4, 1-19. Magill, Survey of Science Fiction Literature Volume Two, page 729. Bought for $75 (including buyer’s premium) from Heritage Auctions.



    And here’s a picture of the original boards bound into the back:


    Note that E. F. Bleiler in SF: The Early Years says there was a second, corrected state printed the same year as the first edition. I have been unable to find points that distinguish between the first and second state, and the original boards bound into my edition seems to match those first editions copies I’ve been able to locate online.

    I believe this is now the oldest book in my library, replacing a first edition of Camille Flammarion’s Urania (1890). Next oldest would be my first editions of Robert W. Chambers’ The King in Yellow and H. G. Wells’ Select Conversations with An Uncle (Now Extinct), both 1895.

    Library Addition: Orbit 9 Inscribed to Robert and Virginia Heinlein

    February 2nd, 2016

    This is somewhere halfway between a mere curiosity and a really interesting association copy:

    Knight, Damon, editor (Leon Stover, Gene Wolfe, R. A. Lafferty, etc.). Orbit 9. Putnam, 1971. First edition hardback, a Near Fine copy with a touch of edgewear at points in a Near Fine- dust jacket with slight edgewear and very slight darkening to white rear jacket. Inscribed by contributor Leon Stover: “For Robert & Virgina Heinlein/with thanks for/9 June 1984/Leon Stover.” Stover would not only later publish a critical book on Heinlein from Twayne, but was working on the official authorized biography of Heinlein before the latter’s death, a project cancelled after a falling out with Virginia Heinlein. Bought for $6.50 from Houston bookstore Kaboom Books.

    Orbit 9


    Nice Texas Monthly Profile of Joe R. Lansdale

    February 1st, 2016

    In case you missed it, there’s a swell profile of Joe R. Lansdale in the latest Texas Monthly. For a writer who’s always been on the cusp of fame, he’s done pretty darn well for yourself. It helps that he’s good and prolific…

    (Hat tip: Bill Crider.)

    Shoegazer Sunday: Picnic’s “Stop the Fall”

    January 31st, 2016

    Here’s a find: A band from Estonia that sounds a bit like a cross between several of my favorite Shoegaze bands (Slowdive, Echodrone, Mazzy Star, School of Seven Bells, Malory) called Picnic that just about no one seems to have heard of. “Stop the Fall” has all of 17 views as I type this.

    And they’re pretty good. Good enough that I picked up The Weather’s Fine, their debut album, which iTunes has at $7.99.

    Library Addition: Jay Franklin’s The Rat Race

    January 25th, 2016

    Picked up another FPCI volume:

  • Franklin, Jay (AKA John Franklin Carter). The Rat Race. Fantasy Publishing Co. Inc., 1950. First edition hardback, one of 1,200 hardback copies (per Chalker/Owings), a Fine- copy in the second state (gray boards, red titling, per Kemp) binding, with slight bend at head and heel in a Near Fine+ second state (per Kemp) dust jacket that’s slightly misaligned (about 1/4″ more on rear than front flap), slight wear at extremities, and some indentations along rear spine gutter. Chalker/Owings, The Science-Fantasy Publishers (1991), page 171. Kemp, The Anthem Series, page 79. Bought for $19 (including dealer discount), plus a $5 show credit coupon, at the Austin Book and Paper Show.

    Franklin Rat Race

    I’m not actively targeting FPCI titles, per se, though I do pick them up as targets of opportunity. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen the first state dust jacket offered for sale. I wonder what the story is behind the different jackets, but FPCI did a lot of odd things…

  • Sunday Shoegazer: Blackstone Rngrs’ “Frozen Echo”

    January 24th, 2016

    For your Sunday dose of Shoegaze, here’s Austin’s own Blackstone Rngrs (yes, they spell it that way), another Saint Marie Records band, with “Frozen Echo,” another entry in the “Hey, we have no video budget, so how many digital effects can we cram in” sweepstakes.