reading nice things

Fetish for nice things aside, I’ve been looking at all my books and particularly the dodgy, old paperbacks. There are particular gems among them and I thought it would be nice to have nice editions and get rid of the increasingly fragile/deteriorating copies. While reading about some of the nice editions that Easton Press do, I happened to come across a few copies that they published of Clifford Simak‘s work, Way Station and City. I dutifully ordered both and they’ve been sitting on the shelf for the last couple of months.

A couple of nights ago, I picked up Way Station and started reading it again. Once again it grabbed me right from the start and I was reminded of how much I love the flow of Simak’s writing and his treatment of science fiction incorporating believable approaches to technological developments. I recall reading him voraciously, and ending up with a collection of 20 or so of his novels secondhand. Way Station and City are regarded as two of his best.

The Easton Press editions are nicely bound in leather, with gilt edging and a bound ribbon marker. Having recently picked up a splendid edition of Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card from Centipede Press, I’m looking forward to re-reading it too. I’ve come across a list of the Easton Press SF editions and already spotted a couple on AbeBooks. I don’t want them all but there are several at least I may well acquire at some point including:

  • A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller, Jr.
  • The Day of the Triffids by John Wyndham
  • The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin
  • Dune by Frank Herbert
  • Earth Abides by George R. Stewart
  • Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  • The Foundation Trilogy by Isaac Asimov
  • More Than Human by Theodore Sturgeon
  • Solaris by Stanislaw Lem

One book I’d like but left off the list above is “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” by Philip K. Dick. Many of the Easton Press editions I’m after are likely to cost around $60-100 (+pp) however this one, on which the movie BladeRunner was based, seems to be a minimum of $400 or thereabouts. Ouch. I still have the paperback dad gave me when the movie came out. I didn’t see the movie at the time but read the book instead. It would be nice to re-read it too. Today, I did at least buy the Easton Press edition of one of Dick’s other great works, The Man in the High Castle.

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