Browsing Around in Pre-1975 Anthologies Other Than Conklin's

Extollager

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Herewith I invite interested folk to browse around in anthologies that they may have on hand, that were published 40 or more years ago (as of 2015), and edited by someone other than Groff Conklin -- who for many years seems to have been the sf anthology king.

Anthologists who would be appropriate for this new thread include Don Wollheim --
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...Damon Knight --


...Judith Merril--

...Robert Silverberg--
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...Arthur C. Clarke--
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... and more.

For our purposes, I suggest we define "anthology" as an assembly of stories by multiple authors (in contrast to single-author "collections"), and that we confine ourselves to books that reprint previously-published stories, i.e. that we not include books that published their contents for the first time.

Purely up to you, but I propose to rate the selected stories 1-5, thus:

5/5: Outstanding stories in one's whole personal experience of reading sf and a cherished classic

4/5: Exceptionally good

3/5: Worth reading


2/5: Perhaps passable entertainment, but eminently skippable

1/5: Not worth reading
 
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Extollager

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And I don't see why we shouldn't consider fantasy anthologies, such as ones Lin Carter edited...
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...nor why we shouldn't include anthologies aimed at a "juvenile" audience...
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...nor do I see why we shouldn't consider anthologies devoted to content from a particular magazine...
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This thread could be a good place for us to reflect on the role that anthologies played in our early discovery of sf and/or fantasy, the finding of favorite authors, and the shaping of taste...
 
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Extollager

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I'm hoping this thread will attract lots of contributors. My own first story is "Junkyard," a Clifford D. Simak story which I have just read as reprinted in The Second Galaxy Reader of Science Fiction (Internet image above).
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This suspenseful and clever story, reprinted from the May 1953, issue earns 4/5 from me. Terrestrial space travelers land on an uninteresting (at first) planet. They discover remains of two previous ships, with puzzling evidence of terrified departure. But the earthmen realize that they have forgotten how to operate their own ship.

Can this be right? -- I checked Contento, and the story never seems to have been reprinted in any of Simak's books, unless perhaps a relatively recent one not included in the Contento sources.
 
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Extollager

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Here's another anthologist whose editions you used to see... but I suppose he is forgotten now: Leo Margulies.
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Ralf 58

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I'm hoping this thread will attract lots of contributors. My own first story is "Junkyard," a Clifford D. Simak story which I have just read as reprinted in The Second Galaxy Reader of Science Fiction (Internet image above).

...

Can this be right? -- I checked Contento, and the story never seems to have been reprinted in any of Simak's books, unless perhaps a relatively recent one not included in the Contento sources.

Hello Extollager,

I know this story and I find them very good. They should not be scientifically questioned. Can we steal brain content and retrieve? One should not think too long about it. ;)
But the story is written very funny. I enjoyed it a lot of fun while reading.

In fact, the story was published in the United States only in Galaxy SF (May 1953) and in the Second Galaxy Reader from 1954. It was then taken in 1988 in the Simak collection "Off Planet" which was published in the UK. The book is available as a hardcover and a paperback.

Here are all the English publications, which are known to me:
English publications of Junkyard

But the story was translated into several languages: Spanish, Italian, French, German, Dutch, Bulgarian, Russian, Czech and Lithuanian. Especially in Russia it is very well known. Here it has been included in several Simak collections.

Here are all the publications worldwide:
All publications of Junkyard

Incidentally, the story was adapted as a radio play. You can listen it here:
X Minus One - Junkyard (Episode 40)
 

Bick

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I picked up a good looking anthology today from a used book store, pre-1975, so it looks like I'll be able to play in this thread:

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Best SF Two, edited by Edmund Crispin, 1960.
I hadn't heard of this anthology until I saw it, but it looks like a cracker. Edmund Crispin, I learn, was an anthologist, most notable for this series which ran from Best SF (1955) to Best SF Seven (1970). He had two short stories published. I can't say I'd heard of him, but perhaps that's just my ignorance.

This contains terrific looking stories:
The Altar at Midnight • (1952) • shortstory by C. M. Kornbluth
Hobson's Choice • (1952) • shortstory by Alfred Bester
Outside • (1955) • shortstory by Brian W. Aldiss
Angel's Egg • (1951) • novelette by Edgar Pangborn
Placet Is a Crazy Place • (1946) • shortstory by Fredric Brown
Little Lost Robot • (1947) • novelette by Isaac Asimov
The Copper Dahlia • (1949) • shortstory by Gerald Kersh
When You're Smiling • (1955) • novelette by Theodore Sturgeon
Zero Hour • (1947) • shortstory by Ray Bradbury
Worrywart • (1953) • shortstory by Clifford D. Simak
Una • (1937) • novelette by John Wyndham
Blowups Happen • (1940) • novelette by Robert A. Heinlein
Impostor • (1953) • shortstory by Philip K. Dick
The Nine Billion Names of God • (1953) • shortstory by Arthur C. Clarke

Also, you've heard of two birds with one stone, well this is two threads with one book, as it has a Clifford Simak story in it. (y)
 

Randy M.

