Much as we anticipated, FANTASY REVIEW has come as a complete eye-opener to hundreds who, except for a few emasculated magazines or an occasional book discovered by accident, have been all too long isolated from their favourite literature. Its news of publishing developments of which they were unaware; its reviews of books they did not suspect were forthcoming in such appetising array: its reawakening of an interest which, in many cases, had almost died of attrition, have brought unqualified approval from its subscribers. Such a publication, they generally agree, is just what they needed to enlighten and advise them.
Even those few who were already alive to the fact of fantasy fiction’s increased fertility have welcomed FANTASY REVIEW as the only journal to cater adequately for their interest and enable them to keep pace with the rapid growth of the medium on both sides of the Atlantic. From the U.S.A. especially have come encouraging comments indicating that it has already assumed a unique position in the field which it covers. And, knowing the usual transitoriness of such publications on their side, these well-wishers earnestly beg us not to let this most promising of all journals devoted to fantasy fiction—"the best ever," they describe it—die a premature death.
But as yet we have only begun. And in spite of the special difficulties we have to contend with on this side in these days, we have no intention of suspending FANTASY REVIEW while there are readers to whom it is so essential to the maintenance of their hobby. Rather, we want to serve all fantasy’s followers more usefully, if we can; and there are many to whom we have still to reveal the healthy state of the medium and awaken their latent interest. A matter in which you can assist us, and enable us the quicker to enlarge the scope and contents of this magazine as we plan to do eventually.
Once they have seen this journal, we have no doubt that any who are at all aware of the pleasures of science and weird fiction. and of the subjects in which it deals, will want to ensure they receive FANTASY REVIEW regularly. If, therefore, you know of any who might welcome a specimen copy, let us have their names and addresses so that we may introduce it to them. At the same time, let us have your further comments and suggestions, so that we may make this journal of ever-growing interest to you. We want your opinions, your criticisms—your contributions. too.
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CAN SCIENCE FICTION PROPHESY?
What is the function of science fiction—prediction or entertainment ? Is it prophetic, or do some of its fantasies come true only by accident? In the Introduction and Preface to "The Best in Science Fiction," recently published in America, the editor, Groff Conklin, a distinguished literary critic, takes issue on this question withJohn W. Campbell Jr., editor of Astounding Science Fiction. Here are their arguments, for and against.*
"It Does," Says John W. Campbell
Science fiction is a broader field than the non-reader realises. Some is beautifully written, some is handled with the machine precision of logic and careful structure of engineering estimate. And some of the published material is completely bad.
FANTASY REVIEW (Incorporating SCIENTIFICTION and TO-MORROW--Magazine of the Future)
A Journal for Readers, Writers and Collectors of Imaginative Fiction BI-MONTHLY: SIXPENCE
Editorial, Advertising and Publishing Office: 15 Shere Road, Ilford, Essex.
Vol. 1, No. 2 Apr.-May, 1947
was not "Buck," and they were well and thoughtfully done. The Last one had an excellent dissertation on the military advantages of bazookas, though the author did not know the name later attached to the weapon.
* Condensed from The Best in Science Fiction, by permission of Crown Publishers, 419 Fourth Avenue, New York. U.S.A.
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those weapons will do to political, economic and cultural structures of human society.
"It Shouldn't," Says Groff Conklin
In 1889 Frank R. Stockton was writing for a new magazine called Once a Week. One of his pot-boilers was about a future war with Great Britain. It was called "The Great War Syndicate," and in it the author worked out a couple of new weapons against which, he felt, it would be impossible to build defences. One of them was a giant pincers which disabled British battleships by pulling their propellers out by the roots. Another was a cannon with miraculous powers.
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that you could learn what those actions will be by means of a time machine, a space warp, or some other unpatented gadget.
Your fantasy fiction Want Lists, and lists of magazines for sale or exchange, are requested by us. Fandom’s best prices and service are given by
FANTASY SERVICE 17 Burwash Road, Plumstead, London, S.E. 18
Ready May 1st:
THE LEGION OF SPACE
by Jack Williamson
A limited, illustrated, cloth-bound edition of this classic of Science Fiction, priced at $3.25, postpaid ($3.00 in the U.S.A. and Canada).
FANTASY PRESS, Reading, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
|FANTASY REVIEW||Volume 1 No. 2||page 5|
Condemning rigid editorial policies of science fiction magazines, Sam Moskowitz, prominent U.S. fan, revealed that seven writers or writer-teams produced 70 per cent of stories used by Astounding Science-Fiction in past three years. In the circle were man-and-wife A. E. van Vogt and E. Mayne Hull; also Henry Kuttner and wife C. L. Moore, writing as Lewis Padgett and Lawrence O'Donnell. Other stand-by’s: George O. Smith, with pseudonym Wesley Long; Isaac Asimov, Murray Leinster, Raymond P. Jones, the late Malcolm Jameson. That there’s so little scope for new writers, says Moskowitz, shows "formula is drowning inspiration'? . . . Meanwhile, Associate Editor L. Jerome Stanton reports "heavy snowfall of MSS." following tempting invitation to all comers in recent issue. Editorial told of "beaming smiles and great joy when a new, unknown author shows up with a bell-ringer. You do not have to be an old-time author to sell stories . . ."
