Saturday, June 13, 2020

Bookshelf Traveling for Insane Times, June 13, 2020

I am participating in the Bookshelf Traveling For Insane Times meme, hosted by Judith at Reader in the Wilderness. Judith's latest Bookshelf Traveling post is here.

Today I take a look at another partial bookshelf of my unread books. If you click on the image of the shelf, you will be able to read more of the titles.

The book on the far right is a Library of America boxed set of two omnibuses containing a total of nine science fiction novels. Titled: American Science Fiction: Nine Classic Novels of the 1950s, edited by Gary K. Wolfe. It is a beautiful boxed set and I just could not resist it.

I will return to that set of novels next week.

Next to that is another Library of America boxed set, this time consisting of 8 books: Women Crime Writers: Eight Suspense Novels of the 1940s & 50s, edited by Sarah Weinman.

The books included are:

  • Laura by Vera Caspary (1943)
  • The Horizontal Man by Helen Eustis (1946)
  • In a Lonely Place by Dorothy B. Hughes (1947)
  • The Blank Wall by Elisabeth Sanxay Holding (1947)
  • Mischief by Charlotte Armstrong (1950)
  • The Blunderer by Patricia Highsmith (1954)
  • Beast In View by Margaret Millar (1955)
  • Fools’ Gold by Dolores Hitchens (1958)

Of those books I have only read Laura by Vera Caspary. I have read other books by Margaret Millar, Patricia Highsmith, Charlotte Armstrong, and Dorothy B. Hughes, but the other three authors are new to me.

Placed atop those two omnibus collections is ...
ASTOUNDING: John W. Campbell, Isaac Asimov, Robert A. Heinlein, L. Ron Hubbard, and the Golden Age of Science Fiction,  by Alec Nevala-Lee.

The subtitle pretty much describes the book. I think it could be interesting.

See Rick Robinson's thoughts on the book at Tip the Wink.

Michael Dirda reviewed the book at the Washington Post.

This shelf is too full of interesting books to cover in just one post, but I will include some information on two more books here.

The Half-Child by Angela Savage

Savage is an Australian author. This novel is the second in a series of three books about Jayne Keeney, a private investigator living in Bangkok. I read the first book in this series, Behind the Night Bazaar. I enjoyed it very much, and learned a lot from it. Angela Savage's writing about this area feels authentic because she lived in Southeast Asia for six years in the 1990's. Published in 2012.

The Maidens' Trip by Emma Smith

I think of this as a nonfiction book, but I believe it is actually a fictionalized memoir of experiences the author had, with some added characters. Originally published in 1948.

I learned about this book at Clothes in Books.

From the description at Amazon:
In 1943 Emma Smith joined the Grand Union Canal Carrying Company under their wartime scheme of employing women to replace the boaters. She set out with two friends on a big adventure: three eighteen-year-olds, freed from a middle-class background, precipitated into the boating fraternity. They learn how to handle a pair of seventy-two foot-long canal boats, how to carry a cargo of steel north from London to Birmingham and coal from Coventry; how to splice ropes, bail out bilge water, keep the engine ticking over and steer through tunnels.


pattinase (abbott) said...

I have read all of the ones in Sarah's collection except Blunderer. But not too much else on this shelf.

Margot Kinberg said...

So glad to see you have Angela Savage's The Half-Child, Tracy. Her Jayne Keeney novels are excellent, I think. I like your other books, too, and the variety in what you have.

TracyK said...

Patti, this shelf is a hodge-podge of books. Looking at it again, I see one of Naomi Hirahara's books is there, but not the next one I am due to read. Which is Snakeskin Shamisen. I her books on shelves here and there to remind me to read them soon, but it isn't working too well.

TracyK said...

Margot, you are the person who introduced me to Angela Savage's books, and I thank you for that. There is a good bit of variety on this shelf.

Rick Robinson said...

Hodge-Podge is right, there is certainly a wide variety of genres, sub-genres, you name it. Thanks for the plug for my (not very positive) review, primarily because ASTOUNDING wasn't what I wanted it to be, I think. I've read just three of the books in the LoA women's thriller collection. We have the DVD of Laura here right now from Netflix. I look forward to more comments on this shelf.

TracyK said...

Rick, what a coincidence that you have Laura on DVD from Netflix. We watched that shortly after I read the book and enjoyed it a lot. Glen had seen it before, I may have but it was long ago.

I felt like your review and the Dirda review combined to give a good overview of what to expect from ASTOUNDING. I will read it someday.

Neeru said...

I think I have the Women Crime Writer Vols. Must search where I have kept them. Didn't know you were so fond of sci-fi, Tracy. Happy Reading.

TracyK said...

Neeru, mystery is always my primary choice but I do enjoy science fiction and fantasy, especially when there is also an element of mystery. My son encourages me to read some fantasy and some types of science fiction, also. But between science fiction and fantasy I do prefer science fiction.

Katrina said...

The only author there that I've read is Patricia Highsmith - years ago and I can't even remember which books of hers I read but I did enjoy them.

TracyK said...

Katrina, Highsmith's books are really a bit too dark and suspense-filled for me. At least based on the one I have read, Strangers on a Train, and what I have heard about others. But Strangers on a Train was extremely well-written, and I will be reading at least a couple more of her books, The Blunderer in this set, and one of the Ripley novels.

Judith said...

Hi Tracy,
I thought I left a post here last evening, but I guess not.
Last night, I was wondering if the novel Laura, published in 1943, was in any way connected to the film Laura of 1944, starring Gene Tierney, Clifton Webb, and Dana Andrews. And, do you know, I just looked it up and this film is based on the novel. I remember vividly watching this one on television when I was a teen. My mom watched it with me, saw the notice in the TV listings in the paper, and said, "We've got to watch this one tonight. You'll love it!" Of course, she'd seen it when she was not much older than me. A BIG memory. Have you seen the film by any chance? CREEPY, but ultra-good.
In fact tonight, I'm going to see if it's streaming anywhere.
Enjoyed your post!

TracyK said...

Hi Judith, I have done the same thing, sure I had commented on a post but didn't. I did check spam just in case but nothing there.

Yes, I have seen the film adaptation of Laura and I agree, a very good film, and creepy. we keep seeing bits of it on TCM and thinking we should watch it again too. The book is good too, written in an unusual structure but well-done.

Jack Deighton said...

Hi Tracy,
It's Jack from A Son of the Rock here.
I've been an SF fan all of my reading life. That nine book box set contains at least six I have read. All good stuff as I recall.

TracyK said...

Jack, I am glad to hear that you have had good experiences with some of those authors. I have read books by three of those authors (Sturgeon, Heinlein, and Bester) but the rest I know little (or nothing) about. I don't know why it took me so long to do some research on them.

I have always been a mystery reader, but I read a good bit of science fiction in my early twenties (so, 50ish years ago). After that, I did not read science fiction hardly at all until I started blogging (2012) and took part in several annual science fiction reading events at Carl Anderson's Stainless Steel Droppings. At the same time my son was encouraging me to read more science fiction and fantasy. Since then I have read some science fiction every year, some more than others.

col2910 said...

Nice looking shelf. Not much crossover with my own books. The Fleming and Margaret Millar. I still hope to read something by Victor Canning.

TracyK said...

Col, This shelf does have a lot of variety. I need to get back to Victor Canning, I haven't read anything by him in almost two years. Same for Fleming, I haven't read anything since Thunderball.