Book Acquired, 22-28 April 2019


I misread an advertisement for a Half Price Books tent sale as applying to everywhere instead of just the Citrus Heights location. Discovering my error, I of course didn’t bother to drive all the way up to Sacramento, but did check the Fremont SFF shelves just in case there was something I particularly wanted.

Novik, Naomi. Uprooted. Del Rey, 2015. First edition hardcover. Nebula Award and Hugo finalist for Best Novel; Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel. Supplements an ebook. I’m not hugely big on fairy-tale inspired stuff but I really liked this; it’s about a girl, a mage, and a corrupted forest.

Books Acquired, 15-21 April 2019

Too many books to stack safely, I think.

Monday night means free books from FOPAL, and when there are several shelves of SFBC selections? Yeah. The major limiting factor was the size of my book bin.

Anderson, Poul. Annals of the Time Patrol. Nelson Doubleday, 1984. First edition thus, SFBC hardcover. Omnibus collecting the Time Patrol stories published up to that point.

Anderson, Poul. Beyond the Beyond. New American Library, 1970. SFBC hardcover. A collection of various Anderson novelettes.

Anderson, Poul. The Earth Book of Stormgate. Berkley/Putnam, 1978. SFBC hardcover. A linked short story collection from Anderson’s Technic History.

Bear, Greg. Eon. Bluejay Books, 1986. SFBC hardcover. Shortlisted for the Clarke Award. First in a trilogy. No 12 on Mt. Tsundoku.

Benford, Gregory. Across the Sea of Suns. Timescape Books, 1985. [SFBC hardcover. Second in the six-book Galactic Center series. No 583 on Mt. Tsundoku.

Benford, Gregory. In the Ocean of Night. Dial Press, 1977. SFBC hardcover. Nebula finalist for Best Novel. First in the six-book Galactic Center series. No 582 on Mt. Tsundoku.

Brunner, John. The Crucible of Time. Del Rey, 1984. SFBC hardcover. Fix-up science fiction novel.

Brunner, John. Players at the Game of People. Nelson Doubleday, 1980. First edition SFBC hardcover. Predates the trade edition by two months.

Brunner, John. Stand on Zanzibar. Doubleday, 1970. SFBC hardcover. Hugo Award for Best Novel. A dystopian novel about the overpopulated future of 2010, with narrative techniques borrowed from Dos Passos’s U.S.A. trilogy. One of a small handful of Best Novel Hugo winners that I haven’t read yet. No. 4 on Mt. Tsundoku.

Brunner, John. The Stone That Never Came Down. Doubleday, 1974. SFBC hardcover. Science fiction novel.

Brunner, John. The Wrong End of Time. Doubleday, 1972. SFBC hardcover. Science fiction novel.

Disch, Thomas M. Triplicity. Nelson Doubleday, 1980. First edition thus [K10], SFBC hardcover. Omnibus containing Echo Round His BonesThe Genocides (1966 Nebula finalist), and The Puppies of Terra (supplements an Ace Double edition).

Donaldson, Stephen R. The Illearth War. Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1977. SFBC hardcover. Second in The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, the Unbeliever. Replaces a paperback copy. No 880 on Mt. Tsundoku.

Gerrold, David. The Man Who Folded Himself. Random House, 1973. SFBC hardcover. Hugo and Nebula finalist for Best Novel. No 933 on Mt. Tsundoku.

Gibson, William. Spook Country. Putnam, 2007. First edition hardcover. Second in the Blue Ant Trilogy. A nice copy that I’m surprised was free, although this had a large print run judging from what I’ve seen at used bookstores.

Gunn, James E. The Listeners. Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1972. SFBC hardcover. Shortlisted for the Campbell Memorial Award. Fix-up science fiction novel.

MacLeod, Ken. Engine City. Tor, 2003. 1st U.S. edition hardcover. Third in the Engines of Light trilogy. A nice copy except for a bit of dogearing. I should probably track down a copy of Dark Light at some point.

MacLeod, Ken. The Sky Road. Orbit, 2000. Trade paperback edition. Hugo finalist for Best Novel. Fourth and final novel in the Fall Revolution sequence. No 937 on Mt. Tsundoku.

MacLeod, Ken. The Star Fraction. Orbit, 2000. Second printing of the trade paperback edition. Shortlisted for the Clarke Award. First novel in the Fall Revolution sequence. This copy has a big “2 for £10” sticker on the cover from Blackwell’s Bookshops. N934 on Mt. Tsundoku.

McDevitt, Jack. Cauldron. Ace, 2008. Second printing of the mass-market paperback edition. 2009 Nebula finalist for Best Novel. Sixth in the Academy series. A tiny remainder mark on the bottom.

