§ June 11th, 2008 § Filed under paperbacks § 1 Comment

I do have a library in the house, with overflowing bookshelves. Primarily, though, the books tend to be hardcovers or comic strip collections or graphic novels. I have yet to put out my collection of plain ol’ standard issue paperback novels, as I need to build some special shelving for them and I just haven’t done it yet. In the meantime, they languish, alone and afraid in the dark, packed away in boxes and stored in the upstairs closet of horror and lament.

On Monday, when I was goin’ through some of the boxes stored away in that closet, I went through the book boxes as well, and pulled out a few items of some minor interest.

First is this, a first printing of the initial installment of the long-running Wild Cards shared universe superhero saga (published in…well, it’s copyrighted “January 1987,” but I’m pretty sure it was out in late ’86):

Boy, my copy of this is in crappy shape. I read the thing tons of times. And I have a preference for this particular cover style…later volumes (and later printings) would use Tim Truman covers, among others, which is fine. I just liked the…peculiarity of the original images. (You can decide for yourself with this Wild Cards cover gallery.)

By the way, my main purpose for pulling this out of the box is to lend it to Employee Aaron, who’s been jonesing to read this series but has been having trouble getting his hands on the first volume, and who will also face dire consequences should anything happen to my book while it’s in his possession.

I also had a thing for movie novelizations, which is…weird, admittedly, but for several years I actively sought them out, even for films I hadn’t seen and even had no intention of seeing.

Like I said, weird.

I did see this film, on a double-bill with The Goonies, no less (and the novelization for which I also had, ’til I gave it to pal Corey…no relation to any Corey that may have been in the film):

This adaptation was written by George Gipe, who also wrote the adaptations for Gremlins and Back to the Future) (which, ahem, I also own, sadly enough). Just on a whim, I thought I’d look up Mr. Gipe on the interweb, and see what else he may have done…

…and, whoa, turns out he died in ’86, from complications from a bee sting. Wow, that came as a surprise. That’s too bad. Mr. Gipe also worked on a couple of Steve Martin movies, and wrote the novelization for Melvin and Howard.

Now here’s a novelization I’ve mentioned on the site once or twice before, but I don’t think I’ve whipped out a scan of the cover for you. It is the one, the only, the astounding Howard the Duck movie adaptation:


I had a habit of saving bookstore receipts and using them as bookmarks…and it turns out the receipt for this book was still in it, 22 years later. So, here you go, proof someone spent CASH MONEY on this novel:

Exact change, even. Yeah, I was one of those kids.

Other novelizations I have or had: Buckaroo Banzai (liked it much better than the movie…but still sold it for an obscene amount of money on the eBay), Tron (I think I didn’t see the movie for years after I’d read the book…I’ve yet to watch the film straight through from beginning to end, in fact), Raiders of the Lost Ark (mentioned before on the site that this book had “variant foil covers” — really just different colors of covers you could choose from), The Black Hole (boy, I was fascinated with this film, even though it’s crap…well, except for the kick-ass robots), all the Star Trek and Star Wars films (I think it was Return of the Jedi where they actually spelled out all of R2D2’s tweets and whistles: “‘ArooopTWEETwheeee!’ exclaimed Artoo”), the first three Halloween movies (hand-me-downs from the parents…apparently there’s a book for the fourth film, too)…

…and, of course, novelizations for the first Swamp Thing movie (written by Len Wein) and the second, Return of the Swamp Thing, written by Peter David (who included several characters named after assorted Swamp Thing artists and writers).

Any particular novelizations you folks out there have a fondness for? (Or can’t believe you own…I’d like to hear that, too!)
(Updated 6/2017)