Saturday, November 21, 2015

2 Fritz Leiber horror novels in online PDF reproductions of their "natural" habitats (CONJURE WIFE in UNKNOWN WORLDS, 1943; YOU'RE ALL ALONE in FANTASTIC ADVENTURES, 1950)

The links below take you to the highlighted titles as they have been scanned online from their original magazine appearances.


  • , pp. 9-78 - PDF

  • Novelette 

  • , pp. 105-132 - PDF

  • Readers' Departments 

  • , pp. 6-8 - PDF

  • Short Stories 

  • , pp. 79-93 - PDF
  • , pp. 94-102 - PDF

  • [+] Book Reviews (Anthony Boucher and Langley Searles)
     (2 Reviews) 
    , p. 103 - PDF

  • All Stories Complete 

  • , pp. 8-81 - PDF
  • , pp. 84-89 - PDF
  • , pp. 92-99 - PDF
  • , pp. 102-108 - PDF
  • , pp. 110-123 - PDF
  • , pp. 126-127 - PDF
  • , pp. 130-149 - PDF
  •  - PDF
    Illustrating a scene from "You're All Alone"

  • Three "bonus" issue covers (texts not obviously online that I could find...go find the hardcopies/books!):

    The third Leiber horror novel, in its original shorter form, later expanded for book publication as Our Lady of Darkness (and Edward Ferman might be the most underrated editor in the field's history, if his one-time assistant, later Fantastic and Heavy Metal editor Ted White, isn't):

    And another Jones cover...the Virgil Finlay interior illustrations were Much better--
    the Bloch story is an excellent zombie metafiction(!), adapted for television with moderate success (and a good cast save the star) in the early 1970s; the Sturgeon and Simak stories were good, and the McGivern, Sheldon and Phillips stories not too shabby, either...from the intermittently impressive Fantastic Adventures issues in the several years running up to the launch of Fantastic in 1952):

    Friday, November 20, 2015

    FFB, Winter Holiday Edition: ALL THE LIES THAT ARE MY LIFE (and SHATTERDAY, the collection) by Harlan Ellison (1980 publications in various formats)

    For the second week in a row, I found myself compelled to reread an item I hadn't intended to review, but even more than last week's, it turns out that Harlan Ellison's "All the Lies That Are My Life" resides in a curious nexus for me, as well as being a good and engaging example of quasi-autobiographical fiction, not the first piece nor the last that The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction would print that wasn't in any way actually fantasy or science fiction so much as being drawn from the lives of several sf and fantasy writers.  It involves a funeral and the playback of the videotaped reading of a will, the last testament of a highly successful writer, whose writer-friend is the protagonist and narrator of the story. Naturally, the writer-friend gets to reminisce throughout of his relation with the writer and the other members of the inner circle of family and friends gathered for the reading, including the woman who had been our protagonist's ex, before marrying the late writer some decades before and having sustained a tempestuous and open marriage since.  Ellison has been willing and able to share autobiographical details in various fora, not least in the introductions to his various collections and anthologies, so much is familiar even as transmogrified here, i. e. the late writer's sister getting a final kiss-off in the taped presentation; Ellison has written occasionally of his utter enmity with his sister, perhaps at greatest length in describing the eulogy he delivered at their mother's funeral, and his sibling's voluble hostility as he spoke. There are bits and pieces drawn in the story from earlier accounts of Ellison's relations with Robert Silverberg (though apparently in the introduction to the chapbook publication of the novella, Silverberg makes it clear that the story doesn't in any obvious way parallel their friendship or interactions), though even there there's a mix and match of
    autobiographical and personality and personal style bits between the two primary characters, who are both to some extent mixtures of Silverberg and Ellison and utterly their own characters as fictional simple roman a clef here. I note "apparently," since I don't yet have the chapbook form of the novella, published in 1980 by Underwood/ Miller in an illustrated text (visuals by Kent Bash, whose work is mentioned in passing in the story and whose paintings can be seen on both the book's cover and that for the F&SF issue the story is in, above and at right).  I'll need a copy of the Underwood/Miller edition, I think, not only for the Silverberg "rebuttal" in advance but also for the number of afterwords by other notable writers, at least a few of whose interactions with Ellison and details of their own lives play into the story. (And quite aside from any notions of the Winter of Our Discontent, a notable passage in the story takes place just before and after a holiday snow-covered roadway accident puts the two writers at the heart of the story inside a Chevy temporarily jammed into a snowbank...this for a Winter Holiday Theme edition of Friday's Books, this week.)

