Monday, November 9, 2009

333: A bibliography of the Science-Fantasy Novel

In my spare time today I picked up a new catalogue of books that had come in (you know, other dealers send catalogues of their books, hoping to sell them while I read them, trying to memorize the authors and titles in case I stumble across them in my book hunting)  and always learning something new in the process.

Today's catalogue is an unassuming thing -- gray paper, with no color photos in a stapled at the corner type of container.

BUT, the books ....

this dealer specializes (or at least this catalogue has a small collection) in early Science Fiction / Fantasy / dark fiction / utopian fiction. Stuff from the late 1890's to the 1930's -- when most other SF material was being published in Pulps since no one wanted to pay for them -- but these are mostly hardbacks and by both well-known and virtually unknown authors (at least in today's SF world). 
Known authors include: Algernon Blackwood, Marjorie Bowen, Arthur C. Clarke, Robert W. Chambers, Ed Emishwiller.

Unknown (today) authors include: Dryasdust (pseudonym of M. Y. Halidon), J. Meade Falkner, Edgar Jepson, and Owen Rutter.

The thing is -- not only was I very interested to look through the catalogue and find stuff that was new to me, this dealer is of the old school where not only do you get a description of the book, but a reason for it being there (and for the astonishing price put on a strange, unknown, book).

Which brings me to the 333 - a Bibliography of the Science-Fantasy Novel at the opening...

many of the books listed have been included in a small paperback reference published in 1953 called 333...

Three-Hundred-Thirty-Three books of note in the field of Science Fantasy (with explanations).

I don't have a copy of this reference, but I want one.
I want it NOW.
Then I can read through it, bit by bit and learn and carefully memorize all the details held therein.

Hopefully this week I'll be able to order one. I've found prices and copies available.

That's one of the wonders of catalogues.  There's a whole host of things you either didn't know which you can now research, or, there's things you did know about (as is the case with this reference) and can start to relearn.

Love to read them catalogues.

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