Latest Newsletter

Out of the Woodwork 177. June 2011
Fantastic Literature - setting the standards for out of print on-line bookselling. Share

Welcome to our newsletter, it contains up to the minute news and gossip as well as awards details and items requiring help from the collective consciousness. If you wish to contribute please do so! We welcome your thoughts, your news items and any gossip!


Goodreads - our ongoing feature so you can see what's being read here at Fantastic HQ, and add to it if you wish by sending us your reviews. Or join us on Facebook

Taggart dropped by ITV - after 30 years of "murder" in bonnie Scotland
The Locus Science Fiction Foundation has announced the top five finalists in each category of the 2011 Locus Awards.
So how much would you pay for the original Chitty Chitty bang bang car? It's just gone up for sale.
FantasyCon 2011 is delighted to announce Joe Abercrombie as Guest of Honour, we've all the details.
Broadway's troubled Spider-Man musical has performed well since reopening - figures show
Japanese scientists discover rogue 'Free-floating' planets found with no star in sight
The marketshare of e-books falls after post-Xmas high - has the bubble finally burst?
Lindsey Davis wins the final CWA Cartier Diamond Dagger.
Sherlock wins two trophies at Bafta TV Awards and Martin Freeman reveals some interesting news about "The Hobbit"
The 2010 Nebula Awards were presented on Saturday, May 21. We have the winners for you.
Jeffery Deaver unveils his 21st Century James Bond spy novel
The Daleks are to be given "a rest" from battling Doctor Who.
Man jailed for six weeks over rare Harry Potter book theft
Matt Smith has signed on to appear in a new series of Doctor Who and a Doctor Who theme for 'immersive' theatre show - wow!
Leicester City Council 'not ready' for zombie attack : shock report!
Holy Kryptonite! Superman returns – without his pants - and we've got the pictures that prove it!

One for the Collective consciousness. Lordy, this one's tough! But see what you can do for us!

Obituaries: Edward Hardwicke dies aged 78, he famously played Dr Watson to Jeremy Brett's Sherlock Holmes. Dana Wynter dies aged 80, the actress best known as co-star of the original 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers'. Terry Jeeves, fan artist, writer and generally nice guy. Joel Rosenberg, author of fantasy and SF (b.1954) died on the evening of June 2,

Department of Smug Self Satisfaction - what our kind customers have to say about the Fantastic experience.
Silly Stuff: and any contributions welcomed. Pirates of the Caribbean fun from the BBC. Anne Robinson and some stunning news from Salman Rushdie (it's not even April 1st)
Latest new arrivals - Interzone 234, David Nickles "Eutopia" in a signed limited edition of just 41! and six de-luxe limited editions from MHB Press, masterpieces of erotic horror that include:- Graham Mastertons collection "Grease Monkey", Guy N Smith's "The Sucking Pit", Amarantha Knight's "Dracula - The Darker Passions, Graham Masterton's "The Sphinx", Gray Brander's "The Howling" and Edward Lee's "The Chosen".

External Blinks:

The Guardian asks the stars of modern SF to pick the best science fiction and it's a fascinatiing list.
Finalists for the 2011 Prix Aurora Awards for Canadian SF & Fantasy.
The Crime Writers’ Associationthas announced the shortlists for a number of this year’s Daggers - the prestigious awards that celebrate the very best in crime and thriller writing.
Evolution, sex and dinosaur necks - a fascinating feature from the BBC
ASFA announce the 2011 Chesley Award Finalists
BBC - another excellent feature on King Arthur and Camelot: Why the cultural fascination?
John W. Campbell Memorial Award Finalists have been announced.
The finalists for the 2011 Sturgeon Award have been announced.
Guardian SF review of the 12th June - Eric Brown is the reviewer


You can also join us on facebook to keep abreast of our news and reviews. Simon Gosden

After almost 30 years on our screens, the police drama Taggart has been axed by the ITV network, putting the future of one of Scotand's favourite TV programmes in doubt. Ratings for the series south of the border have been in steady decline but STV, who produce Taggart, are trying to strike a deal with another broadcaster to keep it going. BBC story and video

