Pixel Scroll 5/16/19 Pixelate a Spherical Chicken

(1) FRAZETTA SALE BREAKS RECORD. Heritage Auctions reports that Frank Frazetta’s 1969 Egyptian Queen just sold for $5.4 million during the ongoing Comics & Comic Art Signature Auction (Chicago; 16–18 May). This is said to be a world record for comic book art, besting a record also held by Frazetta for Death Dealer 6 (1990; also sold by Heritage in May 2018) at a “mere” $1.79 million: “Egyptian Queen by Artist Frank Frazetta Sets $5.4 Million World Record at Heritage Auctions”

…The winning bidder does not wish to be identified at this time.

The painting has been in the possession of Frazetta’s family ever since it was created 50 years ago, and Thursday was the first time it was made available for private ownership in Heritage Auctions’ Comics & Comic Art Auction. In addition to a world record, the painting also set a house record as the most expensive item ever sold by Heritage Auctions, surpassing a luxury Dallas estate, which closed for $4.95 million in 2016.

(2) IN THE BEGINNING. At CrimeReads, Michael Gonzales, in “The Groundbreaking Art of Jim Steranko”, profiles the artist, whose crime novel Chandler has a claim to be the first graphic novel.

For a moment I just stared at him, as the man himself flashed me one of his trademark Kodak smiles. With his jet black perfect hair, G.Q. wardrobe, sunglasses and spit-shined boots, he was iceberg smooth. “How you doing over there,” Steranko said in his world’s greatest showman voice. I shyly glanced at him and back at the Chandler cover when I suddenly realized that the picture of that mean streets private dick was actually a self-portrait.

(3) ON THE IRON HOT SEAT. The Ringer’s Brian Phillips finds that George R.R. Martin makes an excellent vehicle for exploring all kinds of problems with the way writers are underrated, even now in the so-called Golden Age of Television: “Funny Hats and Lonely Rooms: Give George R.R. Martin Some Respect”.

…He’s become a tragicomic figure, a man whose story got away from him creatively and outgrew him culturally at the same time.

Got all that? Good. Now, can we take a minute to give him some damn respect?

If the relentless mediocrity of Game of Thrones’ final season has clarified anything, it’s how desperately this show has always needed Martin’s imagination. (God knows it hasn’t clarified character motives or the workings of fantasy elements or the rate-distance equations for determining travel time over continent-sized landmasses.) Without Martin’s storytelling gifts to guide the series—without his understanding of the characters he created and the world into which he set them loose—Game of Thrones has lost its way, and more than that, it’s lost its way without evidently knowing or caring that it has. The show still looks great, at least when you can see it, and it’s still full of hugely talented actors. Narratively, though, it comes across as a tourist wandering through its own story, pressed for time and always a little confused about what’s happening.

(4) FOOD OF ICE AND FIRE. Meanwhile, Delish ponders the less weighty question of “What Would Happen If Your Favorite Fast Food Chains Actually Did Exist In The ‘Game Of Thrones’ Universe”. “Starbucks in Westeros was just the beginning.”

Did you notice that while HBO said it was a craft services coffee cup chilling in the middle of episode four‘s most pivotal scene, Starbucks didn’t refute the internet’s insistence that it was a classic Bux cup? I did. That’s why I’m doubling down on my theory that there’s been fast food in Westeros all along. A lot of it.

(5) NEW EARWORM. Emperor Stardust plans to set everyone humming again at this weekend’s Nebula Conference.

(6) RUNNING AN AUTHOR KICKSTARTER. Kristine Kathryn Rusch devotes a Business Musings post to “Kickstarter Stress”.

… let me tell you our procedure for running a Kickstarter.

1. Pick a project that will work on Kickstarter

By work, I mean two things. Make sure that it’s something that people will want. And make sure it’s something you can do.

(7) A MID-CENTURY COLLECTION. Bruce D Arthurs found another list of books I haven’t read many of: “Blast From The Past: 102 Great Novels, as of 1962-63”. My score is 16 out of 102. (There are a few more I bought at some point and tried to read without success.)

