Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Feature: Holiday Gift Suggestions for the Ultimate SF Bibliophile

Every Wednesday, I'll have an essay or a feature on any topic that catches my fancy!

Looking for affordable Christmas gifts? Nope, this isn't the article you're looking for. However, these recommendations do give you much value for your money (i.e. gifts I wish other people would get me) and for some people, will last them the entire year. Come on, you're a bibliophile. You don't need a book. You need booksss. (And let's face it... if you don't indulge yourself on Christmas, when will you buy yourself the best present money can buy? Bonus brownie points for supporting indie publishers.)

1. Benefactor Special Offers from Electric Velocipede ($150) - "The base offer includes a t-shirt based on this design, a copy of Logorrhea, one copy each of the Ezra Pines, William Shunn, and Robert Freeman Wexler chapbooks, and copies of Electric Velocipede 7, 9, 10, 12, 13, and 14."

Here's your chance to get everything John Klima at an affordable price. Logorrhea is a fantastic anthology while the chapbooks and magazines features new and underrated authors. The package also includes everything Klima will publish in the future and the price is the same for both US or international customers--clearly Klima is losing out on this deal! (And one should hurry as as of press time, there are only 16 slots left for this deal.)

Also Consider: Electric Velocipede Subscription ($20.00) and get 2 Night Shade Books titles free (and, uh, each Night Shade title tends to cost more than $10.00 so it doesn't take a math genius to figure this one out).

2. Small Beer Press Library Paperback ($299) / Hardcover ($314) - "Small Beer Press has published 26 books (not including chapbooks or paperback reprints of our own hardcovers) which all together have a retail price of $475."

Small Beer Press is simply awesome and features an ensemble of quality authors such as Kelly Link, Elizabeth Hand, Geoff Ryman, Carol Emshwiller, Joan Aiken... the list goes on. And in the event that you do want to set up a library (whether public or private), this is a fantastic start. Oh, and if I were you, I'd get the Hardcover package. Just $15 to "upsize" your order.

Also Consider: The Whole Small Beer Ebook Package ($99.95) in a 2 GB flash drive.

3. Soft Skull Fiction Subscription 2008 ($100.00) - Includes Black Flies, Mercury Under My Tongue, Wildly Irish, All About Lulu , Dead in Desemboque, Mr. Spic Goes to Washington, Lonely Werewolf Girl, Suzy, Led Zeppelin, and Me, The Pisstown Chaos, Bad Habits, and How the Dead Dream.

Soft Skull Press features a diverse set of authors and books that would otherwise might not have seen the light of day. If you want a sampling of several good, modern titles, you might want to give this deal a look.

4. PS Publishing Lifetime Membership Subscription (£1,600) - Includes: Standard hardcover editions of all novella titles; Standard hardcover editions of all other long-form titles; Unsigned, paperback editions of all issues of Postscripts magazine.

When it comes to cutting edge horror (and anything else related to that field), PS Publishing can't be beat. Unfortunately, the company's print runs are very limited and this is your chance to grab what are definitely collector items (more so if you go for the Deluxe Package). But simply put, imagine this: getting a number of quality books/magazines every month for the rest of your life (okay, so maybe it's not so great a deal if you have a life expectancy of less than one year...).

Also Consider: Postscripts Subscription for 5 Years (£200/$300).

5. Planet Stories Ongoing Subscription (20% off the cover price, each title retailing around $12.99) - "Personally selected by Erik Mona and Paizo's award-winning editorial staff, each Planet Stories volume has been chosen with the interests of fantasy and science fiction enthusiasts and gamers in mind. Timeless classics from authors like Robert E. Howard (Conan the Barbarian), Michael Moorcock (Elric), and Leigh Brackett (The Empire Strikes Back) will add an edge to your personal library, providing a better understanding of the genre with classic stories that easily stand the test of time.

Each Planet Stories edition is a Paizo exclusive—you cannot get these titles from any other publisher. Many of the tales in our line first appeared in the "pulp era" of the early 20th Century that produced authors like H.P. Lovecraft, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fritz Lieber, and Robert E. Howard, and have been out of print for decades. Others are available only in rare limited editions or moldering pulp magazines worth hundreds of dollars."

The pulp genre has made a comeback and Planet Stories pays tribute to some of the best authors in the genre's long history. No longer are authors such as C.L. Moore and Leigh Brackett reduced to scholarly footnotes, one can actually read their work and enjoy their prose.

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