    Barry Malzberg, whose review of the Galaxy retrospective anthology I FFB'd a few months back follows the novella in the magazine, has written some similar quasi-autobiographical contemporary-mimetic work set in the fantastic-fiction literary/fan community, among others "Corridors" (first appearing in his 1982 collection The Engines of the Night); for that matter, Malzberg also reviews a Robert Sheckley novel, Sheckley being one of the writers who wrote an afterword to for the Underwood edition and one I was thinking of whose interaction with Ellison was probably mined for a few aspects of the story. And I'd forgotten that "Lies" had also been published in that year in Ellison's major collection released that year, Shatterday, one of his strongest collections gathering much of his best 1970s work; it and Deathbird Stories might be his two best collections of fiction. And my copy of Shatterday is deeply in storage somewhere at the moment, it being the copy my Aunt Beverly traded me for an Ellison nonfiction collection, Sleepless Nights on the Procrustean Bed, which had been published not too long before her mid-1980s visit to my parents' house. Beverly, despite being a very great fan of Ellison, had not heard of the small press collection before. I was reminded of this not too many weeks ago, when Beverly, who'd been holding on through no few medical crises in recent years, passed...what I wrote on that occasion wasn't quite as detailed as what I wrote after Thomas Disch's death some years ago (Disch, too, contributed to the Underwood edition), but my cousins were kind enough to suggest they were given a little comfort by it. All the things we take from this life and do what we can with them. 

    And I bought my new copy of this issue of F&SF a month or so ago at a community booksale at the high school around the block, from the tables staffed by the Philadelphia Science Fiction Society, whose annual PhilCon begins tonight at a hotel a mile away. Insert Zeno's Paradox references here, amid the notions of what we remember, how we remember, and what's gone and always with us.

    For more of today's books, please see Patti Abbott's blog.

    Courtesy ISFDB and the Contento/Locus indices:

    •  · Introduction: Mortal Dreads · in
    •  · Jeffty Is Five · ss F&SF Jul ’77
    •  · How’s the Night Life on Cissalda? · ss Chrysalis, ed. Roy Torgeson, Zebra, 1977; Heavy Metal Nov ’77
    •  · Flop Sweat · ss Heavy Metal Mar ’79
    •  · Would You Do It For a Penny? · Harlan Ellison & Haskell Barkin · ss Playboy Oct ’67
    •  · The Man Who Was Heavily into Revenge · ss Analog Aug ’78
    •  · Shoppe Keeper · ss The Arts and Beyond, ed. Thomas F. Monteleone, Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1977
    •  · All the Lies That Are My Life · na Underwood-Miller; Columbia, PA Oct ’80
    •  · Django · ss Galileo #6 ’78
    •  · Count the Clock That Tells the Time · ss Omni Dec ’78
    •  · In the Fourth Year of the War · ss Midnight Sun #5 ’79
    •  · Alive and Well and on a Friendless Voyage · ss F&SF Jul ’77
    •  · All the Birds Come Home to Roost · ss Playboy Mar ’79
    •  · Opium · ss Shayol #2 ’78
    •  · The Other Eye of Polyphemus · ss Cosmos SF&F Magazine Nov ’77
    •  · The Executioner of the Malformed Children · ss Iguanacon Program Book, 1978
    •  · Shatterday · ss Gallery Sep ’75; Science Fiction Monthly v2 #8 ’75
    • Publication: All the Lies That Are My Life
    • Authors: Harlan Ellison
    • Year: 1980-09-00

    Thursday, November 19, 2015

    Thursday's Overlooked Films and/or Other A/V: the links to reviews, interviews, etc. (delayed from Tuesday, with further apologies)

    Sonia Delaunay designs
    This week's adventures in audio/visual materials that the reviewers think need at least another look (or, occasionally, actually deserve obscurity); thanks as always to everyone, and please let me know if I've missed your or someone else's notable posts.  Todd Mason, who notes that the Criterion Blogathon is responsible for most of the Criterion DVD and BluRay reviews this week...see Kristina Dijan, Ruth and Aaron West's citations for guides to the participants and their essays...

    Aaron West: The Apu Trilogy; Criterion Blogathon

    Anne Billson: westerns from countries other than the US...

    Anonymous: The Treasure of the Sierra MadreAu Hazard Balthazar; The Young Girls of Rochefort; No Way Out

    Bhob Stewart: Pandora and the Flying Dutchman (keep scrolling)

    The Big Broadcast: 15 November 2015 (host Rob Bamberger has no clue about the history of dime novels, pulps and Nick Carter, and isn't afraid to display this.)

    Bill Crider: The Adventures of Don Juan [trailer]

    BV Lawson: Media Murder (it's the delayed time of year)

    Colin: Thunder in the East

    Comedy Film Nerds: Rob Cohen; The Martian

    Cullen Gallagher: The Monster and the Girl

    Cynthia Fuchs: DemocratsToto and His Sisters 

    David Vineyard: Midnight (1934 film); Time Lock

    Doug Ellis: the 1939 WorldCon, the first

    Dorian Bartolucci: Lloyd Corrigan

    Elizabeth Foxwell: The Cat and the Canary (1939 film)

    Evan Lewis: Django (1966 film)

    Gary Deane: Vanishing PointGone in Sixty Seconds (1974)

    George Kelley: DC SuperVillains/Justice League: Masterminds of Crime

    Gilligan Newton-John: Summer School (1976 film); VHS film boxes

    Iba Dawson: Catfish (2010 film)

    Ivan G. Shreve, Jr.: I Can Get It for You Wholesalefilms on Turner Classic Movies; The Many Loves of Dobey Gillis

    Jack Seabrook: Alfred Hitchcock Presents: "The Belfry"

    Jackie Kashian: Chef; Steve Young on American Horror Story, Harper, etc.

    Jacqueline T. Lynch: No Down Payment

    James Reasoner: The Bold Caballero

    Janet Varney: Carla Cackowski; Kate Walsh 

    Jeff Flugel: Red Dwarf

    Jerry House: Teenagers from Outer Space; X Minus One: "Nightmare" (from Benet's "By the Waters of Babylon")

    John Grant: Curtain at Eight; Crime Unlimited

    Jonathan Lewis: Terror Beneath the Sea; Cowboy from Brooklyn

    Karen Hannsberry: New York Confidential; Tom Neal

    Kate Laity: Anna Karenina (2012 film)

    Kelly Robinson: Eraserhead and silent film

    Ken Levine: Larry Gelbart; blog party

    Kristina Dijan: Criterion Blogathon: Day 4; Day 1; In Cold Blood; Eduardo Cianelli; The Florentine Dagger

    Laura G: Two Weeks with Love; Night in New Orleans; Them!; Man-Proof; 30 in 30

    Lucy Brown: Angel Face

    Martin Edwards: The Scotland Yard Crime Museum; the Detection Club

    Marty McKee: Blood Beast of Monster Mountain; Tales from the Darkside: The Movie; The Verdict; Narrow Margin (1990)

    Mildred Perkins: Dead Rising: Watchtower; Longmire

    Mystery Dave: Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen

    Patricia Nolan-Hall: Sanjuro

    Patti Abbott: Rachel, Rachel

    Prashant Trikkanad: Chess in movies

    Rick: Sydney Greenstreet; Family Affair: "Christmas Came a Little Early"

    Rod Lott; Deliver Us from Evil; Never Say Never Again; Beowulf (2007); Murder Can Hurt You

    "Rupert Pupkin": Living in Oblivion

    Ruth: Criterion Blogathon; Ikiru; Daffy Duck

    Sam Juliano: I Walked with a Zombie

    Scott Cupp: Doctor Strange

    Sergio Angelini: I Start Counting

    Stacia Jones: The Deadly Bees; Phase IV; Hustle; Darling Lili

    Stephen Bowie: Leigh Chapman

    Stephen Gallagher: George Barris

    Steve Lewis: Killshot Cry Danger; Thanks a Million; Silverfox  (Mason on Killshot some years back)

    Television Obscurities: Hollywood Special (eventually aka ABC Sunday Night at the Movies)

    Todd Mason: The Virgin Spring

    Victoria Loomes: Sonia Delaunay

    Vienna: Leslie Howard; Robert Ryan

    Yvette Banek: Ministry of Fear