Sf Masterworks

A friend asked me this morning if there was any up-to-date listing of the Gollancz SF Masterworks series (for which I, Adam Roberts, and Gwyneth Jones are writing introductions). There’s a Wikipedia page for the series, but it’s a bit out of date. So here’s a listing of all the titles that have been announced so far, with links to the relevant Amazon pages. The series is doing two things at the moment: reprinting titles from the original 1999-2007 series in a new livery with new introductions; and adding new titles in the same livery. Real completists will note that the new livery has more than a little to do with the “Gollancz Yellow” that adorned many sf hardbacks for several decades till the 1980s. The original series was numbered, the new ones aren’t; I’ve added notional (and not-at-all official) numbering in the list below because I’m that sort of OCD-ish completist. Nos 1-10 are the original series, and nos 74 on are the new ones. The links under each title take you to the appropriate Amazon page, where you can buy the books and make my fortune via Amazon’s referral programme. (Other bookshops are available.) I’ll try to keep this list updated as and when new titles are announced.

ETA, Dec 4th 2011: list updated to Dec 2012.

Number Author Title Format Date
“1” Joe Haldeman The Forever War pb Apr-10
“2” Richard Matheson I am Legend pb Apr-10
“3” James Blish Cities in Flight pb Apr-10
“4” Philip K. Dick Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? pb Apr-10
“5” Alfred Bester The Stars My Destination pb Apr-10
“6” Samuel R. Delany Babel-17 pb Apr-10
“7” Roger Zelazny Lord of Light pb Apr-10
“8” Gene Wolfe The Fifth Head of Cerberus pb Apr-10
“9” Frederik Pohl Gateway pb Apr-10
“10” Cordwainer Smith The Rediscovery of Man pb Apr-10
“74” Christopher Priest Inverted World pb May-10
“75” Kurt Vonnegut Cat’s Cradle hb May-10
“76” H G Wells The Island of Doctor Moreau hb Jun-10
“77” Arthur C. Clarke Childhood’s End hb Jun-10
“78” H G Wells The Time Machine hb Jul-10
“79” Samuel R. Delany Dhalgren pb Jul-10
“80” Brian Aldiss Helliconia pb Aug-10
“81” H G Wells The Food of the Gods hb Sep-10
“82” Jack Finney The Body Snatchers pb Oct-10
“83” Joanna Russ The Female Man pb Nov-10
“84” M J Engh Arslan pb Dec-10
“85” William Gibson & Bruce Sterling The Difference Engine pb Jan-11
“86” Christopher Priest The Prestige pb Feb-11
“87” Brian Aldiss Greybeard pb Mar-11
“88” Olaf Stapledon Sirius pb Apr-11
“89” Dan Simmons Hyperion pb May-11
“90” Clifford Simak City pb Jun-11
“91” Frank Herbert Hellstrom’s Hive pb Jul-11
“92” William Tenn Of Men and Monsters pb Aug-11
“93” Karel Capek War with the Newts & R.U.R. pb Sep-11
“94” Christopher Priest The Affirmation pb Oct-11
“95” Cecelia Holland Floating Worlds pb Nov-11
“96” Algis Budrys Rogue Moon pb Jan-12
“97” Harlan Ellison (ed.) Dangerous Visions pb Feb-12
“98” Olaf Stapledon Odd John pb Mar-12
“99” Dan Simmons The Fall of Hyperion pb Apr-12
“100” Douglas Adams The Hitch-hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy hb May-12
“101” H G Wells The War of the Worlds hb Jul-12
“102” Pat Cadigan Synners pb Aug-12
“103” Nicola Griffith Ammonite pb Sep-12
“104” Karen Joy Fowler Sarah Canary pb Sep-12
“105” Mary Shelley Frankenstein pb Oct-12
“106” D G Compton The Continuous Catherine Mortenhoe pb Oct-12
“107” Connie Willis Selected Short fiction pb Nov-12
“108” Russell Hoban Riddley Walker pb Nov-12
“109” Colin Greenland Take Back Plenty pb Dec-12
“110” H G Wells The Invisible Man pb Dec-12

12 Responses to “Sf Masterworks”

  1. Thank you. I was actually looking at the first ones to turn up in a bookshop here in Sydney. I was pleased that some issues that I had with the original series – poor print and lack of introductions – have been addressed with these new editions.