Among the papers of our friend Anne Braude, who passed away in 2009, I found a small pamphlet, a single folded sheet yellowed and brittle with age, that listed “102 Great Novels”. The pamphlet was distributed by the Scottsdale Public Library, and its list “COMPILED BY NELLENE SMITH, DIRECTOR”. Ms. Smith’s name dates the list to 1962 or 63 (thanks, Google!).

So, nearly sixty years ago, these were the books thought listing as “Great”.

(8) DONBAVAND OBIT. The writer Tommy Donbavand has died at the age of 52.

Tommy Donbavand was an authour and entertainer who wrote over 100 books for young readers, including the Scream Street series. He wrote the Doctor Who book Shroud of Sorrow featuring the Eleventh Doctor.

(9) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]

  • Born May 16, 1891 Mikhail Bulgakov. Russian writer whose fantasy novel The Master and Margarita, published posthumously, has been called one of the masterpieces of the 20th century. The novel also carries the recommendation of no less than Gary Kasparov. (Died 1940.)
  • Born May 16, 1918 Barry Atwater. Surak in “The Savage Curtain” episode. He did a lot of other genre work from Night Stalker where he played the vampire Janos Skorzeny to The Man From U.N.C.L.E.The Alfred Hitchcock HourVoyage to the Bottom of the SeaNight Gallery, The Wild Wild West and The Outer Limits. (Died 1978.)
  • Born May 16, 1937 Yvonne Craig. Batgirl on Batman, and that green skinned Orion slave girl Marta on “Whom Gods Destroy”. She also appeared in The Man from U.N.C.L.E.The Wild Wild West, Voyage to The Bottom of the SeaThe Ghost & Mrs. MuirLand of the Giants, Six Million Dollar Man and, err, Mars Needs Women. (Died 2015.)
  • Born May 16, 1942 Judith Clute, 77. Illustrator, painter and etcher. Artwork can be found on such publications as Polder: A Festschrift for John Clute and Judith Clute and The Entropy Exhibition: Michael Moorcock and the British ‘New Wave’ in Science Fiction
  • Born May 16, 1944 Danny Trejo, 75. Trejo is perhaps most known as the character Machete, originally developed by Rodriguez for the Spy Kids films. He’s also been on The X-FilesFrom Dusk till DawnLe JaguarDoppelganger: The Evil WithinFrom Dusk Till Dawn 2: Texas Blood Money, Muppets Most Wanted and more horror films that I care to list here. Seriously he’s really done a lot of low-budget horror films.
  • Born May 16, 1950 Bruce Coville, 69. He’s an author of young adult fiction. He has a number of series including Coville’s ShakespeareCamp Haunted Hills and Bruce Coville’s Chamber of Horror / Spirit World. He’s is also the co-founder of Full Cast Audio, a company devoted to recording full-cast, unabridged copies of YA literature.
  • Born May 16, 1953 Pierce Brosnan, 66. James Bond in a remarkably undistinguished series of films. Dr. Lawrence Angelo in The Lawnmower Man, lunch, errr, Professor Donald Kessler in Mars Attacks! and Mike Noonanin Bag of Bones.
  • Born May 16, 1962 Ulrika O’Brien, 57. A Seattle-area fanzine fan, fanartist, con-running fan, and past TAFF winner. Her APA list according to Fancyclopedia 3 is quite amazing —  Fringe, Widening Gyre, and Demi-TAFF Americaine (TAFF Newsletter). Her APAzines include Mutatis Mutandis, and APAs include APA-L, LASFAPA, Myriad and Turbo-APA.
  • Born May 16, 1968 Stephen Mangan, 51. Dirk Gently in that series after the pilot episode. He played Arthur Conan Doyle in the Houdini & Doyle series, did various voices for the 1999 Watership Down, and appeared in Hamlet as Laertes at the Norwich Theatre Royal.
  • Born May 16, 1969 David Boreanaz, 50. Am I the only one that thought Angel was for the most part a better series than Buffy

(10) OWNING IT. BBC quotes “Guardians director James Gunn: Disney ‘had right’ to fire me”.

Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn says Disney “totally had the right” to fire him over decade-old tweets that joked about rape and abuse.

He was rehired to direct the third instalment of the Marvel franchise in March, after the film’s stars signed an open letter asking for his return.

Gunn says he “feels bad” about some of the ways he’s spoken in public in the past and “some of the jokes I made”.

“I feel bad for that and take full responsibility,” he told Deadline.

(11) CRACK TO THE FUTURE. Let James Davis Nicoll explain why “The Luddites Were Right: SF Works That Show the Downside to New Technology”.

…Let’s examine the contrarian position: newer isn’t always best. And let’s take our examples from science fiction, which is dedicated to exploring the new…and, sometimes inadvertently, showing that the newest thing may not work as intended.

(12) SFF FROM A FILER. Joy V. Smith, a regular contributor to the letter column in File 770’s paper days, is out with her latest book, Taboo Tech.

Taboo Tech is a science fiction adventure; it begins with Lacie Leigh Collier saying good-bye to her parents, who leave her in her Uncle Sterling’s care. However, this family has secrets and is fascinated with discovering caches of ancient technology, most of which is forbidden and protected zealously by the Interstellar Guard. So when her uncle gets impatient–he’s supposed to be taking care of Lacie until she comes of age–and takes her with him while on an venture of his own and is pursued by the IG, he sends Lacie on her way, and she must make her way back home, with her own AI, the young Embers, and continue her education at the space academy and points beyond while wondering where her parents are…

(13) THIS TIME FOR SURE! Ehhh…. “Medieval manuscript code ‘unlocked’ by Bristol academic”

An academic claims to have deciphered a medieval manuscript which countless scholars including Alan Turing had been unable to decode.

The Voynich manuscript is a handwritten and illustrated text carbon-dated to the mid-15th Century.

The document is housed in the Beinecke Library at Yale University in the USA.

Dr Gerard Cheshire said: “I experienced a series of ‘eureka’ moments whilst deciphering the code, followed by a sense of disbelief and excitement.”

The manuscript is named after Wilfrid M Voynich, a Polish book dealer and antiquarian, who purchased it in 1912.

The script’s codex also baffled the FBI, which studied it during the Cold War apparently thinking it may have been Communist propaganda.

Dr Cheshire, a research assistant at the University of Bristol, said: “The manuscript was compiled by Dominican nuns as a source of reference for Maria of Castile, Queen of Aragon, who happens to have been great-aunt to Catherine of Aragon.

“It is also no exaggeration to say this work represents one of the most important developments to date in Romance linguistics.”

(14) RAWHIDE AND GO SEEK. Yesterday Ursula Vernon was on the road at an unholy hour to go help a friend “acquire a calf so that her cow will not be sad.”  (Thread starts here.) We also learned something new about sheep —

(15) SURVIVOR. Cockroaches surviving a holocaust is a staple of speculative fiction, but we know for sure “Bedbugs survived the dinosaur extinction event”.

A study that began as an investigation into the “utterly bizarre” way in which bedbugs reproduce has revealed they have existed for far longer than humans.

DNA samples from 30 species of bedbug revealed the insects had been around for at least 115 million years.

The blood-sucking parasites predate their earliest known hosts – bats – by more than 50 million years.

The surprising finding is published in the journal Current Biology.

(16) HUGO REVIEWS. Garik16 joins the throng of reviewers sharing their opinions of the finalists with “Reviewing the 2019 Hugo Nominees: Best Novel”.

I’d actually read all six Hugo Nominees when they were announced, though none made my nominating ballot (you can find that HERE).  Still, three of the nominees came close to making my ballot, so I’m not really dissatisfied with the results, even if my favorites didn’t make it.  There’s definitely some works I don’t really think are Hugo Worthy, though I can see how others might enjoy some of those more than I did.  But there’s a few clearly worthy potential winners here as well.

