From: Shep Iiams <>
Date: Mon, 4 Nov 1996
Subject: Science Fiction Reference Books

This is a summary of the best, most current, primary SF references I am aware of to identify first editions, find reading material, find stories with favorite themes, pricing, etc.


Clute & Nichols, THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF SCIENCE FICTION, 1993 St. Martins, 1370 pages. Hard back $75. Paperback updated 1995. $29.95. Illustrated CD ROM available from Grolier for Mac and Windoze. An indispensable reference book on science fiction that contains over 4,300 entries and 1.2 million words. For every reader who loves, uses and wishes to know more about science fiction, this is the first and most important reference you should get. Has publication dates and title changes only with no other first edition ID information. Unlike the 1979 edition, the book is not illustrated and there are no magazine checklists.


Currey Lloyd, SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY AUTHORS: A BIBLIOGRAPHY OF THEIR FIRST EDITIONS, 1979, G. K. Hall. Covers roughly 215 important authors thru December 1977, reference citations thru June 1979. Although perhaps the most important, thorough and accurate guide to identification of first editions, it if far from complete or accurate. For instance it is very easy to misidentify Heinlein's STRANGER IN A STRANGE LAND by Currey's less than complete description. There are almost no cover/dust jacket prices or page counts mentioned excepting paperbacks. $75 from author at (518)873-6477

Tuck, Donald, THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY, 1974 Advent. Out of print. A three volume encyclopedia current thru 1968. The bulk of vol. 1 & 2 consist of short author biographies with extensive book bibliographies which include many authors and descriptive items not found in the more recent Currey bibliography such as cover prices, page counts, later and foreign editions.

Reginald, R. SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY LITERATURE: A CHECK LIST 1700 - 1974, Gale Research. vol. 1 is 786 pages. Attempts to identify all first and first thus editions thru 1974, but only contains date, publisher, page count, hardback/paperback information. No cover price or other identifying point information included. Includes by title, series, award , ace and Belmont doubles indexes. Vol. 2 Short biographies including original author comments and 32 page B&W "Pictorial History of Science Fiction Publishing". Out of print

Reginald, R. SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY LITERATURE 1975-91: Supplement, 1992 Gale Research $199.00 Attempts to identify all first and first thus editions 1975 thru 1991, but only contains date, publisher, page count, hardback/paperback information. No cover price or other identifying point information included.

Stephens, Christopher P. THE SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY PAPERBACK FIRST EDITION: A COMPLETE LIST OF THEM ALL (1939 - 1973) , Ultramarine 1991, 8 1/2 x 11 wraps, 144 pages. $22.95 (914)-478-2522 By author listings with a title index. Includes publisher ID numbers, cover price, page count, and illustrators


Day, Donald, INDEX TO THE SCIENCE FICTION MAGAZINES 1926 - 1950, 1952 Perri Press, out of print. All major SF magazines but no Horror such as WEIRD TALES. By author and title with pseudonyms, but no index by index.

Strauss, Erwin INDEX TO THE SCIENCE FICTION MAGAZINES 1951-1965, 1966 MIT Science Fiction Society. Author, Title and Issue indexes with a check list of magazines indexed.

INDEX TO THE SCIENCE FICTION MAGAZINES 1966 - 1970, 1971, ... 1989, beginning 1971 the New England Science Fiction Association published a number of SF magazine indexes. Author, Title and Issue indexes with a check list of magazines indexed.

Tymn, Marshall B. and Mike Ashley, SCIENCE FICTION, FANTASY, AND WEIRD FICTION MAGAZINES, 1985 Greenwood Press, 970 pages, $95 A comprehensive critical description of over 600 main stream magazines, associated magazine-like anthologies, academic periodicals, major fanzines and non- English language magazines. Critical descriptive essays are 1/2 to 40 pages. Includes bibliographies of source information and primary library holdings; a concise publication history with the dates of title changes, size and format changes, volume data, publisher changes, editorial changes, and issue price. Includes index to several hundred major cover artists; and a chronology of magazines started by year.


Barron, Neil ANATOMY OF WONDER: A CRITICAL GUIDE TO SCIENCE FICTION 4th edition, 1995, R. K. Bowker, 912 pages. $55 Contains no 1st edition or price information whatsoever. This is THE guide of what to read or films to see. Revised and updated edition has concise summaries and evaluations of some 2,100 works of fiction and over 800 works of non fiction published from the genre's beginnings to the present. Includes listings of films based on SF novels and short stories, guidance to books on video and audio tape, public and private research libraries SF magazines, comics, and art. Excludes foreign language SF. (See 3rd (1987) edition for most comprehensive guide to foreign SF).


INTERNET SPECULATIVE FICTION DATABASE, A user contributory Sci-Fi database with 7164 Authors 37,030 Titles of books, stories, anthologies, magazines. Includes contents and publication data when available. Intends to list ALL genre SF.

SCIENCE FICTION, FANTASY, & HORROR: 1984-1996, From the monthly Books Received column in LOCUS MAGAZINE, covers ALL books, anthologies and magazines from 1984 thru 1996 including contents and publication data. A huge annual reference book version: SCIENCE FICTION, FANTASY, & HORROR: 1984-1996 by Charles N. Brown & William G. Contento (Locus Press, 1986-1996) was available, however the internet version is constantly corrected and updated

Contento, William: INDEX TO SCIENCE FICTION ANTHOLOGIES AND COLLECTIONS,COMBINED EDITION, at: A comprehensive, complete, updated and corrected index compiled from INDEX TO SCIENCE FICTION ANTHOLOGIES AND COLLECTIONS, (G.K. Hall 1978) and INDEX TO SCIENCE FICTION ANTHOLOGIES AND COLLECTIONS 1977-1983, (G.K. Hall 1984). Catalog of all SF anthologies thru 1983 searchable by story or author, and by book title or author/editor. Excellent reference for finding original magazine publication of any SF story that has been anthologised.


Howlett-West, Stephanie. INTER-GALACTIC PRICE GUIDE, Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror. The ONLY current price guide to books by modern and classic Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror authors. This 8 1/2 by 11, 408 page book has 20,000+ entries. A compilation of 89 catalogs over the year from 29 different dealers, spiral bound with laminated covers and includes a detailed introduction. There are multiple listings for many titles. Entries are coded for condition, signed, inscribed, limited, ARC, Proof, association, etc. Cover price $35.

Shep Iiams
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