    Especially looking forward to the Dhalgren and Helliconia editions (about time I finally finished them)

  2. Thanks. I believe Gollancz are indeed doing new typesetting for the new ones. (Exception: Dhalgren, which has all sorts of typographical complications, and for which they’re using the recent Vintage text incorporating Delany’s latest corrections.)

  3. I too was wondering which of the various texts of ‘Dhalgren’ was going to be used. I doubt Delany would want to do yet another read-through for typos.

    Particularly looking forward to MJ Engh’s ‘Arslan’, which I found to be an excellent read when Tor reissued it several years ago. Who is doing the intro for that?

    Also (and please forgive the persistent questioning), are there still plans afoot to get hold of Disch’s ‘Camp Concentration’, now that he’s unfortunately no longer with us? It was listed before for Masterworks publication but I gather that particular deal fell through.

  4. Adam’s doing the intro for Arslan. Re the Disch, I’m on record in my admiration for the book, but as you’ll understand I can only talk about what’s officially announced. And, as you know, there are all sorts of rights/contractual reasons that can stymie reissuing any book.

  5. Thanks for providing an updated list. I only found out that the list was extended by accident. There are reading groups online for these books and they have quite a following. Nice to find a place where I can find the latest information.

  6. Philip, glad you found it helpful.

  7. Hi,

    Olaf Stapeldon’s ‘Last and First Men’ has also been printed in the new version (number 11 on the old list). Although all the book stores seem to list it with the old cover, and it doesn’t seem to say even on the book itself when exactly it was published. I ordered it from Amazon recently expecting to get the old version but ended up with the new cover version.

    It seems anywhere you attempt to go nobody has a really truly up to date version of this list :).

    Anyway, thanks for the one that you have provided here, it’s much more useful than the wikipedia entry.



  8. Also, Poul Anderson’s ‘Tau Zero’ has been printed in the new edition. Although, on Amazon’s entry for the new edition, it says that it was published in 2006, which is the date of the publication from the old numbered series.

    • Converting and rereleasing is sonethimg Baen *has* done, you know. And they are doing it even as we speak. Both from somebody else’s print catalog (most recently adding Heinlein books) and from their own catalog (to support epub on pre-2008 releases).The key with Baen is that there is every indication that they use modern workflow tools in their production process which keeps the manuscript in electronic form every step of the way to the printing plant so ebooks are an easy intermediary byproduct of producing a print book.Most BPHs (Big Publishing Houses, to distinguish them from the small and medium-sized publishers who aren’t clueless) are still stuf with a 18th century business model and 20th century publishing processes. (I’ve heard of Madison ave Publishers that rely on sneakernet and ftp servers for document flows.) Expecting those types to understand concepts such as sunk costs, long-tail sales or sonethimg as basic as product arketing to the end-user is simply too much.A good book is a good book regardless of whether it was written yesterday or in 1959.And the really good stuff is timeless; classics get to be classic by surviving the test of time.The reason Google is s actively trying to acquire a monopoly on so-called orphan works is that they understand there is gold in them thar hills and the BPHs who actually own the rights are too hung up on lookingfor the next big thing they are neglecting the value of their existing assets.That said, there is one (semi-valid) reason why a lot of publishers are nelecting their back catalog; they don’t actually own it and they are too (proud, stupid, cheap; pick one) to use their existing relationship with the author to negotiate a secondary contract for the erights they don’t own. It is beneath them to go ask for sonethimg they believe is theirs by dvine right but which every court has said isn’t. (Presumably they are hoping for a miraculous new ruling reversing decades of precedent.)They would rather dish out a Million dollar advance to the latest made-up true-lfe story to pops up on Oprah or the NYT than to actually spend that money getting a thousand back-caalog titles out in ebook form.Now, if they actually took notice of the music industry, where the back catalog is pretty much the only thing keeping the studios afloat

  9. Hmm, sorry, it seems my comment before this didn’t appear.

    I also said that, Olaf Stapledon’s ‘Last and First Men’ is available in the new version (number 11 on the original list), although all the sites still appear to have the old version listed.

    So I’m slightly confused, it appears that nobody has a truly up to date version of what exactly has been published in this series :).

  10. ‘Star Maker’, also, is available in the new version, but again Amazon has the old numbered version listed.

  11. […] written sff – for instance, I review for Locus, and write introductions for some of Gollancz’s SF Masterworks. But I’ve also been a Doctor Who fan from way back when, and Paul outed me a few years […]

Leave a Reply to grahamsleight Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: