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Events and News from Borderlands Books

JUNE, 2004

Chapter One - Event Information, News, and Special Features

Donald Sidney-Fryer, GASPARD DE LA NUIT,  Friday, June 18th at 7 pm

A MIDSUMMER NIGHTS' READ, Saturday, June 19th - Sunday, June 20th, Dusk 'til Dawn

Kage Baker, author of MOTHER AEGYPT AND OTHER STORIES, and John Varley, author of RED THUNDER, Saturday, June 26th at 2 pm

(for more information check the end of this section)


June 10th is Ripley's birthday.  She will be two years old.  We're not having a party or anything, because cats are vain enough to dislike it when you point out that they're getting older, but do stop by and give her a surreptitious scritch.

We have just purchased a large collection of titles from three classic ghost story publishers, many of which are out of print.  We are in the process of inventorying them but we thought that we would give our newsletter readers a sneak preview.  Some are quite rare and we only have one copy of each, so if you are interested in a specific title, please drop us an email at once.  We will hold any titles requested in this fashion for one week while awaiting payment arrangements.  The complete list of these Ash-Tree Press, Tartarus Press and Sarob Press titles that we have available can be found at the very end of this post after the new arrivals section.

From the Orbit, UK web site, we understand that book eleven in Robert Jordan's epic series THE WHEEL OF TIME is due for release in October 2005.  The title will be KNIFE OF DREAMS.

Also, the new Iain M. Banks novel, THE ALGEBRAIST, is due October
2004.  We're not sure if it's a Culture novel, but it's definitely science fiction.  You can reserve a copy now, and while you're waiting, enjoy this review from ( ):
"It is 4034 AD. Humanity has made it to the stars. Fassin Taak, a Slow Seer at the Court of the Nasqueron Dwellers, will be fortunate if he makes it to the end of the year.

The Nasqueron Dwellers inhabit a gas giant on the outskirts of the galaxy, in a system awaiting its wormhole connection to the rest of civilization. In the meantime, they are dismissed as decedents living in a state of highly developed barbarism, hoarding data without order, hunting their own young and fighting pointless formal wars. Seconded to a military-religious order he's barely heard of - part of the baroque hierarchy of the Mercatoria, the latest galactic hegemony - Fassin Taak has to travel again amongst the Dwellers. He is in search of a secret hidden for half a billion years. But with each day that passes a war draws closer - a war that threatens to overwhelm everything and everyone he's ever known.

As complex, turbulent, flamboyant and spectacular as the gas giant on which it is set, the new science fiction novel from Iain M. Banks is space opera on a truly epic scale."

The spectacular Cory Doctorow, formerly a local author, will be popping in around the 19th of the month to inscribe books.  So if you have a hankering for a personalized copy of DOWN AND OUT IN THE MAGIC KINGDOM, A PLACE SO FOREIGN AND EIGHT MORE, or EASTERN STANDARD TRIBE, call the store or drop an email to Jude at

From the Office

When a customer comes to Borderlands and buys a young adult book, there's a good chance that book will never make it to a young adult.  I can't remember the last time that I sold a copy of THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH (intended for readers aged 9 - 12) to someone under the age of 25.  There is a reason for this hoarding of teen books -- many of the best books I've read lately have been young adult titles.  TITHE by Holly Black, FIREBIRDS edited by Sharyn November, A STIR OF BONES by Nina Kiriki Hoffman, GREEN ANGEL by Alice Hoffman, BLUE MIRROR by Kathy Koja, and most recently the soon-to-be-released PREDATOR'S GOLD by Philip Reeve, the follow-up to MORTAL ENGINES.  Fiction written for young adults seems to me more dynamic, more risky, and, on the whole, better written than its adult counterpart.  I believe that teens (to their credit) are less forgiving readers;  less willing to put up with meandering plots, less tolerant of unbelievable characters and dialogue, and less likely to stick with an author who has "phoned in" a book.   In addition, since teens are assumed to have less disposable income, YA books are usually several dollars cheaper than "regular" books.  What does this mean for you as a savvy adult reader of teen-aimed books?  Better books, at a lower price!