The Locus Science Fiction Foundation has announced the top five finalists in each category of the 2011 Locus Awards.
Winners will be announced during the Science Fiction Awards Weekend in Seattle WA, June 24-26, 2011. The Science Fiction Hall of Fame Induction will also take place that weekend, inducting Harlan Ellison, Gardner Dozois, Moebius, and Vincent Di Fate. Tickets are still available here.
Science Fiction Novel
•Surface Detail, Iain M. Banks (Orbit UK; Orbit US)
•Cryoburn, Lois McMaster Bujold (Baen)
•Zero History, William Gibson (Putnam; Viking UK)
•The Dervish House, Ian McDonald (Pyr; Gollancz)
•Blackout/All Clear, Connie Willis (Spectra)
Fantasy Novel
•Under Heaven, Guy Gavriel Kay (Penguin Canada; Roc)
•Kraken, China Miéville (Macmillan UK; Del Rey)
•Who Fears Death, Nnedi Okorafor (DAW)
•The Fuller Memorandum, Charles Stross (Ace; Orbit UK)
•The Sorcerer’s House, Gene Wolfe (Tor)
First Novel
•The Loving Dead, Amelia Beamer (Night Shade)
•The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit UK; Orbit US)
•Shades of Milk and Honey, Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor)
•The Quantum Thief, Hannu Rajaniemi (Gollancz; Tor)
•How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe, Charles Yu (Pantheon)
Full list available at the Locus website

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, one of the most loved cars in the world, is going up for auction in Los Angeles. The star of the 1968 family movie was shipped to California from England to go under the hammer on Sunday. The unique vehicle, which is still in working order, is expected to fetch up to $2m (£1.2m). For the past four decades it has been kept in Stratford-upon-Avon by owner Pierre Picton, the man who looked after it on set. It has appeared at hundreds of shows and charity road races, but has never been auctioned until now.

FantasyCon 2011 is delighted to announce Joe Abercrombie as Guest of Honour.

Joe was born in Lancaster, England, on the last day of 1974. He was educated at Lancaster Royal Grammar School and Manchester University, then moved to London and spent ten years working as a freelance TV editor, mostly on documentaries and live music, cutting concerts for bands from Iron Maiden to Coldplay. For much of this time he was spending his late nights bent over the keyboard, working on his take on epic fantasy.

THE BLADE ITSELF was published in 2006, and now has publishers in more than 20 countries. Its sequels, BEFORE THEY ARE HANGED and LAST ARGUMENT OF KINGS, followed in 2007 and 2008. BEST SERVED COLD, a stand-alone book set in the same world, was published in June 2009, and a second stand-alone, THE HEROES, in January 2010, when it made No. 3 on the SUNDAY TIMES Bestseller list.

FANTASYCON 2011 will be held over the weekend of 30th September to 2nd October 2011 at the Royal Albion Hotel, Brighton, the venue for the highly successful 2010 World Horror Convention.


Broadway's troubled Spider-Man musical has performed well since reopening in a reworked version after a three-week break, box office figures have shown. According to data released on Monday, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark has played at 95% capacity since reopening its doors on Thursday. The latest version of the show will have its official opening on 14 June. BBC story

Japanese astronomers claim to have found free-floating "planets" which do not seem to orbit a star. Writing in Nature, they say they have found 10 Jupiter-sized objects which they could not connect to any solar system. They also believe such objects could be as common as stars are throughout the Milky Way. The objects revealed themselves by bending the light of more distant stars, an effect called "gravitational microlensing". Objects of large enough mass can bend light, as Albert Einstein predicted. If a large object passes in front of a more distant background star, it may act as a lens, bending and distorting the light of that star so that it may appear to brighten significantly. BBC story

The percentage of e-book purchases has dropped back from the high of the post-Christmas period, falling to 2.5% of all book purchases in volume over the four-week period to 20th March. E-book purchases made up 2.5% of the total book market over the four-week period to 20th March 2011, down from about 3% on the four weeks to 20th February, but made up 5.4% of adult fiction (volume) purchases. Also for the four weeks to 20th March, e-books made up 1.6% of total book purchases in value, and 3.8% of the value of adult fiction purchases Bookseller

