By Lucius Shepard
The stories gathered here conduct the reader from the wastelands of the near future to the zoned-out bacchanals of Hollywood, from the fevered bordellos of Central America to the hallucinated revels of redneck country, from the broken hears of wandering loners to alluring fantasy realms just beyond the threshold of perception. And when the journey is over, eternal contrasts - of man and woman, bosses and workers, responsibility and escape, conformity and freedom - stand in more powerful definition than ever before...
By Tanith Lee
VOLKHAVAAR is a novel of witchcraft and wonders on a world far removed from those we know. Here the gods contend for power - the Dark forces against the Light - and here an entire city and its land is plunged into the shadow of an eil beyond anything conceivable. It is the story of Shaina the slave girl and of Volk the outcast who enslaved himself to cosmic forces to gain total power - and of how they were finally to meet and flash - with an entire world as their prize.
Vault of the Ages
By Poul Anderson
Archaeologists, studying the past, are handicapped by the fact that relics are usually few and in poor condition. Often, one is not even sure where to look for them. Out of such finds, from tombs, ruined cities, swamps, deserts, and any other place where men of the past have left some trace of themselves, the archaeologist tries to build up a picture of these men's lives and civilizations. but there are great gaps in our knowledge and probably always will be. For Instance, we cannot yet read the inscriptions left by the ancient Cretans, and so are in the dark about many features of their high civilization...
The Vulture is a Patient Bird
By James Hadley Chase
A brilliant but sadistic safe-breaker; a beautiful seductress; an expert young hunter and an ace pilot with a shady past - this is the team that undercover operator Armo Shalik assembles to steal the priceless Borgia ring from millionaire Max Kahlenberg's closely guarded fortress in the remote and deadly African bush. But when Kahlenberg finds out they are coming, the gang's expedition turns into a strictly one-way safari - to slaughter ...'Insanely readable' Observer
Valley of the Flame
By Henry Kuttner
Somewhere there was a radioactive fire that could perform miracles of super-science. Somewhere there was a place where cat-people prowled, where time was altered, and incredible mysteries held their secrets of power and fortune for the daring discoverer. Deep in an unexplored jungle, Brian Raft sought the secret of the legendary Valley of the Flame . . .
By Robert Charles Wilson
Spin ended with the alien Hypotheticals setting a vast Arch over the Indian Ocean. Those who sailed under it found themselves on Equatoria, another planet entirely.In Axis, a secretive Equatorian community of Fourths - humans who've had their lives extended by illegal Martian technology - raised a boy, Isaac Dvali, to communicate with the Hypotheticals. Interstellar clouds of tiny fragmented Hypothetical nanomachines rained down on Equatoria, an some began to grow. Isaac and Turk Findley, a tough bush pilot an former drifter, were absorbed by a vast concatenation of those growths.Now, Turk Findley has awakened ten thousand years later, to be collected by the people of Vox - an Equatorian group that's obsessed with the Hypotheticals. The Vox have been waiting for Turn and Isaac for a very long time. Meanwhile, the story of Turk and Isaac among the people of Vox is being scrawled in notebooks by a disturbed man in a hospital on twenty-first-century Earth, in the years following the Spin . . .
Voyage to the City of the Dead
By Alan Dean Foster
Far, far Upriver, where knowledge failed and fable ruled, in a frozen land of demons and monsters, the City of the Dead stood guard over a great treasure. Now the Mai, Delta-dwellers of the planet Horseye, as befitted a race of busy traders and merchants, had a great respect and love for wealth. But, a prudent species, they knew also that danger was, well, dangerous. So their thoughts turned to the Humanx couple, Lyra and Etienne Redowl, impatiently waiting permission to explore the planet. Suddenly bureaucracy was benign, permits permitted and their epic voyage up the most spectacular river chasm in the whole Humanx Commonwealth was underway...
The Viaduct Murder
By Ronald Knox
When four friends stumble across the body of a fellow club member during a game of golf they suspect murder. The police aren't so sure, and when it looks as though the official verdict will be suicide the men are outraged. Convinced that there had been 'dirty work' and that 'the police aren't very good at following up clues', they undertake their own investigation.A classic Golden Age whodunit that involves the reader in a charming game of detection as the protagonists use Sherlockian methods to unravel the mystery.
The Valley of Creation
By Edmond Hamilton
In that hidden valley, land of strangely forbidding beauty, Eric Nelson, soldier of fortune, faced a battle weirder and more savage than any he had ever fought. He was hired to fight for humanity, against beings that seemed to be both more and less than human.The weapons of the enemy included centuries-old powers of magic and superstition . . . but Nelson fought grimly, even when his mind was helplessly trapped in the body of a wolf. Then came the climactic test of his allegiance, the knowledge that more than just humanity was at stake . . . and the final mind-shattering discovery of an alien secret that lay buried in the Cavern of Creation!
The Voyage of the Vigilance
By Garry Kilworth
Woodworld is a lodestone world, a planet with a magnetic field so strong that it can pluck spaceships out of the sky. Which is exactly what happened to Maxy, the youngest cadet in the space fleet. Stuck on Woodworld, with little hope of ever being rescued, Maxy must rely on his friends to have any chance of escape. When one of them is taken captive by Maxy's one-time companion, Baker, he has no choice but to set off in pursuit across the Electric Ocean.
