About SF Paperbacks.com

Hello there, and welcome to my new site, SF Paperbacks.com! My name is Bob Schmitt and I've created this site to showcase the science fiction paperbacks that I've collected over the years. I love robots (for more on this, see my other site, Rombots.com) and science fiction in general, more the stories than the movies — though I enjoy those too — and particularly those stories from the so-called golden age of science fiction (from the late thirties up through the 1950s).

Why SF Paperbacks?

Aside from wanting to showcase the books I've collected, I also wanted to contribute to keeping alive the great stories from the great authors of sf history — most of who have since passed — and just as importantly, the artists that created all those amazing covers. In fact, what initially attracted me to collecting sf paperbacks was the fantastic art of the era. My favorites are those that employ bright, vibrant colors and are more painterly than today's paperbacks. Artists like Edward Valigursky, Robert Schultz and Ed Emshwiller, names that are, sadly, fading from memory. I also love those crazy fonts, and the storytelling aspects of the covers — covers that depict, in dynamic illustration, a scene from the story. Seems like most covers today have little to nothing to do with what's in the actual story. Of course, they're not all like that; there are the fantastic surreal visions of Richard Powers — one of the most prolific artists of the era — as well as many other artists that don't necessarily fit a mold.

Yesterday's paperbacks today

You might also be saying to yourself, "Wow, this guy has some nice looking books in his collection." Well, unfortunately for me, they're not all in that great shape. I've retouched each of the books to remove damage, and color corrected them to reverse the effects of age. My idea was to present what these books might have looked like back when they were new. I'm not old enough to know what it must have been like to walk into a corner drugstore and find, for example, a small rack of Ace Doubles, all bright and shiny, and only 35¢ for two full novels! So, this site is meant to be the next best thing for those of us who missed that period in time — a time when books could be bought with just the spare change in your pocket.

For the same reasons, I went with a modern site design. Seems like most of the Web sites that feature old paperbacks look old too. They either have a retro feel, or are just poorly designed. I wanted to create something that showcases these books in a modern light, like what a Web site would look like if these books were all new and not a half century old.

Of course, all this is very time-consuming, as you might guess, and so the site currently has only a portion of the books in my collection — just those books that I've had the time to retouch and record the information from the covers and interior pages. I'm always working on more and, of course, collecting more books, so be sure to check back often to see what new books have been added.

What's with all the ads?

Well, as you can see, I have included ads on the site. Why? Well, first and foremost I want to be able to afford to buy more books! Any bits I can make from this site go right back into it in the form of more content. Most people I know are generally blasé about ads on Web pages. They either ignore them, or, conversely, find them genuinely useful. Most accept the idea that they help enable good, quality, and continual Web content by helping to offset a fraction of the cost of producing it. However, I also know people who abhor them for a variety of reasons that I can respect, if not entirely agree with. As for myself, I don't mind them as long as they aren't too intrusive, or delay me from getting at the content I came for. Hopefully, you will agree that this is the case here.

I have no illusions that the ads will ever pay me back for the hundreds and hundreds of hours devoted to the site so far, and that I'll be spending on-going into the future (not to mention the cost of all those books!). I'm not complaining, mind you, it’s a labor of love anyway, but every little bit helps. Of course, it would be a dream to do something you love to do and have it support you, but for me, right now, that dream is a pretty fantastic dream — not so much science fiction as it is pure fantasy!

How you can support SFPB

All that said, if you enjoy the site, there are ways you can help support my efforts here:

You can indirectly support the site by purchasing copies of the books here using the Amazon links throughout the site. You get a great book at the same price as going directly to Amazon, and a portion of the sale will trickle back to me.

You can directly support the site by using the PayPal donation link located at the bottom of each page. Any amount helps keep more books coming!

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