1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
More early Jack Vance,
This review is from: Magic Highways: The Early Jack Vance, Volume Three: 3 (Hardcover)
After Dream Castles, its nice to see an "early Jack Vance" volume which actually collects his early works, published 1946-1956. These are generally pulp tales of the era, without the distinctive Vancian voice in full. They are a mixture of the space opera of the day, and 7 (of the 10 written) Magnus Ridolph stories which are basically space detective stuff, always with a twist or two (these are pretty clearly Vance, but the balance of the volume could - almost - have been written by anyone). But its all great fun to read.
Together with Hard Luck Diggings, The Jack Vance Treasury, and Wild Thyme Green Magic, there is now a "Complete Magnus Ridolph" across the volumes Sub Press has published. The full TOC:
Planet of the Black Dust
Men of the Ten Books
The Planet Machine
Dover Spargill's Ghastly Floater
Winner Lose All
Sabotage on Sulfur Planet
The House Lords
Sanatoris Short-cut (from here all is Magnus Ridolph)
The Unspeakable McInch
The Sub-Standard Sardines
The Howling Bounders
The King of Thieves
The Spa of the Stars
To B or Not to C or to D
There is an introduction to the stories, a few notes about each of them: but several of the stories are referred to by one name in the introduction, and another name in the table of contents and in the introduction itself. Somebody goofed here - not as badly as Haffner Press's "experimental" or "non-traditional" listing of a table of contents wildly inaccurate in the information it conveyed in Terror in the House, but still it's a little confusing.
Normally I have been torn between 4 and 5 stars for these Sub Press Vance volumes: this time its torn between 3 and 4 (though ultimately its 4, because Magnus Ridolph is just so much fun). I don't know if there will be an Early Jack Vance vol4 - surely the old short stories must be running a little thin by now - but if this is the final volume in the collection, its still worth adding to your shelf.