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Sunday, May 26, 2013

John Varley Cover Gallery

John Varley struck like a hurricane in the mid-1970s and immediately became one of my favourite writers with a run of fantastic stories: "In the Hall of the Martian Kings", "The Barbie Murders", "The Phantom of Kansas", "The Persistence of Vision", "Press Enter []" and many more. When I put together these little galleries, I like to think that they bring back a few happy memories for people who have read some of the books by the author's covered. Secretly, I'm hoping that if you've not read anything by one of the authors, you'll take a chance and pick up one of their books. If I have to limit myself, I'd have to suggest you get The John Varley Reader, which has a fine selection of stories. Read "Tango Charlie and Foxtrot Romeo" and tell me you don't want to read more. Then try to find a copy of The Barbie Murders so you can also read "Lollipop and the Tar Baby", which is one of his best, and "Bagatelle" which opens brilliantly and just gets better.

He's also written some fine novels. The Ophiuchi Hotline is set in a background partly shared with some of his shorter stories; Titan, Wizard and Demon are a trilogy with a giant alien artifact called Gaea; Steel Beach and Golden Globe are linked to the Eight Worlds background; Millennium was based on a short story which became a rather so-so movie; Mammoth is a stand-alone; but if you're going to start somewhere, try Red Thunder which has all the exuberance of Robert Heinlein's Have Spacesuit, Will Travel and you don't need to be into "sci-fi" to enjoy it. It's the first of a linked series (the stories are each set some time apart) which has reached three novels.

As with all these cover galleries, most of the images are British paperback editions. A few random other editions appear where there was no UK edition and I have the books. And one or two images are from Amazon.

The Ophiuchi Hotline (New York, Dial Press/James Wade, 1977) 
Futura/Orbit 0-7088-8020-7, Jun 1978. Cover by Chris Foss?
Gollancz 0-5750-7283-0, Aug 2003.

Titan (New York, Berkley/Putnam, 1979)
Futura/Orbit 0708-88044-4, 1979. Cover by Peter Andrew Jones
Futura/Orbit 0708-88044-4, 1985. Cover by Tim White

Wizard (New York, Berkley/Putnam, 1979) 
Macdonald Futura/Orbit 0-7088-0876-2, 1981. Cover by Tim White
Futura/Orbit 0-7088-8076-2, 1985. Cover by Tim White

Millennium (New York, Berkley, 1983)
Sphere 0-7221-8839-0, 1985. Die-cut cover

Demon (New York, Putnam, 1984)
Futura/Orbit 0-7088-8160-2, 1985. Cover by Tim White

Steel Beach (New York, Ace/Putnam, 1992) 
HarperCollins 0-586-21735-5, 1993. Cover by Bill Gregory. Trade PB.
HarperCollins 0006-47726-4, 1994.

The Golden Globe (New York, Ace, 1998)
Ace Books 0-441-00643-4, Oct 1999. Cover by Danilo Ducak
(no UK paperback)

Red Thunder (New York, Ace, 2003) 
Ace Books 978-0-441-01162-9, May 2004. Cover by Bob Warner
(no UK paperback)

Mammoth (New York, Ace, 2005)
Ace Books 0441-01335-X, May 2006. Cover by Matt Stawicki
(no UK paperback)

Red Lightning (New York, Ace, 2006)
Ace Books 978-0-441-01488-0, May 2007. Cover by Bob Warner
(no UK paperback)

Rolling Thunder (Ace, 2008)
Ace Books 978-0-441-01772-0, Sep 2009.
(no UK paperback)

Slow Apocalypse (Ace, 2012)
Ace Books 978-0-425-26213-9, Jun 2013. 
(no UK paperback) 

Dark Lightning (Ace, 2014)
Ace Books 978-0-425-27408-8, Apr 2015. Cover by Fred Gambino
(no UK paperback)

The Persistence of Vision (New York, Dial Press/James Wade, 1978)
as In the Hall of the Martian King, Futura/Orbit 0-7088-8036-3, Oct 1978. Cover by Tony Roberts

The Barbie Murders (New York, Berkley 0-425-04590-3, Sep 1980. Cover by David Plourde; also as Picnic on Nearside, Berkley, Jul 1984).
Orbit 0708-88097-5, 1983. Cover by Tim White

