Books: The Best of Lester Del Rey
A magazine editor, like a movie producer, is often forgotten. Most people know who directed "Jaws," but how many can name the producers? In the same vein, not many people have read the works of Lester Del Rey. As a magazine editor and as a co-founder of the Del Rey imprint of Ballantine, Lester had an eye for talent, helping to publish authors like Isaac Asimov, Philip K. Dick, and Terry Brooks. Not suprisingly, he could write pretty well, too.
I saw "The Best of Lester Del Rey" in a Half Price Books while on vacation, and I knew it was going to be worth the $2.00 asking price, and then some. Now, I'm not saying Del Rey is or was a great sci-fi writer - frankly, he was an editor for a reason. Many of the stories here are okay, but not memorable or noteworthy. But there are some gems, including the famous "Helen O'Loy" (a touching story about an android wife).