The point of this missive is simply to request, rail, and (if necessary) beg for the dissolution of the "Young Adult Novel Ghetto".   As a bookseller, I have previously found myself in the slightly bizarre position of recommending a fantastic book to a customer and simultaneously trying to downplay the fact that it's a young adult book, for fear that the YA label might dissuade the potential reader.  No more!  I will proudly state that some of the best books are young adult books, and frequently the distinction is irrelevant, the decision of someone in a marketing department who may or may not have read the book.  ENDER'S GAME, an undisputed genre classic, was recently re-released under Tor's young adult imprint Starscape.  It would be a travesty if ENDER'S GAME were to lose adult readers because of its YA cover.  Besides, the attitude that makes a reader say "Oh, no, I won't read that -- it's for teens" is exactly the same type of snobbishness that relegated genre fiction to disreputability for so long.  Even now science fiction, fantasy and horror is struggling with the stigma of being something that readers "outgrow".  So we -- the intelligent, literate, and unrepentant champions of great genre fiction -- must defend good literature, regardless of the marketing designation under which it may lurk.

_More YA authors to explore: Robin McKinley, Diana Wynne Jones, Darren Shan, Pamela Dean, Lloyd Alexander, Garth Nix, Philip Pullman_

 - Jude Feldman

Book Club Info

The Gay Men's Book Club will meet on Sunday, June 13th at 5 pm to discuss THE SPARROW by Mary Doria Russell. The book for July is THE LIGHT AGES by Ian R. Macleod. Please contact the group leader, Christopher Rodriguez, at, for more information.

The Classic Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Club will meet on Sunday, June 20th at 6 pm to discuss FIREBIRDS edited by Sharyn November. Ms. November will be participating in the discussion via speaker-phone. The book for July is LEGEND by David Gemmel. Please contact Jude at for more information.

Upcoming Event Details

Friday, June 18th at 7 pm, Reading and Signing of GASPARD DE LA NUIT with Donald Sidney-Fryer:
The following book blurb is a small taste of Donald Sidney-Fryer's new translation of GASPARD DE LA NUIT.

"So, Gaspard de la Nuit would be?..."
"Oh, yes! The Devil!"
"Thank you, my good man! If Gaspard de la Nuit is in Hell, may he burn there.
I shall print his book."

So wrote Aloysius Bertrand, the accursed poet from Burgundy, whose ground-breaking collection of prose ballads was published in 1842, a year after his death at 34. In GASPARD DE LA NUIT, you will meet Scarbo the vampire dwarf, Ondine, the faerie princess of the waters, and an unforgettable assortment of lepers, alchemists, beggars, swordsmen and ghosts.

This new edition has been entirely retranslated by renowned poet and literary historian Donald Sidney-Fryer, the author of SONGS AND SONNETS ATLANTEAN, who has also edited four collections of prose and poetry by Clark Ashton Smith. In his extensive introduction and afterward, Sidney-Fryer retraces the steps in Bertrand's life, casts a new light on his works and follows the elusive Gaspard from the Three Kings of Bethlehem to Casper the Friendly Ghost.

Saturday, June 19th - Sunday, June 20th, Dusk'Til Dawn:  A MIDSUMMER NIGHTS' READ:
Borderlands is throwing our first ever all night Summer Solstice party!  Starting at dusk June 19th and going on 'til dawn, June 20th, Borderlands' staff and customers will be reading their favorite fairy, fantasy and whimsical stories.  Drop on in for a bit or for the whole night to hear some great stories, quaff some nectar and partake in other goodies.  If you are interested in reading or telling a story, please give us a call or contact

Saturday, June 26th at 2 pm, Reading and Signing with Kage Baker, author of MOTHER AEGYPT AND OTHER STORIES, and John Varley, author of RED THUNDER:

Emperor Norton Award winning author Kage Baker returns to Borderlands to read from MOTHER AEGYPT, a collection of tales fantastic and dark.  Three worlds are presented here, and reading the stories in sequence will take you straight across their intersecting planes.  The collection includes “Mother Aegypt”: An original novella, written especially for this collection.  A confidence man, working his way across Transylvania, forms an unlikely partnership with a gypsy and her slave.  Possible vampires.  Immortals, definitely.  Aliens?  Well, I wouldn't go that far . . .