Blue Champagne (Ace Books 0-441-06868-5, Sep 1987. Cover by Todd Cameron Hamilton)
(no UK paperback)

The John Varley Reader
Ace Books 0-441-01195-0, Sep 2004. Cover by (Getty Images)
(not UK paperback)

Good-bye, Robinson Crusoe and other stories
Subterranean Press 978-1596-06528-4, Apr 2013.
(no UK paperback) 

Ace Books 0-441-00137-8, Jan 1995. Cover by Bruce Jensen
(no UK paperback)


Novels (series: Gaea)
The Ophiuchi Hotline. New York, Dial Press, 1977; London, Sidgwick & Jackson, 1978.
Titan (Gaea). New York, Berkley-Putnam, Mar 1979; London, Sidgwick & Jackson, 1979.
Wizard (Gaea). New York, Berkley-Putnam, Jul 1980; London, Futura, 1981.
Millennium. New York, Berkley, 1983; London, Sphere, 1985.
Demon (Gaea). New York, Putnam, Jun 1984; London, Orbit, 1985.
Steel Beach. New York, Ace Books/Putnam, Jul 1992; London, HarperCollins, Jul 1993.
The Golden Globe. New York, Ace Books, Oct 1998.
Red Thunder. New York, Ace Books, Apr 2003.
Mammoth. New York, Ace Books, Jun 2005.
Red Lightning. New York, Ace Books, Apr 2006.
Rolling Thunder. New York, Ace Books, Mar 2008.
Slow Apocalypse. New York, Ace Books, Sep 2012.
Dark Lightning. New York, Ace Books, Aug 2014.
Irontown Blues. <>

The Persistence of Vision. New York, Dial Press, 1978; as In the Hall of the Martian King, London, Sidgwick & Jackson, 1978.
(contains: Introduction by Algis Budrys; The Phantom of Kansas; Air Raid; Retrograde Summer; The Black Hole Passes; In the Hall of the Martian Kings; In the Bowl; Gotta Sing, Gotta Dance; Overdrawn at the Memory Bank; The Persistence of Vision)
The Barbie Murders and other stories. New York, Berkley, Sep 1980; London, Orbit, 1983; as Picnic on Nearside, New York, Berkley, Jul 1984.
(contains: Bagatelle; The Funhouse Effect; The Barbie Murders; Equinoctial; Manikins; Beatnik Bayou; Good-bye, Robinson Crusoe; Lollipop and the Tar Baby; Picnic on Nearside)
Tango Charlie and Foxtrot Romeo (bound with The Star Pit by Samuel Delaney). New York, Berkley (Tor Double 4), 1984.
Blue Champagne. Arlington Heights, IL, Dark Harvest, Jan 1986.
(contains: The Pusher; Blue Champagne; Tango Charlie and Foxtrot Romeo; Options; Lollipop and the Tar Baby; The Manhattan Phone Book (Abridged); The Unprocessed Word; Press Enter [])
Press Enter [] (bound with Hawksbill Station by Robert Silverberg). New York, Tor Double, Sep 1990.
The Persistence of Vision (bound with Nanoware Time by Ian Watson). New York, Tor Double, Jan 1991.
The John Varley Reader. New York, Ace Books, Sep 2004.
(contains: Introduction; Picnic on Nearside; Overdrawn at the Memory Bank; In the Hall of the Martian Kings; Gotta Sing, Gotta Dance; The Barbie Murders; The Phantom of Kansas; Beatnik Bayou; Air Raid; The Persistence of Vision; Press Enter []; The Pusher; Tango Charlie and Foxtrot Alpha; Options; Just Another Perfect Day; In Fading Suns and Dying Moons; The Flying Dutchman; Good Intentions; The Bellman)
Good-bye, Robinson Crusoe. Burton, Michigan, Subterranean Press, Apr 2013.
(contains: Introduction; The Funhouse Effect; Retrograde Summer; In the Bowl; Blue Champagne; Bagatelle; Equinoctial; Good-Bye Robinson Crusoe; Lollipop and the Tar Baby; The Black Hole Passes; The Unprocessed Word; The Manhattan Phone Book (Abridged))

Editor, with Ricia Mainhardt, Superheroes. New York, Ace, Dec 1984.

(* Originally published 8 November 2008, now updated with some additional information and images)

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