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Bick, am I recalling right that you enjoy mystery fiction? If so and you like works in the "cozy" tradition, Crispin wrote some amusing mysteries in the 1940s and 1950s (as I recall) featuring Professor Gervase Fen. The Moving Toyshop I remember as being very funny.

More on topic, this anthology came out in 1975 on the nose:
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Contents taken from ISFDB

The Mark of the Beast • (1890) • shortstory by Rudyard Kipling
Secret Worship • [John Silence] • (1908) • novelette by Algernon Blackwood
The People of Pan • [Gerald Canevin] • (1929) • novelette by Henry S. Whitehead
The Earlier Service • (1935) • shortstory by Margaret Irwin
Young Goodman Brown • (1835) • shortstory by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Strange Occurrence in Clerkenwell • (1895) • shortstory by Arthur Machen
Casting the Runes • (1911) • novelette by M. R. James
In the Valley of the Sorceress • (1916) • shortstory by Sax Rohmer
De Grey: A Romance • (1868) • novelette by Henry James
The Legend of the Arabian Astrologer • (1832) • novelette by Washington Irving
Playing with Fire • (1900) • shortstory by Arthur Conan Doyle
Was It a Dream? • (1910) • shortstory by Guy de Maupassant
Not Here, O Apollo! A Christmas Story Heard at Midsummer • shortstory by Arthur Quiller-Couch
The Inn of the Two Witches • (1913) • novelette by Joseph Conrad (variant of Inn of the Two Witches)
Phoebe • (1907) • shortstory by O. Henry
The Door in the Wall • (1906) • shortstory by H. G. Wells
The Yellow Sign • (1895) • novelette by Robert W. Chambers
The Cobweb • (1914) • shortstory by Saki [as by H. H. Munro ]
The Fortune-Teller • (1932) • shortstory by Karel Capek

I've reread a few of these over the years since I first read the collection. "Casting the Runes" remains one of the more effective ghost stories and the "The Yellow Sign" and "Secret Worship" two of the more effective weird fantasies I've read. The Hawthorne isn't my favorite, but it's good. I should go back and reread some of the others; for instance, I'd completely forgotten I read anything by Capek before reading R.U.R. a couple of years ago.

While I can't recall anything about the story, I remember being mightily impressed by the Quiller-Couch, enough so that I bought his collection of stories from Ash-Tree Press a number of years ago. I read about half of it -- not including that story -- and haven't gone back; he's rather blander now than he was to me then.

At any rate, when I bought this in (probably) 1975, I loved it extravagantly. Reviewing the contents, I still think it's a pretty good volume of fantasy.


Randy M.
 

Bick

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Bick, am I recalling right that you enjoy mystery fiction? If so and you like works in the "cozy" tradition, Crispin wrote some amusing mysteries in the 1940s and 1950s (as I recall) featuring Professor Gervase Fen. The Moving Toyshop I remember as being very funny.
Thanks Randy, as yes well remembered, I do like golden age detective fiction. Now I bother to look him up beyond ISFDB, I see he wrote a bunch of detective novels.

EDIT: His books are all available it seems, e.g. here. And they are described as a cross between Christie and Wodehouse - two of my favourite authors from the first half of the 20th century. I should definitely look into this further! Sorry, that was all rather off topic - back to SF anthology stories. I should get to read the Simak in that book above today.
 
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Extollager

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...nor why we shouldn't include anthologies aimed at a "juvenile" audience...
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I have an interlibrary loan copy of Beyond Tomorrow for a little while & just reread "Desertion" by Simak, a 4/5 story at least. Introducing it, Damon Knight says it's a "long-time favorite" of his "for its mystery and its surprise ending, and the genuine touch of wonder in it." This story would be a good one to point to as an example of the kind of story that you could enjoy as it is, 60 years or so ago, where now, I suppose, a writer would be expected to turn it into a long novel that would be the first of a multi-volume sequence.
 

Extollager

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Also in Beyond Tomorrow, Clarke's "The Deep Range," which as a reasonably interesting undersea sf story, about futuristic a "cowboy" who protects his herd (of whales) from predators, gets a 3/5 score from me.

The submarine theme reminded me irrelevantly of the 1963 Thresher disaster. Seeing something at the time or a bit later about this seems to have creeped me out as a kid (as well it might, considering the rather dreadful way 129 men perished).
 

BigBadBob141

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REF: Bick
Thank you for listing the contents of "Best SF 2", this was one of the first collections I read as a child.
There are some very good stories in this one, I well remember the F.Brown, I.Asimov, R.Bradbury, R.A.Heinlein and of course this is the first time I read the Arthur C Clarke.
All good stuff!
 

