Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Latest Titles in Valancourt's Paperbacks from Hell Line & Other Stuff!

You asked for it and you got it! Due to high demand, Valancourt Books is publishing several more titles in their line of vintage horror reprints of books featured in my and Grady Hendrix's Paperbacks from Hell (Quirk Books, 2017). One is a reprint of a reprint, if you will: Joan Samson's 1975 classic The Auctioneer, complete with its original paperback cover; another is Garrett Boatman's Stage Fright from 1988, which boasts one of the most striking of vintage skeletal covers (perhaps by Zebra skull-master David Mann?); and then there is Familiar Spirit, Lisa Tuttle's first novel, from 1983—although this edition will have the much better cover, by Lee MacLeod,  from its 1989 Tor reprint!

Be sure to head over to Valancourt Books to order and to ask any questions! I don't know if there will be anymore titles in the PfH series after these. I'll say it's been hard work for all of us, me, Grady, and the guys at Valancourt. When deciding which books to reprint there needs to be a perfect storm of quality and availability. Many authors are deceased, with book rights in the wind; others don't want to be bothered about work they did three or four decades ago; some (or extant family members) want too much money; often initial inquiries go utterly ignored; and some titles are available as ebooks which prevents Valancourt from reprinting them; more commonly, we simply don't like the books we thought we might! That's just how it is.

Otherwise I've been using my stay-at-home time productively: I've begun cataloguing my paperbacks! Been meaning to do this for years. I'm using an Excel spreadsheet, nothing elaborate, although I've heard of other software and apps for cataloguing books, but at this point I'm about 600 titles and am not about to start over! It's cool going back through paperbacks I haven't touched in years, and also a big help in updating my want list. Just in the past couple weeks I've added another dozen books to my shelves, having had some good luck finding stuff for reasonable prices. I splurge occasionally, usually because I'm tired of seeing the same titles on my want-list for years and years. And when I'm done with my horror titles I'll be moving on to mystery/crime, science fiction, and literature paperbacks as well.

Stay safe out there, gang, and I hope you're getting plenty of reading done!