The Diamond Dagger, awarded for sustained excellence in crime writing, was presented to bestselling historical author Lindsey Davis during a glittering champagne reception at the newly-reopened Savoy Hotel, London. Davis is the creator of the well-loved ancient Roman private eye Marcus Didius Falco, and widely recognised as the godmother of the historical crime genre CWA

Sherlock has taken two prizes at the Bafta TV Awards ceremony in London, including best drama series. Martin Freeman, who plays Watson in the latest screen version of the stories, was named best supporting actor. Martin Freeman in an unguarded moment also revealed that Sherlock actor Benedict Cumberbatch has landed a role in The Hobbit. Freeman let the news slip backstage at the Bafta TV awards on Sunday, where Sherlock picked up the prize for best drama series. Asked about his role, Cumberbatch remained tight-lipped: "I can't say at the moment, thank you very much." Freeman said later: "I knew I was a sort of a big mouth but I didn't realise to what extent I was a big mouth, and I've just ruined everything. I might not actually go back to a job - they might have just sacked me." BBC story

Nebula Award Winners Announced
The 2011 Nebula Award Winners are:

Winning Novel: Blackout/All Clear by Connie Willis (Spectra)

Winning Novella: “The Lady Who Plucked Red Flowers Beneath the Queen’s Window” by Rachel Swirsky (Subterranean Summer ’10)

Winning Novelette: “That Leviathan Whom Thou Hast Made” by Eric James Stone (Analog 9/10)

Winning Short Story (tie): “Ponies” by Kij Johnson ( 1/17/10) and “How Interesting: A Tiny Man” by Harlan Ellison (Realms of Fantasy 2/10)

Ray Bradbury Award: Inception

Andre Norton Award: I Shall Wear Midnight by Terry Pratchett (Gollancz; Harper)

Thriller writer Jeffery Deaver, who unveiled his James Bond novel Carte Blanche on Wednesday 25th May, has admitted that he gives Ian Fleming's superspy a tough time in the 21st Century. At a launch event planned with the precision of an MI6 operation, the American author received the first copy of the book from a team of Royal Marines who abseiled from the roof of London's St Pancras station. BBC story

The Daleks are to be given "a rest" from battling Doctor Who, writer Steven Moffat has told the Radio Times. Moffat, who is also the BBC television show's executive producer, said: "They aren't going to make an appearance for a while. We thought it was about time to give them a rest." The Daleks were voted the scariest villains in the history of Doctor Who in a poll of fans in 2007. Moffat said they had been defeated by the Doctor "about 400 times". BBC

The names and release dates of Peter Jackson's two forthcoming films based on JRR Tolkien's The Hobbit have been announced. The first film will be called The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and will be released in December next year. The Hobbit: There and Back Again is scheduled to be out in December 2013. BBC news

A man has been jailed for six weeks after he admitted stealing a limited first edition Harry Potter book from an art gallery. Kevin McGirr, 40, had been charged with the theft of the rare copy of Harry Potter and The Philosopher's Stone. The book, worth about £6,000, went missing from the Creative Art Gallery in Woodstock, Oxfordshire, in October. There is no truth in the rumour that he will spending his stir in Azkaban! BBC story

Matt Smith has signed on to appear in a new series of Doctor Who, the BBC has confirmed. Fourteen new episodes of the sci-fi show, written by executive producer Steven Moffat, have been commissioned. However it is not yet known when the new episodes will be broadcast. The corporation also confirmed there would be six more episodes of the current series to be screened later this year and a 2011 Christmas special starring Smith is planned. BBC stoy

Doctor Who fans are to be plunged into one of the Time Lord's adventures in an "immersive" theatre show created by the acclaimed company Punchdrunk. Punchdrunk are famous for transforming entire buildings into mysterious locations which audiences explore as the action unfolds around them. BBC story

Leicester City Council 'not ready' for zombie attack : shock report!

