Search Results for: Lin Carter

Vintage Treasures: Weird Tales #1, edited by Lin Carter

If you’ve hung around Black Gate for any length of time, you’ve heard us talk about Weird Tales, the greatest and most influential pulp fantasy magazine every published. Weird Tales has died many times, and crawled out of the grave and shambled back to life just as often (if you’re a Weird Tales fan, you’ve heard countless zombie metaphors about your favorite magazine). When the pulp version of the magazine died in September 1954 after 279 issues, many believed it…

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The Ballantine Adult Fantasy Series: The Spawn of Cthulhu edited by Lin Carter

The Spawn of Cthulhu H. P. Lovecraft and Others Lin Carter, ed. Ballantine Books (274 pages, October 1971, $0.95) Cover by Gervasio Gallardo Lin Carter edited more than one anthology for the Ballantine Adult Fantasy series. Up until now, I’ve not discussed any of them. One reason is that where I am sequentially, there have only been two. The other reason is it’s easier to discuss a single novel than the contents of an anthology. I’m going to break with…

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Vintage Treasures: Down to a Sunless Sea by Lin Carter

We’re big fans of Lin Carter here at Black Gate. He was one of the most influential figures in 20th Century fantasy, chiefly as the editor of the Ballantine Adult Fantasy (BAF) line of paperback reprints, the six volumes of The Year’s Best Fantasy Stories, and the groundbreaking Flashing Swords! sword & sorcery anthologies. He was also one of the hardest working professionals in the genre. Carter edited a BAF volume every single month between May 1969 and April 1974 (65…

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His Name is Vengeance: Kellory the Warlock by Lin Carter

Poor Lin Carter: perhaps the greatest champion heroic fantasy ever had, an editor with few equals, one of the most knowledgeable fan boys in the world, but a poor writer. I think he would have liked his stories and novels to be remembered more fondly than they are. I believe Kellory the Warlock proves he had the potential to have been a better writer. Carter remains despised among the Robert E. Howard scholars for his involvement in Sprague de Camp’s Conan…

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Lin Carter and the Ballantine Adult Fantasy Series

Many fantasy fans don’t realize how good they have it these days. Fantasy stories dominate the best seller lists, set box office records, and are some of the highest rated programs on television. This hasn’t always been the case. In the years following the Second World War, fantasy in popular culture went into a decline. The reasons for this are beyond the scope of this post, primarily because I don’t want to write a doctoral thesis. Once was enough. What…

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A Contagious Love of Fantasy: Lin Carter’s Imaginary Worlds

I recently did a review here at Black Gate of L. Sprague de Camp’s 1976 Literary Swordsmen and Sorcerers: The Makers of Heroic Fantasy. De Camp’s book is one of the few histories of the genre of fantasy around, and it is a great and enjoyable book. But it’s not the only one, nor probably the most favored. I get the sense from others’ comments that the Best History of Fantasy title probably goes to Lin Carter’s 1973 Imaginary Worlds. Each…

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Jack Williamson, Lin Carter and Appendix N: Advanced Readings in D&D

Mordicai Knode and Tim Callahan are making me look bad. I know, what else is new. But seriously, these two have taken on the project of a lifetime — reading every author in Gary Gygax’s famous Appendix N (all 29) and reporting back in great detail every week at I took on the project of a lazy Saturday afternoon: read their posts whenever I got around to it and report back here every two weeks or so. Sounded easy…

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Why I Like Lin Carter

Linwood Vrooman Carter (1930-1988) was one of the heroes of my youth. In the decades since his death his reputation has wallowed in the aftermath of the Last Great Sword & Sorcery Boom. He helped start it, with the Conan books he and L. Sprague de Camp brought back into print, edited, and in many cases wrote, as with the Ballantine Adult Fantasy Series of works he edited and thus brought back into print. (Not adult fantasy as in sex,…

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Forbidden Magic, Murder, and Disco: The Carter Archives by Dan Stout

Dan Stout’s The Carter Archives: Titanshade, Titan Day, and Titan Song (DAW, 2019-21). Covers by Chris McGrath Whenever an author wraps up a trilogy, we bake a cake in the Black Gate offices. But what if it’s not actually, like, a trilogy? What if the third book is just a rest stop on a long and exciting journey toward five books? Or seven? Or, Wheel-of-Time like, a stupendous 12 volumes (or 14, or whatever the heck it is)?? If it’s…

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Vintage Treasures: The Magic Toyshop by Angela Carter

The Magic Toyshop (Dell, 1969). Cover art by Michael Leonard The Magic Toyshop, first released in 1967, was Angela Carter’s second novel. She eventually published over a dozen novels and collections between 1966 and 1992, when she died of lung cancer at the much-too-young age of 51. Three decades later she’s still remembered as a feminist icon and master of magical realism; in 2008 The Times ranked her 10th in their list of “The 50 greatest British writers since 1945.”