One benefit of being a reader of a certain vintage—old enough to remember inkwells in school desks, say, if not old enough to have used a dip pen —is the giddy joy of encountering insert ads in mass market paperbacks. It wasn’t just that they weakened the spines of the books or that some of them were youth-inappropriate cigarette ads. A fair fraction of them were variations on this ad.
Founded in the early 1950s, the mail order Science Fiction Book Club was a godsend for isolated readers like myself . Not only did they automatically send out books until actively stopped (a wonderful way for chronic procrastinators to encounter new authors), but they offered wonderful collections, anthologies, and omnibuses of unusual size. These were tomes heavy enough to stun a moose. For SF addicts, these books were like being able to order our drug of choice by the 100kg sack.