(17) TO THE LAST DROP. Quanta Magazine discusses the research that suggests “Black, Hot Ice May Be Nature’s Most Common Form of Water”. (Which reminds Daniel Dern of Jane Curtin’s Airplane coffee.)

Recently at the Laboratory for Laser Energetics in Brighton, New York, one of the world’s most powerful lasers blasted a droplet of water, creating a shock wave that raised the water’s pressure to millions of atmospheres and its temperature to thousands of degrees. X-rays that beamed through the droplet in the same fraction of a second offered humanity’s first glimpse of water under those extreme conditions.

The X-rays revealed that the water inside the shock wave didn’t become a superheated liquid or gas. Paradoxically — but just as physicists squinting at screens in an adjacent room had expected — the atoms froze solid, forming crystalline ic

[Thanks to Cat Eldridge Chip Hitchcock, Bruce D. Arthurs, JJ, Mike Kennedy, Martin Morse Wooster, John King Tarpinian, James Davis Nicoll, Daniel Dern, Carl Slaughter, and Andrew Porter for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Soon Lee.]

57 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 5/16/19 Pixelate a Spherical Chicken

  1. Re. Birthdays: I know Star Trek is the greatest show ever and all, but it still might be nice to mention the name of the show when mentioning episode names, for the sake of our younger readers–and the older ones whose memory for detail might be fading. (No names will be mentioned.)

    At least the number of times the Voynich Manuscript has been “really translated this time for real” is still smaller than the number of times the world has ended “this time for real”. 🙂

  2. I’ve got scrolls in my pixel and I don’t know what to do with them.

    I count 38 books that I’ve read on that mid-20th century librarian’s list. Or maybe 37 and a third, because I’ve only read 1919 from the USA trilogy.

  3. @Xtifr: Indeed. Twenty years ago, I could assume safely that a y pop culture reference that I recognized would be recognized by most people I ran into. But that changed as I got older, and now I try to be more aware that (for example) references to Wolfman Jack aren’t going to be recognized by everyone.

  4. @John King Tarpinian
    Most of those donuts sound really tasty. Fortunately it’s at least an hour’s travel away from me. (Orange Line to the Red Line to Hollywood/Highland)

  5. @3: I don’t know nearly enough about the business to say whether he’s right (and I haven’t watched GoT since binging on season 1 for the Hugos), but he argues with vigor and plausibility — and the recent episodes have been savaged by reviewers I trust. It’s certainly seeped into public consciousness — I heard a couple of people talking about it over weights at the Y last Monday — but I think I’m glad I didn’t waste the time watching the screen.

    @7: I think my score matches yours — I’m uncertain on a few titles so only count one of them. I’m amused that even a list from half a century ago, when Hemingway was still popular, typos The Old Man and the Sea (or maybe that was the transcriber…). ISTM that the list concentrates more on fairly old school-teachable works than a list today would.

  6. 11) would be more interesting if it looked at something like the internet, or social media rather than things we don’t have and mostly aren’t very likely to ever have.

  7. Andrew says Indeed. Twenty years ago, I could assume safely that a y pop culture reference that I recognized would be recognized by most people I ran into. But that changed as I got older, and now I try to be more aware that (for example) references to Wolfman Jack aren’t going to be recognized by everyone.

    Well it’s my Birhdays so it ain’t gonna happen and besides you did it with Wolfman Jack (grin).

  8. Filer brainpicking: Is the constant (and frequently technobabble-loaded) infodumping in The Atrocity Archives part of the pastiche thing (I’ve never read anything by, um, any of the authors listed on The Laundry Files’ wiki page, apparently spy thrillers not so much something I gravitate towards, but in this specific case, I’ve never read anything by Len Deighton) or is it just a newbie author problem thing? And can I expect them in the subsequent novels?

  9. (7) 24 out of 102. Nice to see Mary Renault on the list. I still reread some of her historical novels.

  10. @Meredith,
    It lessens as the series goes on. The PoV protagonist Bob is an IT Tech Support person, so the IT technobabble is in-character. Later on, Bob’s pre-occupation with tech support jargon lessens as his role changes. Also, Bob doesn’t stay the PoV character all the way through. We see the stories told from other characters’ viewpoints in the later books.

