So I’ve fallen in with a shady crowd of deplorables. Not alt-righties or Trump fans, but the growing online collective of classic, pulp scifi fantasy-loving cretins. There’s something eminently satisfying about finding a stack of used Vance or ERB books, tweeting out a photo, and receiving validation. I probably need help.
I’m still getting my feet wet with this stuff; I’ve read the first three John Carter books, a couple Vance novels, and a smattering of Anderson and Offutt. I’m not going to count the likes of Lewis, Tolkien, Asimov, Heinlein, etc – too mainstream.
Do Dunsany, Stoker, Chesterton, MacDonald, Walter Scott, and their ilk count? Classic yes; pulp, no. This is why I put together the Grand List – not all of this stuff fits neatly together. At any rate, I’m working on supplying myself (and friends and future progeny) with several years worth of related reading. It’s tough to find some of this stuff, but I’ve discovered a few great sources.
First, there’s a used bookstore in Maryland that’s got a decent-sized SFF section. I’ve only visited a couple times, but spotted some great titles both times and am now a member of their club. This probably doesn’t help most of you (if you live in the DMV area, feel free to inquire further about this place), but chances are there are some used book stores or thrift stores in your area. These can be pretty hit or miss, but every once in a while you’ll hit a jackpot.
Second, Amazon.com is actually a decent market. Sometimes you’ll find a republication of an older work that Amazon actually stocks and handles themselves (a plus if you’re a Prime member), but there are also a fair amount of other sellers peddling their vintage wares. Some of these are ridiculously priced, but others can be had for $4 or $5 (including shipping).
Third, and this one I am a little hesitant to share, for fear of competition snapping up the pearls I seek, is a little company called Wonder Book. Wonder Book is another Maryland-based used book business, but this one boasts a warehouse of over 4 million books. And it also offers online shopping and shipping. I’ve found some gems on Wonder Book that were either unavailable or undesirably expensive on Amazon.
Lastly, there’s a veritable treasure trove to be found online, for free, at Project Gutenberg. They’ve got tons, including old pulp magazines. Have at it!
That’s it for now. After I finish reading some Witcher stories, I’ve got an excess of choices. I’m thinking Anderson and Moorcock, though, for it’s looking like the Witcher universe perhaps draws (maybe steals) a lot of ideas from Three Hearts and Three Lions and the Elric stories, and that sounds to me like an interesting avenue for exploration. We shall see!
(Pardon the recent period of inactivity. I’ve just been married and things have been a whirlwind of logistics, paperwork, and minor illness.)