J Riff

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Argh, it hurts to look at these. At one time I had most of them. I got rid of novels first, but I kept any and all SS anthologies... like these.... and then .... *() ....
I seem to recall that all of them had at least one good story. At least.
 

clovis-man

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From 1959, Anthony Boucher's two volume: A Treasury of Great Science Fiction.

Some great stories:

Volume One
  • 5 - Before the Curtain . . . - essay by Anthony Boucher
  • 9 - Re-Birth - (1955) - novel by John Wyndham (aka The Chrysalids) [as by John Wyndham ]
  • 136 - The Shape of Things That Came - (1951) - shortstory by Richard Deming
  • 141 - Pillar of Fire - (1948) - novelette by Ray Bradbury
  • 170 - Waldo - (1942) - novella by Robert A. Heinlein
  • 245 - The Father-Thing - (1954) - shortstory by Philip K. Dick
  • 255 - The Children's Hour - (1944) - novelette by Henry Kuttner and C. L. Moore
  • 288 - Gomez - (1954) - novelette by C. M. Kornbluth
  • 308 - The [Widget], the [Wadget], and Boff - (1955) - novella by Theodore Sturgeon
  • 370 - Sandra - (1957) - shortstory by George P. Elliott
  • 380 - Beyond Space and Time - (1938) - novelette by Joel Townsley Rogers
  • 400 - The Martian Crown Jewels - (1957) - shortstory by Poul Anderson
  • 413 - The Weapon Shops of Isher - [Weapon Shops of Isher] - (1951) - novel by A. E. van Vogt
Volume Two
  • 7 - Brain Wave - (1954) - novel by Poul Anderson
  • 120 - Bullard Reflects - [Bullard] - (1941) - shortstory by Malcolm Jameson
  • 131 - The Lost Years (Excerpt) - (1951) - shortfiction by Oscar Lewis
  • 166 - Dead Center - (1954) - novelette by Judith Merril
  • 187 - Lost Art - [Venus Equilateral] - (1943) - novelette by George O. Smith
  • 207 - The Other Side of the Sky - (1957) - shortfiction by Arthur C. Clarke
  • 222 - The Man Who Sold the Moon - (1950) - novella by Robert A. Heinlein
  • 293 - Magic City - [Meg] - (1941) - novelette by Nelson S. Bond
  • 322 - The Morning of the Day They Did It - (1950) - shortstory by E. B. White
  • 334 - Piggy Bank - (1942) - novelette by Henry Kuttner and C. L. Moore [as by Henry Kuttner ]
  • 356 - Letters from Laura - (1954) - shortstory by Mildred Clingerman
  • 361 - The Stars My Destination (1956) - novel by Alfred Bester
 

J-Sun

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Yes -- and if you are not fussy about dist jackets and Book Club editions, you can pick these up for a few dollars used.

Just so - mine are dust-jacket-less but I feel really lucky - I found V1 in a used book store for 2 bucks and, amazingly, found V2 in a different book store in its free bin. (Normally, I have to hunt around for ages for missing components of a set and, these days, I often give up and order the missing component for quite a bit more than what I paid for whatever triggered the situation (though still not usually for a whole lot).
 

Extollager

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In Silverberg's Science Fiction Hall of Fame volume for the greatest sf short stories, Simak's "Huddling Place." Deserves at least 4/5, a really fine, convincing story. Simak economically depicts an ironic complication due to human need and "weakness" persisting despite the technological conquest of space travel, and delivers a further irony in the unlooked-for ending.
 

Extollager

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Here I have an interlibrary loan copy of William Sloane's thick 1954 anthology, Stories for Tomorrow: An Anthology of Modern Science Fiction. Publisher was Funk and Wagnalls. The copy I have has no jacket (but it is in the original binding). Dustwrapper art:
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Sloane is remembered for a couple of novels from 1937 and 1939, To Walk the Night and The Edge of Running Water, which many readers today would find unbearably prolix. The anthology contains his sole short story (so far as I know), "Let Nothing You Dismay." The book's acknowledgements indicate sources of reprints, but I didn't see anything for this story, so I'd tentatively infer the anthology is its first and only printing. It's a human interest story from a young mother's point of view as a number of spaceships, including the one in which she travels, have fled Earth to escape the sun going nova. They have landed on a planet without a lot of knowledge of what may await them. The story is not really about the new world but rather about the importance of hope. I liked it, but I can see why editors of sf magazines might turn it down. It might actually have gone better in an issue of the Saturday Evening Post (which, let it be remembered, did occasionally print sf, including so unsparing a work as John Christopher's No Blade of Grass). Incidentally, the Sloane anthology includes a Christopher short story, which may be the next item I'll read.

--Wait: I see that Sloane says "Let Nothing You Dismay" was inspired by the anthology's dust jacket art; so we need not infer that Sloane had shopped it to any magazine editors.
 

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