    I treated it the same way I did the infodumps in Tom Clancy’s techno-thrillers, or David Weber’s Honor Harrington books. They provide colour and I typically would skim over them.

  11. (5) NEW EARWORM.

    I’ve not got rid of the last one yet, dammit. All it takes to start it up again is to hear his name or see a picture of him.

    I am convinced that he is one of those mind-eating demons that Bob Howard warned us about. 👿

  12. (2) “whose crime novel Chandler has a claim to be the first graphic novel.”

    I’ve read Japanese graphic novels from the late 40s, and I think there are 30s examples as well.

    (Going by the definition of graphic novel as a comic-book narrative of substantial length, published originally in book form.)

  13. @Soon Lee

    I didn’t really mind the technobabble by itself, it was the technobabble-infused infodumps that were the problem, and it felt like they were turning up every ten pages or so. Including at least one that happened in the middle of an otherwise tense scene and I did not care because I’d rather have been hearing about the peril (see also: the inexplicable urge some tv&film writers have to put long, slow, heartfelt emotional conversations in the middle of action scenes). Technobabble is fine, infodumps I can skim — technobabble infodumps I can’t skim because I need to pay attention to keep track, and they weren’t interesting enough to me to make it fun.

    I have other quibbles — mainly with the character writing — but overall it was a reasonably fun time! Just. Not the infodumps. Happy to hear that tapers off.

    ETA: Whereas, for example, Trail of Lightning infodumps like crazy, especially near the beginning, and I generally enjoyed the infodumps because the content was interesting. YMMV!

  14. @7, like OGH, I’ve read about 16 of those books. Needless to say, I’ve read all of the SFnal ones on the list…

  15. Big Meredith Moment: The ebook version of Philip K. Dick’s Ubik is on sale for $2.99 at Amazon. It is unclear if any other vendors are participating on this deal.

  16. Re: Laundry
    The other significant thing is that the style changes avoiding to what Syria’s is pleasing homage to. I’ve read little Deighton, but I think the indigo’s are part homage, part hasty worldbuilding. The second book is more in the style of James Bond, and has less of it.
    After a bit the series stands on its own feet.

  17. 7) 11 out of 102, mostly because of Russian Studies classes in college. Speaking of…

    9) Happy birthday to Mikhail Bulgakov! My first tattoo was a quote from The Master and Margarita. In Russian, of course. If you have read (and liked) The Master and Margarita, I recommend Heart of a Dog. It is equally funny and about half as long.

  18. George R. R. Martin is 70. The release of his next Game of Thrones novel will be a huge cultural event when it occurs and one of the biggest books of his career.

    This makes me wonder something. What renowned SF/F authors released a major novel (relative to their other works) past age 70 without a co-author?

    The first one that comes to mind is Anne McCaffrey, whose The Skies of Pern came out in 2001 a few days after she turned 75.

    Frederik Pohl was still producing novels at age 91 in 2011 with All the Lives He Led, but I’m not sure I’d call anything he produced past 1990 as major. Perhaps the Eschaton trilogy published from 1996-1999 (The Other End of Time, The Siege of Eternity and The Far Shore of Time), but it doesn’t seem like they get included in discussions about his major novels.

  19. @rcade: Friday was published when Heinlein was 75 and it was a pretty big deal.

  20. @Chip —

    but I think I’m glad I didn’t waste the time watching the screen.

    I was a late convert to the show. And I agree that the complexity and depth have suffered seriously this season. OTOH, it’s still worth it for the spectacle alone. And I have never, anywhere, seen dragons done so well. I mean, these are DRAGONS. Every time I see one on screen my heart goes pitter pat.

    😉

    For anyone who hasn’t ever seen a single GOT episode, you really really ought to at least watch “The Battle of the Bastards” (no dragons, sadly!). Forget the story, forget what is supposed to be going on, and just glory in those visuals. Seriously. That episode had my mouth hanging open.