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by Rinehart ... William F. Temple’s Amazing story, "The Four-Sided Triangle," will see British publication in novel-length version, sooner or later . . . W. P. Cockroft, New Worlds contributor, author of twopenny thriller, "They Came from Mars," now with BAOR in Germany ... L. V. Heald, coming up again in Fantasy, also producing text-books for writers, including "Encyclopedia of Article Ideas" (Matson: 10/6) ...
MAURICE HUGI PASSES
Maurice G. Hugi, British science fiction writer, recently died at his home in Kensal Rise, London, at the age of 43.
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Champion of Space-Flight
Success as a science fiction writer, even after years of rejections, won't deter ARTHUR C. CLARKE from the more important business of astronautics. Or so THOMAS SHERIDAN gathers from an interview with the BIS Councillor.
Picture a 12-year old high schoolboy, shock-headed, bespectacled, poring over Astounding Stories of Super-Science (as it was in the beginning), building telescopes out of old meccano parts, or peering at the craters of the Moon when he should have been sound asleep in the dorm. That, seventeen years ago, was Arthur Charles Clarke, known to his fellows of those days as "Professor"; to those of more recent days as "Ego" or "Rockets" Clarke. "Ego" because-well, somehow the nickname just grew. "Rockets" because for the past decade he’s been one of the most enthusiastic workers in Britain’s astronautics movement.
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flutter in high quarters. And almost before the V2’s had stopped falling he had set the wheels in motion for the reorganising of the BIS in amalgamation with the Combined British Astronautical Societies, resulting in the establishment of a new and more vigorous body early in '46.
ROLE OF SYNTHESISER
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got started as a storyteller-as much to my surprise as the editor’s," he averred.
Ripley Printing Society Ltd., Ripley, Derbys.
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The Van Vogt Masterpiece
SLAN! By A. E. Van Vogt, Arkham House, Sauk City, $2.50.
Reviewed by John Carnell
It is noticeable that the most outstanding science fiction stories of today are being written almost entirely by newcomers to the field. Van Vogt’s swift success must be as unique as it is well-deserved. His first magazine story appeared in the middle of '39, and within little more than a year he had produced three more and "Slan," all of which were published in Astounding Science-Fiction. And with this truly remarkable tale, which earned the first "nova" designation of that magazine, he established himself firmly among the new school of writers whose names, unknown before the war, are now household words among fantasy’s followers.
PUZZLE BOX, by Anthony More. Trover Hall, San Francisco, $1.75.
Reviewed by J. O. Newman
This first publication of a new American house which is to specialise in original fantasy is a very much smaller volume than one has come to expect of our monster-book-producing cousins. It has only 111 pages; but in them it presents six stories which are nicely varied in theme and treatment and all extremely well-written.
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shuddery, but disconcerting.
THE MURDER OF THE U.S.A. By Will F. Jenkins. Crown Publishers, New York, $2.00.
Reviewed by Arthur C. Clarke
This is a "whodunit" on the largest possible scale. It opens with the initial murder of seventy million Americans in a surprise attack by atomic rockets. The detective element comes in in the attempt by the survivors to discover and destroy the nation responsible. It is, therefore, not entirely incongruous that the book should be included in a murder mystery series.
Lost: 2 Lobblies
MR. MERGENTHWIRKER’s LOBBLlES and Other Fantastic Tales. by Nelson S. Bond. Coward-McCann, New York, 82.75.
Reviewed by Fred C. Brown
What is a lobbly? Most Americans would be able to tell you, since the title story of this book of fantasies has been reprinted in several U.S. collections and a radio play version has been broadcast at least three dozen times. To most of us, at least the author’s name is familiar; and Mr. Mergenthwirker is almost as famous in the States as his creator, who writes for many different publications.
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Witches and Werewolves
PRINCE OF DARKNESS: A Witchcraft Anthology, edited by Gera I d Verner. Westhouse, London, 8/6.
Reviewed by Sydney J. Bounds
Pact and fiction, with a third element which is neither one nor the other but a combination of the two, are brought together to make up this interesting volume. It is divided into four sections, to which are given the titles: Witchcult, Satanism, Sorcery and Lycanthropy. Each commences with a factual piece, and this is followed by one or more stories which develop the theme fictionally. The one exception is the first section, which contains no fiction.
Now Available in Book Form - The Much-Discussed "Astounding Science-Fiction" Serial
THE WEAPON MAKERS
By A. E. van Vogt
The story of a titanic struggle, waged in the far future, when Man is reaching out for the stars ... A struggle between a unique organisation of supermen, outlawed but powerful, determined to wrest from the tyrant Empress of Earth the one secret which eludes them-the invention of the interstellar drive-and Captain Hedrock, who pits his strength against the system-wide empire of the Isher Dynasty and the rebellious Weapon Makers, confident of succeeding in his own mysterious aims, supremely powerful because of his possession of the greatest secret of all-the secret of immortality !