John Varley is a multiple Hugo, Nebula and Locus Award winning author whose prior novels include THE OPHIUCHI HOTLINE, TITAN, and STEEL BEACH.  Please join us as he reads from RED THUNDER, the story of “seven suburban misfits constructing a spaceship out of old tanker cars."  The plan is to beat the Chinese to Mars--in under four days at three million miles an hour.  It would be history in the making if it didn't sound so insane.

Borderlands event policy - all events are free of charge.  You are welcome to bring copies of an author's books purchased elsewhere to be autographed (but we do appreciate it if you purchase something while at the event).  For most events you are welcome to bring as many books as you wish for autographs.  If you are unable to attend the event we will be happy to have a copy of the author's books signed or inscribed for you.  We can then either hold it until you can come in to pick it up or we can ship it to you.  Just give us a call or drop us an email.  If you live out of town, you can also ship us books from your collection to be signed.  Call or email for details.

Chapter Two - Book Listings

Small Press Features

THE NEW NEIGHBOR by Ray Garton (Cemetery Dance, Signed Limited Edition Hardcover (1000 copies), $40.00)

OBLIVION by Jay Bonansinga (Cemetery Dance, First Edition Hardcover, $40.00)

DEATH'S DOOR by Michael Slade (Cemetery Dance, Signed Limited Edition Hardcover (750 copies), $40.00)

REVENANT SAVIOR by Dominick Cancilla (Cemetery Dance, Signed Limited Edition Hardcover (750 copies), $35.00)

MORBID TALES by Quentin S. Crisp (Tartarus, Limited First Edition Hardcover (300 copies), $50.60)

WORMWOOD LITERATURE OF THE FANTASTIC, SUPERNATURAL, AND DECADENT, VOL. 2 by Mark  Valentine ed. (Tartarus, TradePaperback, $14.71)

TARTARUS PRESS GUIDE TO FIRST EDITION PRICES 2004/5 by R.B. Russell (Tartarus, First Edition Trade Paperback  $32.03)

A LITTLE BLUE BOOK OF ROSE STORIES by Peter Straub (Borderlands Press, First Edition Undersized Hardcover, $20.00)

POSTSCRIPTS - SPRING 2004, NUMBER 1 edited by Peter Crowther (PS, Other Softcover, $10.00) - The long-awaited magazine from noted editor and publisher Peter Crowther.  Includes stories by Gene Wolf, Peter F. Hamilton, Ramsey Campbell, FD Gorman, Joyce Carol Oates, and Jay Lake.  This magazine promises to chart new territory within the genres of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror.  We also have a very limited number of the limited edition (only 150 copies) which is casebound (i.e. hardcover) and signed by all contributors at a price of $80.00

THE ATROCITY ARCHIVES by Charles Stross (Golden Gryphon, Hardcover  $24.95) - Two related long novellas, based on the world of "A Colder War" (one of the finest modern Cthulhu mythos stories of all time).  What could be better? - Recommended by Alan.