McDevitt, Jack. Chindi. Ace, 2003. Seventh printing of the mass-market paperback edition. 2004 Nebula finalist for Best Novel. Third in the Academy series. No 701 on Mt. Tsundoku.

McDevitt, Jack. Infinity Beach. Eos, 2001. Third printing of the mass-market paperback edition. 2001 Nebula finalist and Campbell Memorial shortlist for Best Novel.

McDevitt, Jack. Omega. Ace, 2004. Fourth printing of the mass-market paperback edition. Campbell Memorial Award; Nebula finalist for Best Novel. Fourth in the Academy series. No 702 on Mt. Tsundoku.

McIntyre, Vonda N. The Exile Waiting. Nelson Doubleday, 1975. SFBC hardcover. Nebula finalist. The book club edition predated the trade release by five months, but I’m not sure when this copy was printed; there was no gutter code on page 211 and the first printing would have “30R” there. It is a mystery.

Niven, Larry. The Ringworld Engineers. Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1980. SFBC hardcover. Hugo finalist for Best novel. Sequel to Ringworld. Replaces a paperback copy. No 295 on Mt. Tsundoku.

Pohl, Frederik. Starburst. Del Rey, 1982. SFBC hardcover. Expansion of the Locus-winning novella “The Gold at the Starbow’s End” (1972).

Sheckley, Robert. Mindswap. Delacorte Press, 1966. SFBC hardcover. Science fiction novel about switching minds for space tourism purposes.

Silverberg, Robert. Majipoor Chronicles. Arbor House, 1982. SFBC hardcover. Collection of linked stories that forms the second in the Majipoor series.

Silverberg, Robert. To Live Again. Doubleday, 1970. SFBC hardcover. Science fiction novel.

Silverberg, Robert. Valentine Pontifex. Arbor House, 1984. SFBC hardcover. Third in the Majipoor series, and last in the initial trilogy.

Simak, Clifford D. A Heritage of Stars. Berkley/Putnam, 1977. SFBC hardcover. Science fiction novel.

Simak, Clifford D. Shakespeare’s Planet. Berkley/Putnam, 1976. SFBC hardcover. Science fiction novel.

Simak, Clifford D. The Visitors. Del Rey, 1980. SFBC hardcover. Science fiction novel about aliens visiting Earth.

Simmons, Dan. Olympos. Eos, 2005. First U.S. edition hardcover. A more battered copy than I’d pay money for (with binding damage from page 337 onward), but it’ll still look good next to Ilium on the shelf.

Tiptree, James Jr. Up the Walls of the World. Berkley/Putnam, 1978. ISFBC hardcover. Tiptree’s first novel (having previously worked at shorter lengths), for which she declined a Hugo nomination. There’s a picture of the author on the back cover, which for some reason greatly amuses me.

Varley, John. The Ophiuchi Hotline. Dial Press, 1977. SFBC hardcover. Part of the author’s Eight Worlds setting. Replaces a paperback copy. No 848 on Mt. Tsundoku.

White, James. Ambulance Ship. Del Rey, 1979. First edition mass-market paperback. Fourth in the Sector General series. No 310 on Mt. Tsundoku.

Yulsman, Jerry. Elleander Morning. St. Martin’s Press, 1984. SFBC hardcover. An alternate history novel in which Hitler is assassinated in 1913. No 138 on Mt. Tsundoku.

Finally, one pickup from the Half Price Books in Berkeley that I stopped by on the way home from a hiking excursion:

Gaiman, Neil. The Graveyard Book. HarperCollins, 2008. First edition hardcover. Hugo Award for Best Novel; Locus Award for Best Young Adult Book. I had held off on picking up a copy of this for a while under the mistaken impression that the U.K. publication had priority, but finally looked up the publication dates myself and found that the U.S. edition was released on 30 September; the U.K. edition was not until 31 October. With that knowledge, this was fairly easy to track down. Another one of the small handful of Best Novel Hugo winners that I have yet to read. No 5 on Mt. Tsundoku.

Books Acquired, 8-14 April 2019


Friends of the Palo Alto Library book sale weekend:

Asimov, Isaac. The Foundation Trilogy. Doubleday, 1963. SFBC hardcover. Omnibus containing FoundationFoundation and Empire, and Second Foundation. 1966 Hugo Award for Best All-Time Series. I usually try not to buy book club editions, but this is one of the exceptions; it’s a big omnibus of books that are well out of my price range in first edition. Plus the ebook version is a questionably edited 1990s edition.

Bolander, Brooke. The Only Harmless Great Thing., 2018. First edition trade paperback. Hugo and Nebula finalist for Best Novelette. Supplements an ebook. I had some comments on this in my Nebula novelette roundup.