THE HADLEY PUBLISHING CO.
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The fiction is of a uniformly high standard, yet even here Mr. Verner does not make his viewpoint clear. Algernon Blackwood’s "Ancient Sorceries," included in the section on Satanism, and "The Cyprian Cat," by Dorothy L. Sayers, placed in the Sorcery section, are both lycanthropic in theme; and the only story in the Lycanthropy section, F. G. Loring’s "The Tomb of Sarah," has to do with vampirism-incidentally, the only mention this subject receives in the whole volume: surely a strange omission?
The Moon That Was
THE BREAKING OF THE SEALS, by Francis Ashton. Dakers, 9/6.
Reviewed by Alan Devereux
This is, on the whole, quite a readable science-fantasy, based on Bellamy’s theory of a former satellite which broke up and fell upon Earth, causing vast cataclysms from which only a few survived. Readers of "Moons, Myths and Man" will be familiar with the hypothesis.
To Lemuria via West India
WEST INDIA LIGHTS, by Henry S. Whitehead. Arkham House, Sauk City, $3.00.
Reviewed by John C. Craig
A first dip into this second Arkham House collection of the late Dr. White-head’s work, comprising sixteen uncanny tales, may lead the reader who does not know him to the impression that here we have the American counterpart of M. R. James. The content of the stories is, however, very different from those of that master of the academic uncanny, though the form is somewhat similar.
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some writing of the blood-and-tooth variety. Moreover, his theme material is not exactly spring-like in its freshness. Here is the well-known dream association with past happenings, together with the physical survival of to-day in the form of a scar or other manifestation. We are all too familiar with it, and those who know "The Ship of Ishtar" will feel that they have been there before. It is only fair to add, perhaps, that both these pieces are extremely readable.
Did Mr. Baker Lose His Way?
BEFORE I GO HENCE by Frank Baker. Dakers, London, 9/6.
Reviewed by John Beynon.
It is at first a temptation to consider Mr. Baker’s latest book, subtitled "Fantasia on a Novel," as a web spun between the past and the present with its strands pulling on both ends, so that past not only restrains future but future puts tension upon past. Unfortunately, though, it is a metaphor which does not hold: a web, for all its slenderness, is a sound engineering proposition.
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Among the magazines
By NIGEL LINDSAY
First new post-war fantasy magazine to appear in U.S. is the Avon Fantasy Reader, of which No. 1 issue, priced at 35c., is to hand. It comes from Avon Publications, New York, who have lately reprinted several of Merritt’s masterpieces in their "Murder Mystery Monthly" series, and have also produced an "Avon Ghost Reader" in their pocket-book library. Described as "a periodic anthology," it is more of a pocket-book than a magazine, with a glossy cellophane cover, and a nice, dignified look internally.
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scriptions to all the American magazines, there’s a borrowing scheme which will keep you supplied with regular issues, and of which I'll be glad to supply details to anyone interested.
SUPERNATURAL HORROR IN LITERATURE. By Howard P. Lovecraft. Introduction by August Derleth. A study of the Horror, Gothic, Spectral and Weird Tales.12/6 ($2.50 in U.S.A.)
ARGUS BOOKS, Inc.
WEST 46th STREET NEW YORK 19, N. Y.
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|J. Michael Rosenblum writes
ALL FOR US
WATCH FOR THESE
U.S. BOOM: LATEST
|FANTASY REVIEW||Volume 1 No. 2||page 18|
that the first-named actually launched a Fantasy Book Club to supply specially selected volumes to members at reduced prices, but met with some opposition from New York booksellers which is holding up the project. Meanwhile they have produced "I Found Cleopatra," by Thomas P. Kelley, a Weird Tales serial reprint, and plan to do likewise with that great Hall-Flint classic, "The Blind Spot."
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Special Rate to Collectors: 2d. per word (5c. Canada and U.S.A.); minimum 12 words. To Traders and others: 3d.per word (7c. in Canada and U.S.A.). All Advertisements in this section must be prepaid. Box numbers 6d. (15c.) extra.
MAGAZINES & BOOKS of Science Fiction, the Weird and Unknown. Sample packet, 10/-; catalogue free. Sell or exchange your collection of science fiction. -S-F Publications (Dept. FR2), 16 Rockville Road, Liverpool, 14.
|FANTASY REVIEW||Volume 1 No. 2||Back Page|
NOW ON SALE
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"WHOM THE GODS DESTROY"
Vivid writing and uncanny situations characterise this new novel by an author whom the critics have aptly described as "out-Wellsing Wells, outdoing Jules Verne and putting Rider Haggard to shame."
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If you have any difficulty in obtaining your copies please communicate with:
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This version of the magazine was assembled by Farrago & Farrago using scans provided by Andy Sawyer at the Science Fiction Foundation in Liverpool.
All copyrights acknowledged, all articles and artwork remain the intellectual property of their creators.