Wednesday, October 24, 2007

A New Editor For Startling

Belarski created another excellent cover for the July, 1941 issue of Startling Stories. I am really starting to appreciate his work a lot more than I used to.
Oscar J. Friend takes over as editor with this issue, a post he will hold until the middle of 1944. The July issue leaps right into Gateway To Paradise, Jack Williamson's novel. The last issue featured a novel of an Earth submerged by the oceans. This time "America Becomes The Last Oasis In A Desert World That Rivals The Planet Mars". The illustrations are quite attractive, but are unsigned.
The first short story is "Calling of the Harp" by Maria Moravsky (1859-1947). "Two Men Burn Their Dimensional Bridges Behind Them-and Leave Themselves Hanging in Mid-Air." The illustration is by William A.Kolliker. (1905-1995) Kolliker was a native of Switzerland who settled in the U. S. in 1922. He also illustrated children's books and was a noted painter. His work is on permanent display at the El Paso International Museum of Art. (Thanks to Arthur Lortie and Steve Ericson for the information.)
Mort Weisinger's "Thrills in Science" follows with anecdotes about William Harvey and his studies of the circulatory system; Charles Parsons and the development of the steam turbine; and Edouard Benedictus and the development of laminated safety glass. As with previous installments, these little stories are entertaining and educational, and, one hopes, helped readers develop an interest in the science behind the fiction.
"Crossroads of the Universe" by William Morrison (pen name of biochemist Joseph Samachson, 1906-1980) is the next short story. "All's Fun at the Interplanetary Fair-Until McGovern Uncovers an Exhibit that Spins Him Onto a Universal Merry-Go-Round." The illustration is by Wesso. Morrison also wrote stories for DC Comics and created the Martian Manhunter.
Next comes this issue's Scientifiction Hall of Fame Story, "The Man-Beast of Toree" by Ralph T. Jones, selected by James V. Taurasi (1917-1991). "Man Need All Ten Fingers to Climb the Long Ladder to Civilization." The illustration is unsigned. The story originally appeared in Wonder Stories Quarterly for Fall of 1931. Ralph T. Jones is one author I have not been able to find any information on. Day's Index has this as the only Jones story listed.
"The Ether Vibrates" is next, promoting the next issue's novel, written by John Coleman and Hulbert Burroughs, sons of the creator of Tarzan. Letters this time are from Lynn Bridges of Detroit, listing his favorite stories; Vida Claire Schneider of Mount Vernon, NY, writing about her favorite stories, thankfully not a dry list; Edward C. Connor of Peoria, IL, rating his favorite stories; R. D. Chittock from England writes of the shortage of good fantasy stories due to the war and praised Eando Binder; Bill Adams of Santa Anna, Texas, praises Belarski and details why he has liked a number of stories; Jim McDonough praises Hamilton's A Yank At Valhalla and appreciates Bergey's covers; and The Denvention Committee, (Olon F. Wiggins, Lew Martin and Roy Hunt) give a convention update, guests to include Heinlein, Van Vogt, Rocklynne and Doc Smith. And that leaves the old space dog Sgt. Saturn to close the column. If Weisinger did create the Sergeant, Friend proves to be just as annoying in the role.
The Scientific Crossword Puzzle is next and then the Review of the Science Fiction Fan Publications. It includes the usual contributors; "Spaceways" from Harry Warner; "Nepenthe" by Earl Singleton; "The Science Fiction Fan" by Olon F. Wiggins; Scienti-Comics by Phil Bronson; "Voice of the Imagi-Nation" from Forrest J. Ackerman; and "Zeus" by Ronald B. Levy, Bert F. Castellari and Roma A. Castellari makes its way from Australia.
Closing out this issue is "Meet The Author". Jack Williamson discusses some of the science and politics that have gone into his story.
In all, this is another good issue with a lot of good reading. The September issue is just around the corner.


Anonymous peconpie said...

This is a general comment. Just found your site and am enjoying it tremendously. I am 76 yrs old and have been reading Science fiction and fantasy since the early 1940s. So as I look at the many covers and read your comments I am taken on a sentimental voyage of nostalgia. I look forward to continuous postings from your group. Thanks for doing it.
Garrett (in Eastern Tennessee)

3:05 PM  

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