The Adventures of Tom Bombadil

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22-23

[page 22] DONALD A. WOLLHEIM Ace Books, Inc. New York, N.Y. Dear Lin: Gee gosh wow! A fanzine from Lin Carter! And no loot needed to keep on getting it. Privileged me. [page 23] Interesting as one might expect. I don't agree with everything of course. Who'd expect one to? For instance, I found Philip K. Dick's latest novel, THE MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE, a thundering bore. I reject the theme, I don't understand the sick mentality that wants to bury itself in such a concentrated fantasy world, I suspect Dick of being fascinated by Zen negativism and Japanese obscurantism, in short I found the work strictly ugh. A fine talent gone to waste. Comparing it to THE SOUND OF HIS HORN is unfair. Sarban is deliciously erotic ... a real sado-masochistic compilation of sex fantasies. But I couldn't accuse Sarban of being in love with the Axis future ... Now for your best novels of 1962. What I object to is the cavalier omission of a lot of good novels published in Ace. ((Put us on the Ace reviewers' list and we'll see what happens ... magnificent library, hoo boy.)) For instance, I think John Brunner has not received the rating he deserves, as one of the consistently best present day writers: for entertainment, for ideas, for ability at storytelling, he is, to me, head and shoulders above Blish's tedious technique. TIMES WITHOUT NUMBER, THE SUPER BARBARIANS, SECRET AGENT OF TERRA, all deserve candidacy. Again, does not SECOND ENDING rate a 1962 challenge also, as an Ace 1962 release? ((Can't quite agree. Brunner is a talented gent, and shows signs of doing some first rate stuff -- THE DREAMING EARTH, reviewed in this issue, for instance -- but he hasn't yet come close to Jim Blish. Blish is uneven, but at his best he is up there at the top with Heinlein. As for SECOND ENDING, it was far inferior to the same author's HOSPITAL STATION, and read to me rather like a 1942 lead ovelette in _Thrilling Wonder_.)) Not to mention some notice of THE JEWELS OF APTOR as the work of an upcoming new talent? ((Quite right --bgood swashbuckling stuff. But our "Best of '62" list was supposed to be the very cream of the crop, not a general list of the dozen best.)) Speaking of Tolkien-type worlds, get hold of Jane Gaskell's KING'S DAUGHTER (English printing only, Hutchinson). Fine stuff, and the real brew. ((I read her STRANGE EVIL some years back, and it was pretty good; will order a copy of this one.)) Or watch for Andre Norton's WITCH WORLD, Ace, April '63. _Don Wollheim_

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