    @rcade —

    What renowned SF/F authors released a major novel (relative to their other works) past age 70 without a co-author?

    Cherryh?

  21. 9) Danny Trejo had a hilarious cameo as… himself?… in last week’s What We Do in the Shadows.

  22. Based on an estimated release date of mid-2020 for Winds of Winter, I have done a simple linear regression using the publication dates of the volumes of ASOIAF to date to determine the likely publication date for Dream of Spring. It’s 2032. In which year GRRM will be 83. Given his predilection for working on multiple projects simultaneously, combined with the obvious waning of energy and focus that inevitably comes with old age, I feel confident in predicting that GRRM will never finish the core septology of ASOIAF.

    Please understand that I am not dogging the guy for this. He’s living his life exactly as he wants to live it (at least insofar as I, a distant observer, can determine) and how many amongst us can say the same? I certainly cannot. I’m just disappointed is all. I started the series just after Dance with Dragons came out and was excited and enchanted. Couldn’t wait to read how it all turned out. Now it looks like the HBO show is the only resolution I’ll get, and – for me – that sucks. Because as the later seasons show all too clearly, the narrative significantly deteriorated once bereft of GRRM’s imagination. Not that GRRM knows how I feel or should care even if he did. But I would wager everything I possess that there are millions of fans who feel as I do and will feel some small measure of resentment towards GRRM, no matter how unreasonable such an attitude may be, if he does not finish. I do not plan to read WoW when it comes out, because why should I? It’s just the next book in a series that will probably never be completed. Maud Muller, indeed.

  23. I enjoyed Chandler, though it is somewhat shallow, but it is not the first graphic novel or the 2nd or the 10th. What about A Contract with God by Will Eisner? What about God’s Man by Lynd Ward? What about The Beast is Dead? What about He Done Her Wrong by Milt Gross? I’m pretty sure it’s from the 20s.I would also wager that earlier examples can be found.

    My computer is in the shop for a while, so I can’t research any of these, except that He Done Her Wrong dates from 1930. Finally found my copy. Got to send. Sorry for typos. Phone.

  24. Clifford Simak (born in 1904), Project Pope (1981), Locus winner and Hugo finalist

  25. GiantPanda says Clifford Simak (born in 1904), Project Pope (1981), Locus winner and Hugo finalist

    I assume you don’t mean he was born today as he’s an August Birthday. I’m rather fond of Way Station and City myself. Though Cemetery World ain’t half bad either.

  26. To those geriatrics already listed, add Jack Vance, Jack McDevitt, Jack Williamson, Greg Benford, Nancy Kress, Eleanor Arnason.

    We’ll have to see about John Varley and Joe Haldeman.

    I can testify that for non-fiction, anyway, the writing life continues unabated well into the eighth decade.

  27. @Kip: I try to avoid discussions of what is or isn’t a graphic novel, as it’s a very nebulous term, but yeah there certainly are a lot of candidates earlier than Steranko’s book. A Contract with God isn’t one of them though, as it came out two years later. Chandler: Red Tide‘s possible distinction is that it may have been the first to use the specific words “graphic novel” in the front matter, as opposed to “picture novel”, “visual novel”, “woodcut novel”, etc… so for someone who cares about that phrase more than I do, I guess that’s something. But it was also the third in a series of books in essentially the same format.

  28. Le Guin’s Annals of the Western Shore were published when she was in her mid-seventies. (I liked Changing Planes, which she also published when she was past 70, but that’s a collection of loosely connected stories, not a novel.)

  29. @Cat: Sorry for not clarifying. Simak was not meant to be a birthday addition, but referring to rcade’s question about major novels with authors in their 70s.

    I loved Way Station, and Grotto of the Dancing Deer is one of the best short stories ever. City missed for me where the other two hit.

  30. The book’s not SF/F so I won’t review it here, but The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion is a charmingly funny light novel about a neurodivergent prof who believes he can find love if enough women fill out his detailed questionnaire. The character is so much like Sheldon Cooper I couldn’t help but “hear” the book in Jim Parsons’ voice.