A worried member of the public has forced Leicester City Council to admit it is unprepared for a zombie invasion. The authority received a Freedom of Information request which said provisions to deal with an attack, often seen in horror films, were poor. The "concerned citizen" said the possibility of such an event was one that councils should be aware of. "We've had a few wacky ones before but this one did make us laugh," said Lynn Wyeth, head of information governance. BBC story

Holy Kryptonite! Superman returns – without his pants
For more than 70 years he has flown to the world's rescue dressed in a trademark red cape, blue suit and startling tight red trunks worn outside his trousers. Superman, however, is about to lose his pants. But fans will be reassured to know that the Man of Steel will keep his red cape and blue bodysuit and, seeing as the pants were always worn on the outside, his modesty should remain intact. Daily Mirror

One for the collective consciousness:-,

Dear Simon,

A friend recommended that I e-mail in regards to a book that I am searching for from my childhood, can you help me? The cover had a color picture in the middle with a border of thick black and white stripes. The only character I distinctly remember is Cleopatra who was a cat. The illustrations were beautiful, ornate and took up the entire page. They were my favorite thing about the book. There were little words in the book from what I remember. I hope this is a good enough description. Thank you in advance!

-Meahgan (can you help? - e-mail us if you can)

Well Paul Brazier got right on to it:

Hi Simon
The woman who asked this question could have been less shy about her age and told us when her childhood was.
However, the only cat in books I'm aware of called Cleopatra is Mehitabel, who claims to have the soul of Cleopatra. Of course, there have been so many editions of Don Marquis's classic books it would be impossible to track a particular one down unless someone else remembers the actual book (the description does sound familiar...) but perhaps this might jog the lady's memory.
keep up the good work and take care. Paul


British actor Edward Hardwicke who played Dr Watson in Granada TV's adaptation of Sherlock Holmes, opposite Jeremy Brett and was also known for playing a character based on real-life war hero Pat Reid in the BBC 1970s drama Colditz, has died aged 78. Film appearnces included The Day of the Jackal (1973), The Black Windmill (1974); Richard Loncraine's 1995 version of Richard III and Shadowlands (1993) BBC obituary

A coolly elegant dark-haired beauty Dana Wynter had a spell as a Hollywood leading lady in the 1950s, starring opposite Robert Taylor and Richard Todd in D-Day, The Sixth of June, and Kenneth More in Sink the Bismark!, but her best-remembered role is that of Becky Driscoll in Don Siegel's classic sci-fi thriller Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956). Independent obituary

Author Joel Rosenberg, 57, died June 1, 2011 following respiratory problems that led to a heart attack, brain damage, and organ failure. Rosenberg is best known for his Guardians of the Flame fantasy series, but he wrote nearly 30 books, including SF and mysteries. SFWA

Prolific fan artist Terry Jeeves has passed away. Sheryl Birkhead received the news in an e-mail from Terry’s daughter. A member of First Fandom and winner of its Hall of Fame Award in 2010, Terry was active as an artist, organizer, faned and fan writer. His art was popular and respected. He contributed countless humorous line drawings to fanzines and won the Rotsler Award in 2007. “The virtues of Terry’s work,” Taral Wayne once wrote, “is its invariable good humour, and the by and large pleasing nature of its construction.” File770 website

Department of Smug Self Satisfaction.

1. Fairly quick service,good protected packaging very good price for a great condition book, would definately order from this seller again
(Amazon UK)

2. Exactly as described, very fast delivery, extremely satisfied (Amazon UK)

3. Actually rec'd more quickly than from the US sellers I ordered some of the rest of the series from. Very impressed. Book in very good condition. Thanks!
(Amazon US)

4. Exceeded expectations. Unexpectedly fast shipping (from UK to USA), book arrived carefully wrapped and packaged to avoid damage, excellent attention to detail. Look forward to doing more business with them. (Amazon US

5. Sehr schneller Versand. Bücher bestens verpackt in Kartonage, zus. in Kunststofftüte und eingeschlagen in Zeitungspapier. Zustand wie beschrieben. 1: "gebr-wie neu", "fine paperback". 2: "gebr.-sehr gut", "1st ed. HC, vg in a vg dustwrapper". Sehr gerne wieder. (Amazon De)

6. Book was in excellent condition and arrived surprisingly fast. I am pleased with this selller, and would purchase from them again.
. (Amazon ca)

Silly stuff:

The BBC in their infinite wisdom had this photo and caption about Pirates of The Caribbean topping the US box office

Penelope Cruz (r) joins Johnny Depp (l) in the fourth
Pirates of the Caribbean film

(Just in case you couldn't work out who was who!)

