Collecting and dealing in fantasy, science fiction and horror books, is our passion - on this site we showcase our hardcover range which you are welcome to browse, contemplate and possibly purchase. See our page for ordering online purchases and directions to our Wentworth Falls shop on 'The Blue Mountains Bookshop Trail', where we have a wide range of books from pre-loved/new paperbacks through to limited editions.
Unless otherwise specified, all books in this site are first edition hardcovers.
What we're reading:
It's Xmas! and we're winding down to the New Year thankfully. A time to reflect on what has been a momentous year for us - we opened up a brick and mortar shop, (and so many other things besides) big, crazy thing to do and we're still pinching ourselves...but it's been great. We've met some wonderful people and the local Blue Mountains support has been fantastic - thanks everyone. So on that note we wish you all a wonderful, safe holiday season and all the best for the New Year.
That's all for now, please check out the page for more books uploaded!
And this years least expected new arrival...
When Barbara was tasked with babysitting little Cindy and Bobby Adams, she didn’t have any reason to suspect anything was afoot. She even held an affinity for the Adams kids, who were receptive to their guardian’s instructions. There was no reason to think this gig would be different from any other. Then she awoke from her first night of sleep to find her arms and legs bound to the bed and her mouth gagged. Cindy and Bobby’s hidden little game had finally commenced.
With their parents embarked on a European excursion, Cindy and Bobby bought themselves the buffer and time they knew they would need to follow through with their plan. Barbara was their captured prey, a toy to play with or taunt or torture. For all they wanted to do was have some fun. Even if it came at Barbara’s expense.
But Cindy and Bobby didn’t hatch this scheme alone. The other members of their Freedom Five clan, including John, Paul, and Dianne, were already in on it. And with the game set, they had arrived. Now it was time to start the festivities.
If you’ve never read Let’s Go Play at the Adams’, then you’ve never really experienced the literal and visceral nightmare that is Johnson’s novel, one bereft of any empathy. It certainly has its peers. Think: Stephen King’s Carrie or Jack Ketchum’s The Girl Next Door. But this one kicks up the sheer shock factor by a few notches and then strangles the life out of it.
However, the most frightening aspect isn’t the explicit, in-your-face imagery that Johnson is unafraid to detail in meticulous fashion. It’s the juvenile culprits — wolves dressed in sheep’s clothing — who carry out ungodly acts on one of their own. In age, they’re only children, but they might as well be adults, deranged in their decision-making and psychotic in their execution.
And now for something diffrent from Centipede Press -'Let’s Go Play at the Adams’ by Mendal W. Johnson- this isn’t for the squeamish or faint of heart. Then, “why read it?”, you may ask. For the same reason you might read anything else: to experience something you haven’t before and may never again. And in this case, you haven’t.
And we'll finish with a few more from Centipede and Subterranean Press...
The Once and Future Witches By Alix E. Harrow
There’s no such thing as witches, but there used to be.
In 1893, as before, as always, women must fight to hold power, let alone exercise it. Witchcraft is a thing of the past. Burnings, then silence. But there are still women who remember the words and ways, and who have the will to conjure magic. And there are women determined to win their right to a voice at the ballot box.
Then there are the three Eastwood sisters, together once more in New Salem, who will end up fighting for both--and their lives: the youngest and wildest, James Juniper; the middle and steadying sister, Agnes Amararanth; and, the oldest and most bookish, Beatrice Belladonna. Attacked by forces who should be far more powerful, the three may once again bring women’s power into the world… This time, they hope against hope, it will end differently.
Limited: 400 signed numbered hardcover copies
Animal Farm: A Fairy Story by George Orwell
One of Time magazine’s 100 best English-language novels and the most famous of all twentieth-century political allegories, Animal Farm: A Fairy Story by George Orwell is a wise, compassionate and illuminating fable that remains the ultimate satire on the dark side of modern history.
The animals at Manor Farm have had enough of Farmer Jones. He’s drunk, reckless and cares little for their welfare. When the boar, Old Major, shares his revolutionary plans, the animals are convinced they can thrive on their own once the despot Jones is overthrown. The barnyard animals revolt against their vicious human master only to submit to a tyranny created by their own kind. For as the pigs vie for power, they begin to bear an uncanny resemblance to the tyrants they have overthrown.
A seminal anti-totalitarianism satire once considered so controversial it was rejected by several publishers, Animal Farm became an instant success upon its first publication in 1945, following the Second World War. The novel has continued to captivate readers of all ages, and has secured Orwell’s position as one of the greatest writers of all-time.
And believe it or not it would seem that a 'fairy tale' with talking animals is the example of 'normalcy' here (and what a beautiful example)...
The Coward by Stephen Aryan
Kell Kressia is a legend, a celebrity, a hero. Aged just seventeen he set out on an epic quest with a band of grizzled fighters to slay the Ice Lich and save the world, but only he returned victorious. The Lich was dead, the ice receded and the Five Kingdoms were safe.
Ten years have passed Kell lives a quiet farmer's life, while stories about his heroism are told in every tavern across the length and breadth of the land. But now a new terror has arisen in the north. Beyond the frozen circle, north of the Frostrunner clans, something has taken up residence in the Lich's abandoned castle. And the ice is beginning to creep south once more.