  31. Angel is 50? How did that happen?

    And a year younger than me? How the hell did that happen?

    The Laundry series is a bit erratic, starts off with the first few books being pastiche, then finds its stride, then goes to other POV (some more enjoyable/succesfull than others). I found the latest installment was a return to form, OMMV. nygubhtu obgu gur znva punenpgref unir cbjre perrc. Abg dhvgr gb gur rkgrag bs Bpgbore Qnlr, jub fubhyq ol abj unir rirel cheroybbq snvevr thaavat sbe ure nf na rkvfgragvny guerng gb gurve cbjref naq irel rkvfgnapr.

  32. 7) (Not genre, is that allowed?) Interesting that Light in August is the Faulkner entry. It’s definitely still included in the group that is something like “Faulkner’s undisputed masterpieces” but these days it’s generally relegated to “lesser masterpiece” status in favor of (usually) The Sound and the Fury and/or As I Lay Dying. I for one love Light in August.
    22/102 BTW

  33. Thanks for linking my Hugo post, Mike! Now I have to read the material I’ve missed in the other categories….

  34. rcade: What renowned SF/F authors released a major novel (relative to their other works) past age 70 without a co-author?

    James E. Gunn’s Transcendental trilogy was published when he was aged 90-94. It don’t think the books got a huge amount of fanfare, but both Paul di Filippo and I thought that they were really, really good, and Kirkus gave the first one a Starred Review and called it “quite possibly his best ever”.

  35. @Contrarius: as a longtime Cherryh fan, I am mortified that I didn’t think of her immediately.

    And ISFDB tells me Tepper was older than Wolfe; she wasn’t as universally praised by the cognoscenti, but at least one of her 6 post-70 novels should be notable.

  36. (7) I’ve read 39 of them, I attempted (or at least purchased) 15 more, and there are 15 beyond that I’ve at least heard of. So out of 102, I’m not surprised to see 69 of them. Since this wasn’t a list of the greatest books but only one person’s thoughts of a list of great books, maybe that’s not too bad. Pity we can’t compare the results with someone who looked at that list when it was brand new.

    Compare and contrast to the Modern Library’s list of the top 100 novels of the 20th Century, which came out around 2000.

  37. 7) I was just starting college when the list was new and can only claim 19.* And only 17 of the Modern Library list. But then, I’ve never pretended to be in love with the canonical fiction of any century before my own.

    * There are at least a dozen titles I’ve never heard of, and a couple of writers I recognize as being on the highbrow side of popular from my reading of Saturday Review back then. And a couple of best-sellerish items I remembere from my aunt’s shelves, such as the Waltari and the du Maurier.

  38. I think the only Canadian work on the list is The Watch That Ends The Night by Hugh MacLennan. MacLennan was considered a major writer in his day, in the Canadian context, but I’ve never read any of his work and it’s my impression that he’s not much read any more.

  39. @Cat:

    Well it’s my Birhdays so it ain’t gonna happen and besides you did it with Wolfman Jack (grin).

    No problem.

    To elaborate about the Wolfman Jack thing – a few years ago, my son was watching “Curious George” with a caregiver (an actual adult), and she didn’t recognize that “Howling Hal” the DJ (https://curious-george.fandom.com/wiki/Bonny_Smooth) was a reference to “Wolfman Jack” – to me, Wolfman Jack was a major pop cultural figure (he appeared in “Wonder Woman,” “Emergency” and “The Odd Couple”).

  40. Wolfman Jack was also featured in the film American Graffiti, for what it’s worth.

  41. Wolfman Jack was also in Battlestar Galactica ’80, which makes him definitely genre.

    Actually, American Graffiti and Battlestar Galactica ’80 are the reason I know who Wolfman Jack is at all, because his radio show never ran in Germany.

  42. @Greg Hullender: I also recognize almost 2/3 of each list — but read? No (~16 for both), and (extending your question about the old list) I wonder how many of that ML list would be on a list 50 or 100 years from now.

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