The Virgin Cure
By Ami McKay
A macabre voyage into the underbelly of nineteenth-century New York.'I am Moth, a girl from the lowest part of Chrystie Street, born to a slum-house mystic and the man who broke her heart.' So begins THE VIRGIN CURE, a novel set in the tenements of lower Manhattan in 1871. As a young child, Moth's father smiled, tipped his hat and walked away from her for ever. The summer she turned twelve, her mother sold her as a servant to a wealthy woman, with no intention of ever seeing her again.These betrayals lead Moth to the wild, murky world of the Bowery, filled with house-thieves, pickpockets, beggars, sideshow freaks and prostitutes, where eventually she meets Miss Everett, the owner of a brothel. Miss Everett caters to gentlemen who pay dearly for companions, and the most desirable of them all are young virgins like Moth.Through the friendship of Dr Sadie, a female physician, Moth learns to question and observe the world around her, where her new friends are falling prey to the myth of the 'virgin cure' to heal the incurable and tainted. She knows the law will not protect her, that polite society ignores her and still she dreams of answering to no one but herself. There's a high price for such independence, though, and no one knows that better than a girl from Chrystie Street...
Very Old Money
By Stanley Ellin
The enormously wealthy Durie family occupies a gigantic baroque turn-of-the-century mansion on Manhattan's Upper East Side. The family, whose fortune was established in Colonial times, is traditionally shy of all public notice and proud that no scandal has ever touched its name.Newly married Michael and Amy Lloyd, bright young teachers in a private school, suddenly find themselves unemployed and apparently unemployable. When all cash and credit are gone, Michael and Amy decide to take up positions on the Durie household staff. But as the Lloyds learn to cope with their positions as servants they slowly become aware that the seventy-year-old matriarch Margaret Durie is, for her own unexplained reasons, enlisting them as her helpless accomplices in a subtly designed series of events that will ultimately lead to a thunderous scandal ... and a ghastly death.
Venus of Shadows
By Pamela Sargent
The Venus Project calls upon the strongest and most courageous to create a prosperous world in the dismal wilderness of Venus. Those who demonstrate the skill and the passion to embark on this adventure must transform the barren planet in the midst of political and cultural unrest. When Risa and Benzi, children of Iris, one of the first people to partake in this project, find themselves in opposing forces on the battlefield, it is their love and perseverance that will determine the destiny of the new land.
By Greg Bear
This is the first published collection of short stories by one of the foremost voices in science fiction today. This significant volume contains many characters and situations that later evolved into their own novels. "Mandala" features technologically perfect cities that eject their sinful human occupants, a premise that can be found at the root of Bear's later novel, STRENGTH OF STONES. In "Hardfought", Bear brilliantly handles the classic science fiction dilemma of human communication with aliens. Other stories include "The Wind From a Burning Woman" in which a woman holds the world hostage by controlling a giant asteroid; "Scattershot", in which the inhabitants of many universes meet in an undefined limbo space; and "Petra", a story of a world where chaos rules, stone moves and the mind controls reality. Hailed by readers and critics alike, THE VENGING has been described as "an excellent collection" and its author praised as "one of the freshest writers to break into the science fiction field in many a year".
By Philip K. Dick
It began with a blinding light, a divine revelation from a mysterious intelligence that called itself VALIS (Vast Active Living Intelligence System). And with that, the fabric of reality was torn apart and laid bare so that anything seemed possible, but nothing seemed quite right. It was madness, pure and simple. But what if it were true?
The Villa Girls
By Nicky Pellegrino
Four friends, a sun-drenched escape, and a holiday that will change everything...THE VILLA GIRLS is the story of four young women who decide that wherever they are in the world and whatever they're doing they'll meet every few years for a holiday together somewhere sunny. Despite life taking them in very different directions, their snatched days in the sun in little hidden villas are crucial to them all. Escape, celebration, recovery - over the years the holidays change their lives.Rosie was always the odd one out - initially only invited as the others felt sorry for her, but it seems that in the end, she might be the one whose life is touched the most by her villa days. For it's there that she meets Enzo. The eldest son of an olive oil dynasty in southern Italy, he is being groomed to take over one day as head of the family.Rosie and Enzo have a holiday romance that seems set to become something more serious until she discovers he is not entirely what he seems. Years later they meet again and this time Rosie must decide how much she is prepared to compromise for the sake of love...
Venus of Dreams
By Pamela Sargent
Iris Angharads, a determined, independent woman, sets herself one massive goal: to make the poison-filled atmosphere of Venus hospitable to humans. She works day and night to realize her dream, with only one person sharing her passion, Liang Chen. It seems impossible to make Venus, with its intolerable air and waterless environment, into a paradise, but Iris succeeds. And in doing so, she also creates a powerful dynasty, beginning with her first born, Benzi Liangharad.
By Lynsay Sands
After seven hundred years of life, Marguerite Argeneau finally has a career. Well, the start of one, anyway. She's training to be a private investigator, and her first assignment is to find an immortal's mother. It seemed simple enough, until Marguerite wakes up one evening to find herself at the wrong end of a sword. Now she realizes she's in way over her head.Julius Notte wants to protect Marguerite, and not because someone just tried to take her head off. She doesn't know it yet, but she's his lifemate and he's determined to woo her. It's been over five hundred years since he last courted a woman, but surely the techniques haven't changed. Now if only he can keep her alive - so to speak - so they can have that happily-ever-after.
Vampires are Forever
By Lynsay Sands
Inez Urso is beginning to have her doubts. Her business associate Thomas Argeneau has some interesting traits, like an allergic reaction to the sun, excellent night vision, and not much of an appetite for food. And to top it all off, he just tried to bite her neck ... but maybe that was a sign of passion. If so, she'd be happy to experience more, despite her determination not to mix business with pleasure.Well, if not forever, at least two hundred years. Inez is the most beautiful woman he's seen in centuries. Those luscious lips, seductive curves, and her elegant neck ... he just couldn't resist the temptation of one little bite. Now Thomas will do anything to convince her that only an immortal like him can satisfy her all night long ...