For the second time, Kell is called upon to take up his famous sword, Slayer, and battle the forces of darkness. But he has a terrible secret that nobody knows. He's not a hero - he was just lucky. Everyone puts their faith in Kell the Legend, but he's a coward who has no intention of risking his life for anyone...
Babel-17 and Empire Star
Here's the stunning Samuel R. Delany double limited edition with artwork by Vikki Zhang from Centipede Press
Babel - 17:
Language is a tool so powerful that in the wrong hands it can be used as a weapon. All the more reason to be prepared for the unexpected…if you can read between the lines.
For their part, the Alliance has taken every precaution to do just that, commissioning poet and language expert Rydra Wong to decipher what they believe to be coded transmissions sent between enemy Invaders. Cracking them may yield the locations of imminent attacks, enabling the Alliance to foil their efforts before they occur.
However, Rydra discovers that the code — dubbed Babel-17 — is in fact a language, one so compact that it has her spooked. With her ticket punched and team recruited, she heads to the War Yards at Armsedge, the purported setting of the next attack. Here she hopes to “…find out who, or what, in the Universe thinks that way.”
But her plan soon unravels when she realizes a traitor is in their midst, one step ahead and ready to spin their ship and operation out of control. What she doesn’t realize: she and her crew have taken the adage, “keep your friends close and your enemies closer”, more literally than was ever necessary.
The Citadel of Forgotten Myths by Michael Moorcock
Elric along with his companion Moonglum return, in this prequel set within the early days of Elric’s wanderings, in order to investigate the history of Melniboné and its dragons, known as the Phroon, in this exciting new addition to the Elric Saga from World Fantasy Lifetime Achievement Award winner Michael Moorcock.
Elric is the estranged emperor of the Melnibonéan empire, struggling with his nature while desperately striving to move forward with his dying empire alongside the constant thirst of his soul-sucking sword, Stormbringer. Elric is on the hunt for the great Citadel of Forgotten Myths while traveling through the remnants of his empire with his tragic best friend Moonglum, as Elric seeks the answers to the nature of the phroon of The Young Kingdoms. Taking place between the first and second book in the Elric Saga, The Citadel of Forgotten Myths is perfect for longtime fans and those new to this epic fantasy series.
His characters often fill the “everyman” void, allowing us the chance to identify with someone cut from the same cloth. There’s Justin in “Tempting Providence,” Dwight in “King of Cat Swamp,” and Ira in “We are Made of Stars,” who appear to follow the pattern of societal normalcy, adhering to the rules and keeping on the straight and narrow. However, when accosted by enigmatic entities — perhaps even supernatural — they find themselves left with little choice. And their decisions destroy all we’ve come to learn of them. But we soon find out that their fates are tied to a system beyond their control and universes beyond their reach.
There are also tales like “Mobymart after Midnight” and “The Poor in Spirit” that don’t fit any discernible horror mold. With protagonists just as crazy as those that draw the ire of their attention, Thomas turns the tables on his characters. Could the forces of evil be harboured on the grounds of a prosaic store? And could two strangers with no perceptible connection still share a symbiotic relationship even if it’s parasitic? Only someone with a wild imagination would believe either as truth unless it fell within the confines of Thomas’ warped writing.
Even if the monolithic creatures of Lovecraft’s most revered work are only present in whispers and rumblings, there’s a prowess shared amongst these stories that even he would approve. So, fast track yourself to Providence. For the journey into darkness may reveal the inner monsters you so desperately crave.
Malign Providence by Jonathan Thomas
“How remiss I’ve been as an object of human interest! You’ve yet to witness anything worth writing about.” Oh, how humble Thomas can be even as he channels his characters’ inner sanctum. But just follow his trail beyond that of H.A. in “The Last Jar” and you’ll find there’s much to witness and discover, and much you’d hope would stay buried. For the seeds of sinister Lovecraftian horror can be found scattered across these sixteen tales that depict a time and place from our recent past that is at once familiar yet distorted through Thomas’ cosmic horror lens. His Providence isn’t just that of Lovecraft’s home but of his own brand of mythos.
In a 1946 letter from George Orwell to Dwight Macdonald, the author discusses his intent in writing Animal Farm. Orwell writes, “What I was trying to say was: You can’t have a revolution unless you make it for yourself; there is no such thing as benevolent dictatorship.”
A timeless, affecting story of revolutions, idealism, power and corruption, Animal Farm: A Fairy Story is Orwell’s most renowned work.
What makes Animal Farm so brilliant is that it is a highly political story dressed up as a quaint fairy tale. The illustrations in this edition, too, are beautiful-but-deceptively-wicked. To keep up the facade, they've set the text in Austin. Designed by Paul Barnes for British style magazine Harper’s & Queen between 2007 and 2014, the face is a loose revival of the late-18th century typefaces of Richard Austin. Their sharp edges and sweet curves are a study in contrasts and can’t help but make a reader feel safe even when they’re reading about conniving anthropomorphized farm animals.
The display face is Will Carter’s Klang. Although calligraphic in nature, it was not drawn or written, but cut into card stock, giving it a thick and chunky look. It is perhaps the sort of letter that a pig might write—if that pig could hold a pen and was a celebrated printer, typographer, calligrapher, and carver of wood and slate like Carter was. Designed in 1955—ten years after the publication of Animal Farm—like the Austin types used for the text, Klang is quintessentially British and a fun (and dark) compliment to Orwell’s tragically timeless tale.