Book Report: The Best from Fantasy and Science Fiction 14th Series edited by Avram Davidson (1965)

After reading Ancient, My Enemy, I was in the mood for some more science fiction short stories from the silver age of science fiction. This collection, apparently the 14th from the heydey of Fantasy and Science Fiction magazine (now back in print, apparently).

Okay, the book collects 17 short stories into 251 pages of reading, not counting the introduction that explains why it’s all relevant. It’s good enough short stories, and as I look over the titles, I can remember them after a week. Only one, “The House by the Crab Apple Tree” by S.S. Johnson, will stick with me at all.

Each story also includes what I suspect is the original intro bio bit from the magazine. It’s interesting how many of the writers really were journeymen, dashing off short stories for a tolerable existence. A couple of them are remembered today, but most aren’t. Probably only one or two of them made a really comfortable life of it. Such is the life of a real writer who has to do it for a living and not some dilettante writing short stories for fun. Today, those journeymen are working as business writers, copy writers, and technical writers, so their fame and recognition will be far more fleeting than the sales circulars and software manuals they’re producing as their life’s work.

Don’t get me started on the life of backwater bloggers whose daily hit totals have dipped under 100 again.

Thanks for reading, and come back tomorrow for more Christmas cheer the MfBJN way!

Books mentioned in this review:

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