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Edgeworks 1

1996

The first installment of what was supposed to be White Wolf's 20-volume "complete works of Ellison" was big, beautifully designed -- and hugely disappointing.

The two books included in this single volume seem to have been chosen more for their titles than their merit. The first is Over the Edge, a mishmash of Ellison's late '60s fiction and essays, out of print for 26 years. The four new, previously uncollected pieces are mostly awful; "Walk the High Steel," in particular, would have best been left moldering in the forgotten digest magazine in which it originally appeared. But "Xenogenesis," a long essay examining the psycho side of sci-fi fandom, is fascinating and frightening.

The second book within this book, An Edge in My Voice, a collection of Ellison's columns from the L.A. Weekly and elsewhere, is as good as it was when first published a decade earlier. But no effort has been made to put the essays in current context; the updates advertised as "sprinkled throughout" are few and awkwardly inserted.

Such weaknesses, coupled with an astonishing number of typographical errors, made this an inauspicious debut in a promising series.

Contents

  • Introduction: Good Morning, Folks; I Am Not Kathie Lee Gifford
  • Over the Edge
    • Foreword: The Frontiers of Edgeville (by Norman Spinrad)
    • Introduction: Brinksmanship
    • Pennies, Off A Dead Man's Eyes
    • The End of the Time of Leinard
    • 3 Faces of Fear: An essay
    • Blind Lightning
    • Walk the High Steel
    • Shadow Play
    • The Words in Spock's Mouth: An essay
    • From a Great Height
    • Night Vigil
    • Xenogenesis: An essay
    • Rock God
    • Ernest and the Machine God
  • An Edge in My Voice
    • Foreword (by Tom Snyder)
    • Introduction: Ominous Remarks for Late in the Evening
    • 61 chapters, dated 25 March 1980 through 21 August 1984, punctuated with many "interim memos," letters and other miscellaneous asides
    • Afterword
    • Index

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White Wolf hardcover 1996
(first edition)

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