" In this universe the night was falling; the shadows were lengthening towards an east that would not know another dawn. But elsewhere the stars were still young and the light of morning lingered; and along the path he once had followed, Man would one day go again"

Arthur C. Clarke Against the Fall of Night

Friday, April 29, 2016

Ontario Trip

My wife and I have spent the last 10 days in Ontario visiting family and friends. We have not been back for several years due to work on the cabin and it was great to see everyone so happy and healthy. This of course, also meant visiting some bookstores. The haul was particularly good and so will require a couple of posts. The first group really sums up sf for me, Ace doubles, atmospheric  Lehr covers, a spiffy juvenile and titles like Spacehive, The Mutant Weapon, The Genetic GeneralTime to Teleport and Rocket Man. I did retouch a couple of photos but overall the books are in good shape.

I have wanted this one for quite some time, The Pirates cover is by Emsh, Mutant Weapon is not credited


These are upgrades on existing copies. Time to Teleport cover Emsh, Genetic General cover by Ed Valigursky, Recruit cover by Emsh.


Spacehive, Ace D-478, 1960, cover uncredited. From the back it looks like those pesky "Reds" are at it again.


Two beautiful Lehr covers I have never seen before, and a plus Assignment Nor'Dyren is by Sydney Van Scyoc author of the stunning novel Saltflower.


I never encounter the type of juvenile novels that might have graced the library shelves of my youth and if I do they are far too expensive. So finding this in the London Goodwill store was amazing.

Rocket Man by Lee Corry, Illustrated by William J Wagoner, Henry Holt and Company, New York, 1955.



Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Paul Lehr 1, look for youtube trailer to The Visionary World of Paul Lehr

One event that really started me collecting, rather than just reading science fiction was the gift of a number of books on SF movies and especially the art of sf illustration
 from a friend. I was enthralled with the history of SF 
illustration, the pulps, the small press hardcovers, and the wonderful paperback covers. I was fascinated by the 
artists visions of the story, sometimes true to the text, sometimes totally unrelated, so thanks Gerhard. I was also interested in how, just as the stories reflect the current 
issues of science, politics and society, the art reflected current trends in the wider world of art, design and even adverting. I also, as one would expect picked my favourite artists. I have long considered Richard Powers to be my favourite paperback cover artist, but I Paul Lehr is a close second.

I also wanted to mention the wonderful trailer for an 
upcoming film concerning Paul Lehr that is available on youtube. As an added bonus the trailer also shows some of Lehr's beautiful wooden sculptures.

" Published on Apr 30, 2015
THE VISIONARY WORLD OF PAUL LEHR is a landmark documentary that will explore the life of one of the most important science fiction artists of the 20th century."


I also want to mention my favourite book on SF Illustration, a gift from my wife, Infinite Worlds: The Fantastic Visions of Science Fiction Art, by Vincent Di Fate, The Wonderland Press, 1997. (It is interesting to note the book's cover image was from Paul Lehr's work)

Lehr like Powers is considered to have been be strongly influenced By Surrealism. He trained with another great of SF illustration, Stanley Meltzoff, and his influence can be seen in Lehr's early work. However Lehr did develop his own, very recognizable style, with enigmatic figures, and architecture composed of highly stylized geometric shapes including dense interwoven landscapes/cityscapes? of domes, cones and pyramids, So I have raided my shelves for some of my favourite covers. Hopefully you will enjoy seeing his work as much as I do.

This edition of Soldier, Ask Not is the most vividly remembered paperback of my youth. The brilliant 
Lehr cover really complimented, what was for me, 
the best story Dickson ever wrote.

Still working on the Watson but it seems pretty good so far. 
The cover is spectacular.

Salt flower is a really unusual alien contact story: 
quite well written.

Silververg's version of Pirates VS Aliens, I loved this as a teenager. This would make a fun movie.

Is this a great alien autopsy cover?

As mentioned Infinite Worlds is a great resource for the SF art lover.