We love robots and we love books, and we especially love books with robots in them! Here's some of what we have on our bookshelf.
And, for more books about robots and science fiction, visit our newest site: SFPaperbacks.com.
The Best of Jack Williamson
By Jack Williamson
Cover artist: Ralph McQuarrie
We just couldn't resist including this book here. Though it's a bit more current than we've shown in previous weeks of the Rombots Bookshelf, the stories are pure Golden Age (ok, not all of them were written in the Golden Age, but they all have that spirit, as does most of Williamson's writing).
We've talked about Jack Williamson's Humanoids before but we just had to share this cover with you from The Best of Jack Williamson. Painted by the inimitable Ralph McQuarrie, it beautifully captures the essence of the Humanoid robots. How could this seemingly benign robot, carrying home groceries in a thoroughly mundane contemporary landscape, possibly be a threat to mankind? It should be obvious from the cover that this collection includes the story that started it all, 1947's With Folded Hands, Williamson's most significant robot story. Unfortunately, despite it being the best story in the book, it's one of only two stories in this collection where robots are the theme (the very short Jamboree being the other).
We can't say if this is the "Best" of Jack Williamson, because these are all short stories and novelettes and much of Williamson's best work was in the longer form, but it certainly is a retrospective of his career. The stories span the years from his pulp beginnings in 1928, where Amazing Stories founding editor Hugo Gernsbach touted him as the next Merritt, through the heart of the Golden Age and the post-war years and on into the space age, all the way through 1976. A span that covers nearly 50 years of both the development of Williamson as a writer and the metamorphosis of the field of science fiction itself.