Thursday, May 17, 2012

Early Del Rey (SF Book)

Mars. Dog People. Ape People. Wars. Brownies. Rockets. Rivals. Elves. Skulls. Plenum. Loops. Soldiers. Memories. Consciousness. Robots. Plagues. Apocalypse. Mutations. Teleportation. Time Travel. 

Early Del Rey by Lester Del Rey is an anthology of 24 short stories that have not be published in other books. The stories were originally published in pulp, science fiction magazines. Woven throughout the book is a description of Del Rey’s career from the time he sold his first story in 1938 to the time he became a full-time writer in 1950.

These are not Del Rey’s best works. There is something unrewarding about finishing a short story only to be told on the next page what was wrong with it. Yet, I found the book worthwhile for a number of reasons. It gave me a taste of the Golden Age of Science Fiction.  I was able to see how WWII affected the science fiction community. I learned more about the influence of John Campbell, one of the Godparents of modern science fiction. Lastly, most of the stories were actually enjoyable.

While I won’t recommend Early Del Rey, diehard science fiction fans might enjoy it.

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