Visions of Paradise

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Authors I Would Like to Read More of (Part 2)

6. Louis L’Amour is regarded as the leading writer of westerns, but in my opinion he cannot compare to Elmer Kelton who is the true master of western fiction. Other western writers must agree with that, since Kelton has won 7 Spur Awards for Best Western Novel, far more than any other writers. The Day The Cowboys Quit is a story about cowboys on a cattle drive who resent their low wages, so they go on strike! The Wolf and The Buffalo is about the dealings between a black soldier and a Native American, a powerful character study. Those are the only Kelton novels I have read, and I am anxious to read other award-winning novels, such as Buffalo Wagons, The Man Who Rode Midnight and The Way of the Coyote, as well as his series about the founding of the Texas Rangers.

7. When I first discovered science fiction in my teens, I bought a novel called The Sioux Spaceman which I did not like very much. A decade later I bought another novel by the same author entitled The Jargoon Pard which I enjoyed a lot more, but for some reason I never read another novel by its author Andre Norton, a failing which I would like to rectify. High on my Recommended Reading list are The Stars Are Ours, Catseye, and her Solar Queen and Time Trader series. Baen Books have been bringing out her sf in two-in-one volumes, so I am hoping to buy one of them very shortly.

8. Many years ago Orson Scott Card had a review column in some fanzine in which he raved about a novel by new writer Robert Sawyer entitled Golden Fleece. Trusting Card’s judgment, I bought it and enjoyed it a lot. Since then, Sawyer has been a regular on the Hugo Award ballot for Best Novel, winning in 2003 for Hominids. But I’ve never read another Sawyer book, and would like to try some of his other award nominees such as Frameshift and Factoring Humanity. I’m not sure why I haven’t done so long before this.

9. I have a relatively small collection of Analog prozines, only 155 issues, most of which were given to me by a fellow teacher who was cleaning out his father’s attic. I have read several serials and short fiction in those issues, mostly by authors I already enjoy such as Poul Anderson and Gordon R. Dickson. Another author who was prevalent in those magazines was James H. Schmitz, whose The Witches of Karres was a thoroughly-enjoyable tongue-in-cheek space opera. So I read two other Schmitz’ serials in Analog, The Tuvela and The Lion Game, and enjoyed both of them enough that I would like to read some of Schmitz’ short fiction collections, which have also been published by Baen Books (and is it my imagination, but is Baen doing more to keep classic sf in print than any other mainstream publisher)?

10. In the first installment of this list, I admitted my shame at having only 4 books by Arthur C. Clarke in my collection. Well, that is double the number of books I have by another sf Grandmaster, Jack Williamson. I have an old Galaxy Magabook containing two novellas, and his collaborative Starchild trilogy, written with Frederik Pohl. No Legion of Space, no Humanoids, and none of his late-career renaissance novels, such as Terraforming Earth and The Stonehenge Gate. I really need to rectify this situation too.


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