Boucher, Anthony (editor). A Treasury of Great Science Fiction, Volume 2. Doubleday, 1962. SFBC hardcover. The Discount Room had a massive selection of Science Fiction Book Club releases. As mentioned above, I usually try not to spend money on these, but I have a weak spot for really good collections. James Davis Nicoll mentioned Boucher’s Treasury in a recent post. It contains some great classic science fiction. Sadly the Volume 1 present was missing its cover and I do have to have some standards to stop my apartment from overflowing with more books than it already is.

Brown, Fredric. The Best of Fredric Brown. Nelson Doubleday, 1977. First edition SFBC hardcover. My other exception for Science Fiction Book Club purchases is for true first editions—in this case, the book club release predated the trade release by four months. The Ballantine / Del Rey Classic Science Fiction line of the 1970s is one of those lines that I pick up whenever I see reasonable copies at a book sale.

Campbell, John W. The Best of John W. Campbell. Nelson Doubleday, 1976. First edition SFBC hardcover. Similar to the Fredric Brown collection, except the book club release only predated the paperback by one month.

Gerrold, David. When Harlie Was One. Nelson Doubleday, 1972. First edition SFBC hardcover. Hugo and Nebula finalist for Best Novel. Predates the trade edition (a paperback original) by three months.

Le Guin, Ursula K. Lavinia. Harcourt, 2008. First edition hardcover. Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel. This was shelved as historical fiction by the book sale.

Knight, Damon (editor). A Science Fiction Argosy. Simon and Schuster, 1972. SFBC hardcover. Another of those great big anthologies that collect a lot of good classic science fiction.

Russell, Eric Frank. The Best of Eric Frank Russell. Ballantine, 1978. First edition mass-market paperback. See above for comments on this publication line; this is an example of the trade editions. (I don’t think this one got a book club release).

Shakespeare, William. King Henry V. Edited by J. H. Walter. Methuen, 1954. Second Arden edition hardcover. Another thing I like picking up at book sales: critical Shakespeare editions.

Silverberg, Robert. The Second Trip. Nelson Doubleday, 1972. First edition SFBC hardcover. Originally serialized in Amazing, July–September 1971. Predates the trade edition (a paperback original) by five months.

Silverberg, Robert. A Time of Changes. Nelson Doubleday, 1971. First edition SFBC hardcover. Nebula Award and Hugo finalist for Best Novel. Originally serialized in Galaxy, March–May 1971. Predates the trade edition (a paperback original) by two months. Because I am a dumbass, I managed to load this on my car atop some sticky clothing label tape that was impossible to remove without damaging the back of the dust jacket. Less disfiguring than it could be given that it’s white, but I’m still annoyed at myself about this.

Stross, Charles. The Apocalypse Codex. Ace, 2012. First edition hardcover. Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel. Fourth in the Hugo-nominated Laundry Files series, which is currently projected to run eleven or twelve volumes. Bob Howard visits America. The publication history of The Laundry Files is a bit weird so I’ve attempted to summarize it below.

Wells, Martha. All Systems Red., 2017. First edition trade paperback. Hugo, Locus, and Nebula Awards for Best Novella. First in the Murderbot Diaries, which currently consists of three subsequent novellas and an upcoming novel. Supplements an ebook. I mainly didn’t pick this up in print before due to laziness. The story of a secretly free security construct who’s too busy watching TV to go on a murder spree and realizes they might actually care about people. Highly recommended.


A Brief Note on First Editions of The Laundry Files

This is just the novels. For a complete list of fiction and reading order for The Laundry Files, see Stross’s website.

Book U.S. edition U.K. edition
The Atrocity Archives Golden Gryphon (HC)
1 May 2004
Orbit (PB)
June 2007
The Jennifer Morgue Golden Gryphon (HC)
November 2006
Orbit (PB)
6 September 2007
The Fuller Memorandum Ace (HC)
6 July 2010
Orbit (PB)
1 July 2010
The Apocalypse Codex Ace (HC)
3 July 2012
Orbit (PB)
19 July 2012
The Rhesus Chart Ace (HC)
1 July 2014
Orbit (HC)
3 July 2014
The Annihilation Score Ace (HC)
7 July 2015
Orbit (HC)
2 July 2015
The Nightmare Stacks Ace (HC)
28 June 2016
Orbit (HC)
23 June 2016
The Delirium Brief Tor (HC)
11 July 2017
Orbit (HC)
13 July 2017
The Labyrinth Index (HC)
30 October 2018
Orbit (HC)
30 October 2018
Lost Boys Forthcoming late 2020


  1. The Atrocity Archive was originally serialized in Spectrum SF #7-9 (November 2001–November 2002).
  2. The Atrocity Archives contains both The Atrocity Archive and “The Concrete Jungle”, an original novella.
  3. The Jennifer Morgue also contains the novelette “Pimpf”.
  4. UK copies of The Annihilation Score were available on 1 July 2015 at an author signing in Edinburgh.
  5. UK copies of The Delirium Brief were available on 12 July 2017 at an author signing in Edinburgh.
  6. North American copies of The Labyrinth Index were available on 20 October 2018 at an author signing in Toronto.