100 JOLTS - SHOCKINGLY SHORT STORIES by Michael A. Arnzen (Raw Dog Screaming Press, Trade Paperback, $12.95)

THE HEIGHT OF THE SCREAM by Ramsey Campbell (Babbage Press, TradePaperback, $18.95)

TERRY PRATCHETT: GUILTY OF LITERATURE by  Andrew M.  Butler ed. and  Edward  James ed.  (Science Fiction Foundation, Trade Paperback,  $16.00)

New and Notable

QUICKSILVER - THE BAROQUE CYCLE, VOL. 1 by Neal Stephenson (William Morrow, Deluxe Signed and Numbered Limited Edition Oversized Hardcover(1000 copies), $200.00) - This limited edition is simply gorgeous!  Silk bound boards and slip case, two color printing throughout, and, of course, archival quality acid-free paper.  This is bound to be a very desirable collector's item.  And, matching editions of CONFUSION and THE SYSTEM OF THE WORLD will be published at six-month intervals.

THE CHILD GODDESS by Louise Marley (Ace, Hardcover, $23.95)

DEAD TO THE WORLD - SOOKIE STACKHOUSE VOL. 4 by Charlaine Harris (Ace, Hardcover, $19.92) - The newest Sookie Stackhouse novel.  From Publisher's Weekly: ". . .Sookie finds that her bad luck has taken a new turn for the worse. Sookie's love interest, Bill the vampire, runs off to Peru to do research. In his place, Sookie is stuck with Eric, Bill's boss (and head vamp for the district), who appears out of thin air buck naked with no memory of who he is or what he does. Coincidentally, Sookie's brother Jason goes missing. Less coincidentally, but more ominously, a coven of witches (who also happen to be shape-shifters and vampire blood addicts) comes rolling into the nearest big city, looking for trouble. Consistent, well-built characters and a strong, action-packed plot that will keep readers guessing to the end distinguish this frothy fusion of romance, mystery and fantasy."

RED SLIPPERS- MORE TALES OF MITHGAR by Dennis L. McKiernan (Roc, Hardcover, $23.95)

UNEXPECTED MAGIC by Diana Wynne Jones (Greenwillow, Hardcover, $16.99)

THE LONELY DEAD by Michael Marshall (Harper, Hardcover, $19.05) - This is the British version of THE UPRIGHT MAN and there are significant textural differences.  In editor Steven Jones' opinion, this is the better version.

HAT FULL OF SKY - THE CONTINUING ADVENTURES OF TIFFANY ACHING AND THE WEE FREE MEN by Terry Pratchett (HarperCollins, Hardcover, $16.99) - Yes! Tiffany is back in this slightly darker sequel.  This time she's the apprentice of a witch who is one person with two bodies, and there's a mindless thing called a hiver that takes over Tiffany's body.  So it's the Nac Mac Feegles to the rescue, sort of.  Recommended by Jude.

THE HERO by John Ringo and Michael Z. Williamson (Baen, Hardcover, $24.00)

FORTY SIGNS OF RAIN by Kim Stanley Robinson (Bantam Spectra, First Edition Hardcover, $25.00) - We have a limited number of copies signed by Kim Stanley Robinson!

ABSOLUTION GAP - REVELATION SPACE 3 by Alastair Reynolds (Ace, Hardcover, $25.00)

FORGE OF HEAVEN by C.J. Cherryh (Eos, Hardcover, $24.95)

RINGWORLD’S CHILDREN by Larry Niven(Tor, Hardcover, $24.95)

GARDENS OF THE MOON - MALAZAN BOOK OF THE FALLEN 1 by Steven Erikson (Tor, Hardcover, $24.95) - Note for collectors - This is the first hardcover edition, though the British softcover edition predates by several years.

NEWTON’S WAKE by Ken Macleod (Tor, Hardcover, $24.95)

SONG OF SUSANNAH - DARK TOWER VOL. 6 by Stephen  King  (Grant, Hardcover, $30.00)

THE WILD WOOD by Charles De Lint (Orb, Trade Paperback, $13.95)

DEAD FUNNY- TOM HOLT OMNIBUS, VOL. 1 by Tom Holt (Orbit,Trade Paperback, $13.99) 

New in Mass Market

THE WAR OF THE FLOWERS by Tad Williams (DAW, Mass Market, $7.99) - If you liked the similarly-titled WAR FOR THE OAKS, you'll enjoy this marvelous stand-alone fantasy from Tad Williams.  It's dark and multi-layered and there are about 900 pages in which to lose yourself.  There is rock-and-roll, and there are haughty, beautiful elves and devious plots and world-shattering political changes and power outages in Faerie.  There are catty pixies and kinky nightclubs and a very ominous squishy character called the Remover of Inconvenient Obstacles. The not-very-calm eye of the storm is Theo Vilmos, a just-turned-thirty rock singer whose life has just gotten a lot more complicated.  I was delighted with this book --  one of those perfect summer reads.  Recommended by Jude.

