Thursday, January 3, 2013

My First Sci-Fi Romance Score of 2013

I enjoy browsing used bookstores even though I rarely purchase print books these days. I had a chance to visit Bookbuyers in Mountain View, CA on the day before New Year’s. I’d been to the store years ago but it’s been so long the experience felt new all over again. I must say, they have a terrific selection of books. The SF/F and Romance sections are both extensive so naturally I checked them out.

I pretty much know what I’m going to encounter in the way of SFR titles but it’s fun to see what each store has in stock. I prefer to read ebooks but occasionally I want to relive the experience of buying a used book at a time when SF/F fiction was fairly new to me. When I see huge stacks of those books in a used bookstore I still feel that pull.

I’m happy to report I scored a copy of Catherine Asaro’s THE PHEONIX CODE. I’ve wanted to read this book for a while but finding it has been as difficult as hunting for the proverbial needle in a haystack. I’d been searching for it in various libraries as well as used bookstores on both U.S. coasts to no avail. And while I greatly admire the author’s work, I can’t afford to pay $19.00 for a paperback copy at Amazon. Sure, I could have purchased it used online, but I’d rather experience the thrill of the hunt in a used bookstore. And woot! My instincts paid off.

But even Bookbuyers made me work a little extra to obtain THE PHEONIX CODE in my hands. The “A” author section started at the very top—as in above the regular shelf space. I'm 5 feet 8 inches, but it was too high for me to reach. So I dragged one of their handy stepladders down the aisle (banging a few other shelves in the process, oops!) and grabbed it that way. What can I say? I’ll do what it takes to read science fiction romance. :P

I had another interesting discovery as well. Bookbuyers has the biggest selection of Jacqueline Lichtenberg titles I’d ever seen. North of ten if you count duplicates as well as books she authored with Jean Lorrah. I was tempted to purchase the whole bunch just for the covers, but since I really need to keep my print book collection under control, I compromised by buying two.

Check out the cover art for HOUSE OF ZEOR and CITY OF A MILLION LEGENDS, because like, wow!

I’m sure I’d encountered these covers online before, but something about seeing them in print made them “pop” more. The objectification of the female characters is annoying (seriously, is that bald lady about to start pleasuring herself?), but seeing the art made me nostalgic for illustrated covers. The tentacle action on HOUSE OF ZEOR is just awesome! I’m a bit sad over the fact that we won’t see art like this for the current batch of sci-fi romance ebooks. Authors are creating settings and characters that would make for yummy cover art.

Oh well. At least I have HOUSE OF ZEOR for my coffee table!

Joyfully yours,