Rose Peak

Rose Peak (3817′)
7 April 2019
4:19↑, 3:36↓


I’ve been to the Ohlone Regional Wilderness a couple times, but never gotten to its highest point, Rose Peak. At 3817 feet, Rose Peak stands just 32 feet short of Mt. Diablo and is the highest legally accessible point in Alameda County. Previous excursions to the Ohlone Wilderness were from the Del Valle Regional Park; to switch things up a bit, I decided that when I tagged Rose Peak I’d do it from the Sunol side.

This past weekend was the first weekend of the year when Sunol Regional Wilderness gate hours extended to 8pm. Wanting to give myself an ample amount of time to finish this 19-mile hike, I decided that this would be a good weekend to go for Rose Peak while still using my Ohlone Wilderness Permit from last year; it doesn’t expire until 10 May. I got to the trailhead at 10am and set off; not from the visitor’s center, as is standard, but from Camp Ohlone Road, where parking was available.

It was a beautiful spring day, with green hills fed by our wet winter. Less beautiful was my Camelbak springing a leak maybe twenty minutes into the hike. Half my water supply was now dripping from my pants. That annoyance aside, the McCorkle Trail soon rose into the Sunol Wilderness and the crowds of people thinned out. After some nice single-track through the woods, I reached signpost 19 and a gate towards camping areas. Past this gate, there was almost nobody except me and the cows.

The Ohlone Wilderness Trail winds its way up through San Francisco Water Department land and then reaches the Ohlone Regional Wilderness proper. This area was full of blooming wildflowers fed by the recent rains. Fortunately, it wasn’t too muddy except where cows had trampled the trail. I had to dodge around a couple cow groups that were intent on blocking the trail (and of course, plenty of cow pies left on the trail), but the open serpentine grasslands of this area make that easy. There are some great views of the back side of the Mission Peak area.

After a bit of a dip to cross the South Fork of Indian Creek (2800′), it’s a couple miles uphill to the summit of Rose Peak. It might not be the highest point of Alameda County, but it has better views than the true high points due to a paucity of trees at the top. You can see Mt. Diablo, Mt. Hamilton, the Santa Cruz Mountains, the South Bay, and many other points of interest. The Ohlone Wilderness trail map has a good compass indicator of what’s in sight.

The summit register was a complete mess of loose papers. I found a usable pen and a bit of space to sign in. I noted my nominal completion of the Everest by the Bay peak list, although I’m not sure it really counts; I usually took shorter routes than those described. On the other hand I’m pretty sure I have gained more than thirty thousand feet in climbing various Bay Area peaks, so whatever.

I started back at about 3pm; the journey back was uneventful except for a quick view of a coyote running by in the distance. When I got back to the Sunol Regional Wilderness, I detoured once past the gate at signpost 19 to Camp Ohlone Road. It’s much more boring than the McCorkle Trail, but I was okay not reascending a couple hundred feet. I got back to my car a bit after 6:30pm, well before closing time, and headed home.


San Francisco Bay Area Nifty Ninety: 73/90
California Coastal Peak List:

Books Acquired, 1-7 April 2019


My annual “cruise the used bookstores right after Hugo finalists are announced” wasn’t particularly successful in turning up this year’s Hugo finalists. However, it did turn up:

Banks, Iain M. The Algebraist. Orbit, 2004. First edition hardcover, with jacket in protective cover. Hugo finalist—perhaps surprisingly, the author’s only. Replaces a U.S. trade paperback. Banks’s third non-Culture science fiction novel.

Bishop, Michael. Blooded on Arachne. Arkham House, 1982. First edition hardcover (with a print run of 4,081), with jacket in protective cover. Bishop’s first short fiction collection, which includes, among others, the title story, “Cathadonian Odyssey”, “On the Street of the Serpents”, and “The White Otters of Childhood”.

Henderson, Zenna. Ingathering: The Complete People Stories. NESFA Press, 2011. Ninth printing of the first edition hardcover, with jacket in protective cover. The definitive edition of the author’s People stories, originally published between 1952 and 1980.