WEE FREE MEN by Terry Pratchett (HarperTrophy, Mass Market, $6.99) - Read it! Love it! Lend it to your friends and never get it back! Thrill to the adventures of Tiffany Aching, who, armed with nothing more than an iron skillet, her copious wits, and the help of the small, blue, drunken and cursing Nac Mac Feegle(s), goes off to rescue her sticky little brother Wentworth from a nasty Faerie queen.  Highly recommended by Jude and Cary.

POSSESSIONS by James A. Moore (Leisure, Mass Market, $6.99) - Chris Corin has the unshakable feeling that he's being followed. And he's right. But he doesn't know what's after him, what waits in the shadows. He doesn't know that what his late mother left him in her will is the source of inconceivable power. Power that something hideous wants very badly indeed. By the time Chris realizes what's happening it may already be too late. Who would believe him? Who could imagine the otherworldly forces that will stop at nothing to possess what Chris has? No, Chris will have to confront the darkness that has crept into his life, threatening his very sanity. And unless he can convince someone that he's not crazy, he'll have to confront it alone.
Read the first chapter at < >.

GRIMMER THEN HELL by David  Drake  (Baen, Mass Market, $7.99) - It's by David Drake, and it's hysterically funny - believe it! - Recommended by Alan and Jude.

RED THUNDER by John Varley (Ace, Mass Market, $7.99) -
Yes! It's an old-fashioned Space Opera.  A group of teenage misfits of several races and economic classes join together with a former shuttle pilot and his idiot savant cousin to make a space ship (Red Thunder).  They succeed (of course) and make the round trip from Earth to Mars and back; performing rescues along the way. 

The writing is good and the story is fun as long as the reader accepts the device of the idiot savant inventor.  The story has some of the feel of the early Heinlein adventure stories.

The author includes in the development of the story points about religious fanaticism, child abuse, racism, drunkenness, and greed.  The points are not belabored and the serve the story rather than vice versa.

If you are fond of Space Opera, you will enjoy RED THUNDER.

Thank you to Guy Johnson for the review of RED THUNDER. Meet John Varley at Borderlands June 26th! (See event write-ups)

CORALINE by Neil Gaiman (HarperTrophy, Mass Market, $5.99)

SNARE by Katherine Kerr (Tor, Mass Market, $7.99)

DARKNESS - COREAN CHRONICLES, VOL. 2 by L.E. Modesitt, Jr. (Tor, Mass Market, $7.99)

SHADOW OF THE LION by Mercedes Lackey (Baen, Mass  Market, $7.99)

YEAR’S BEST SF, VOL. 9 by David G. Hartwell, ed. and Kathryn Cramer, ed. (Eos, Mass Market, $7.99)

REDEMPTION ARK by Alaistair Reynolds (Ace, Mass Market, $7.99)

THE GLASSWRIGHT’S MASTER by Mindy L. Klasky (Roc, Mass Market, $6.99)

CALLAHAN’S CON by Spider Robinson (Tor, Mass Market, $6.99) 
This newsletter is distributed monthly free of charge and may be distributed without charge so long all the following information is included.

Dispatches from the Border
Editor - Madeline Rugg
Assistant Editor - Alan Beatts
Contributors - Jude Feldman

All contents unless otherwise noted are the property of

Borderlands Books
866 Valencia St.
San Francisco, CA  94110

Comments and suggestions should be directed to