Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Another of my Woolworths finds, and one of my first encounters with raw, primeval space opera. Published in 1968, the stories date from a decade earlier; my favourite is still Edmond Hamilton’s ‘The Starcombers’, which has all the tropes (vagabond starsailors attempting to make a living in a state of pure and untrammelled capitalism, ancient alien artifacts, a ferociously strange niche in a dying world) of the pure quill. The Easy Eye gimmick is long-forgotten; it does actually work, but large type means more pages than usual, which probably wasn’t a great economic model in the cutthroat world of pulp publishing.
I can’t now remember if I bought more short story collections than novels because I preferred collections, or if there were fewer novels on offer. Long exposure to the publishing industry suggests the latter.