The Weakest Link: Anne Robinson: 'In 2006, the Star Wars character voted the most annoying film character ever was Jar Jar ... what ' Contestant: 'Gabor.'

The Weakest Link: Anne Robinson: 'Which "T" is the wife of Oberon and Queen of the Fairies in A Midsummer Night's Dreams?' Contestant 'Tinkerbell.'

Salman Rushdie says TV drama series have taken the place of novels. So according to the Guardian the Booker-prizewinning novelist plans to write sci-fi drama for television, citing The Wire, The Sopranos and Mad Men as an inspiration. I was going to start that piece by saying SF novelist but I couldn't bring myself to do it - so what exactly are his qualifications? Answers on a very small postcard.......

New arrivals for your delectation:-

EUTOPIA byDavid Nickle (ChiZine Publications) limited to just 41 signed copies

The year is 1911. In Cold Spring Harbour, New York, the newly formed Eugenics Records Office is sending its agents to catalogue the infirm, the insane, and the criminal—with an eye to a cull, for the betterment of all. Near Cracked Wheel, Montana, a terrible illness leaves Jason Thistledown an orphan, stranded in his dead mother’s cabin until the spring thaw shows him the true meaning of devastation—and the barest thread of hope. At the edge of the utopian mill town of Eliada, Idaho, Doctor Andrew Waggoner faces a Klansman’s noose and glimpses wonder in the twisting face of the patient known only as Mister Juke. Toronto author David Nickle's debut novel, the followup to his brilliantly wicked collection of horror stories Monstrous Affections, establishes him as a worthy heir to the mantle of Stephen King.
For order information and price click on the image

INTERZONE 234 edited by Andy Cox (TTA Press)

With new stories by Jason Sanford, Suzanne Palmer, Lavie Tidhar, Will McIntosh, and Jon Ingold. Colour art is by Richard Wagner, and Mark Pexton. Nick Lowe reviews films, Tony Lee reviews DVDs and Blu-rays, and Jim Steel and the team review books and interview Chung Kuo creator David Wingrove. This issue also contains the results of the Readers' Poll.
For order information and price click on the image

These books are available for order or pre-order, de-luxe signed, numbered limited editions from MBH press. For more information and details please click on the individual images.

Graham Masterton - Grease Monkey. Over 120,000 words from the world's foremost exponent of erotic horror. Fifteen of Graham's classic short stories (some previously uncollected) in a brand new publication. Over 120,000 words from the world's foremost exponent of erotic horror. Fifteen of Graham's classic short stories (some previously uncollected) in a brand new publication - Grease Monkey and other Tales of Erotic Horror. In this remarkable new collection Graham Masterton doesn't just cross the line - he jumps all over it with hob nailed boots on!

Contents - Epiphany, Camelot, Picnic At Lac Du Sang, The Jajouka Scarab, The Secret Shih-Tan, Sex Object, Heroine, Changeling, Rococo, Suffer Kate, Bridal Suite, Grease Monkey, Lolicia, Son Of Beast & Sepsis and a dozen illustrations ! Limited to 150 copies. (In stock)

Guy N Smith. The Sucking Pit. Hopwas Wood is a place of mystery and for generations, tales have been told about an ancient gypsy burial site deep within.Hopwas Wood is a place of mystery and for generations, tales have been told about an ancient gypsy burial site deep within.

Jenny Lawson always knew she had Romany blood flowing through her veins and when given a secret book by her dying Uncle can't resist the urge to mix the ancient potions described inside. In a matter of hours the virginal jenny is transformed into a knife wielding nymphomaniac.

Entranced by the mysterious Cornelius, Jenny uses all her womanly charms to persuade the wood's owner to let the gypsy's set up camp on their holy ground. Ex-boyfriend Chris, an investigative reporter, is horrified by the changes in the girl he once loved and embarks on a quest for the truth only to discover the terror that lies deep within The Sucking Pit ! Limited to 400 copies (pre-order)

Amarantha Knight. Dracula - The Darker Passions. For the first time Amarantha Knight's acclaimed erotic pastiche will be available to collector's and fans in a quality, signed hardback edition.The Darker Passions are good, cleanly written smut for adults who appreciate a look at classic horror through a decidedly decadent eye. The books are, in a way, little masterpieces of their own." - Paula Guran (Dark Echo)

"Well written and imaginative, Amarantha Knight gives fresh impetus to this myth. taking us through the sexual and sadistic scenes with details that keep us reading ... This author shows superb control. A classic in itself has been added to the shelves." - Divinity

WARNING - the content and illustrations mean this one is Strictly Adults Only!! Limited to 300 copies. (pre-order)


Graham Masterton - THE SPHINX. Originally published in 1978 as a Star paperback original and in the same year by W.H. Allen in hardback. Out of print for many years, Graham Masterton's classic horror novel is now available to collectors and fans. For up and coming politician Gene Keiller an attraction to a beautiful woman is no strange thing. But Lorie Semple is no ordinary woman . . . she has a secret . . . she has history . . . and when attraction becomes obsession he takes his first steps on a perilous journey where myth and reality collide with devastating consequences. A savage beast is unleashed and by the time he discovers the truth about the mysterious beauty who has so captivated his soul it is far too late to run.

"That people," they are called, for no man can bring himself to speak their name out loud . . . and their obscene secret is about to be revealed. Limited to 300 copies (In stock)

Gary Brandner. The Howling. Originally published as a paperback original in 1977 (US) by Fawcett and in 1978 (UK) by Hamlyn this classic tale of werewolves provided the inspiration for the extraordinarily successful movie of the same name. Roy and Karyn Beatty thought they had it made until Karyn suffered a brutal sexual assault she would never forget. In an effort to save their marriage and their sanity they moved to the rural California town of Drago. Like all small towns, Drago was quiet. Sometimes too quiet. The people were strange and at night .... the wolves howled.
With a history of unexplained deaths and disappearances the seemingly safe town of Drago harboured an age old secret. And it was in their new home that Roy and Karyn would be forced to confront a horror that defied belief. Limited to 300 copies (In stock)
Edward lee. The Chosen. For the first time Edward Lee's classic novel of erotic horror will be available to collector's and fans. Adults only.Restaurant manager Vera Abott seems to have been given the job of her dreams. With a huge salary, company car and accommodation thrown in she moves to The Inn - a new restaurant / hotel being developed at the secluded Wroxton Hall by the mysterious Mr. Feldspar. But from the day she arrives she realises something is seriously wrong. She hears strange noises and sees shadowy figures prowling the corridors late at night and in her dreams is seduced by a hideous stranger who uses her body to satisfy his depraved lusts. The Inn hides a terrible secret and Vera is about to be initiated into a secret world of diabolical sex and horror. Limited to 300 copies. (In stock)
We welcome your input, your views on genre books, films etc.
Recommend anything to our 8,000 readers or ask a question.
We are sure to be in touch with someone who can help.

We also buy books and travel around the country to purchase, we will pay a finders fee to anyone who puts us in touch with a collection we later purchase.

Instant ordering on our web site in small press, magazines
and special offers.
Good reading and watching - Simon & Laraine.
Fantastic Literature Limited
35 The Ramparts
Essex, SS6 8PY
United Kingdom
Previous OotW - archives

OotW121. OotW122. OotW 123, OotW 124, OotW 125, OotW 126, OotW 127, OotW 128, OotW 129, OotW 130, OotW 131, OotW 132, OotW 133, OotW134, OotW135, OotW136, OotW 137, OotW138, OotW 139, OotW 140, OotW141, OotW 142, OotW 143, OotW144, OotW145, OotW146. OotW147, OotW148, OotW149, OotW 150, OotW151, OotW 152, OotW 153, OotW 154, OotW155, OotW156, OotW157, OotW 158, OotW159, OotW 160, OotW161, OotW162, OotW 163, OotW164, OotW 165, OotW 166, OotW167, OotW168 OotW 169, OotW170, OotW171, OotW172, OotW173, OotW 174, OotW 175, OotW176

  Bookmark and Share