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Orphans For Sale - Cheap

For a limited time only, Brick Tower Press is offering ebooks of classic works by Alfred Bester, Roger Zelazny, and others for sale on a "pay what you want" basis.

They call it a "Humble Books Bundle," and you can find it here:


I note it here because the offerings include two Wild Cards titles, DEUCES DOWN and DEATH DRAWS FIVE. These two volumes -- books number sixteen and seventeen in the overall series, but essentially stand-alones -- are almost impossible to find in their original print editions, as many fans have informed me over the years. When Byron Preiss's company iBooks picked up the series, after a seven-year hiatus following the last Baen volumes, they reprinted a number of the original books, but also added these two originals. DEUCES DOWN was an anthology of original stories about deuces, wild carders with trivial and in some cases absurd superpowers. DEATH DRAWS FIVE was a solo novel by John Jos. Miller, featuring Carnifex, John Fortune, Fortunato, and introducing John Nighthawk and the Midnight Angel.

When Byron Preiss died in a tragic traffic accident in 2005, however, iBooks did not long survive him, tottering into bankruptcy a few months later. Brick Tower Press acquired all the remaining assets of iBooks, including inventory and contracts, in the bankruptcy proceedings. DEUCES DOWN and DEATH DRAWS FIVE were part of that, along with the Zelazny and Bester titles you see offered as part of the Humble Books Bundle.

The print-runs of the iBooks WC originals were never large, and the distribution was scattershot at best... especially for DEATH DRAWS FIVE, which was published only days before iBooks closed its doors for goods. Brick Tower did subsequently release trade paperback editions, but those were not widely distributed either.

So if you're one of the numerous WC fans who has been searching for these two titles to complete his collection, here's your chance... but best move quickly, since the offer will expire soon.


Feb. 18th, 2016 01:12 pm (UTC)
Thumbs up!
I blow off Humble Bumble messages for the most part as I've too many games already. Books on the other hand, I never have enough of. My Nook is now overflowing with excitement.
Feb. 18th, 2016 02:59 pm (UTC)
Great Collection
Quite the excellent collection. Always did want to read Damnation Alley.

(The collection with "The Last Defender of Camelot" may also be of interest to GRRM fans, since that's the story he adapted for The Twilight Zone, an episode that provided George a couple of noteworthy anecdotes regarding the limits of Hollywood budgets back in the '80s and the dangers of sharp bits of steel being swung around unprotected noses...)
Feb. 18th, 2016 05:11 pm (UTC)
I already got those two hard to find Wild Cards books, but thanks anyway.

I know it's offtopic, but I don't know where else to post this. I just finished reading LOWBALL, and I loved it. Thanks. And I don't want to post spoilers, but what happened to one of the older characters (created by John J. Miller) had me in tears. To veterans like me, who've been reading since Book 1, it hits very hard.

Also, as a Brazilian, I want to make a correction. There is a Brazilian character in the book called El Monstro. Monstro is indeed the correct Portuguese word for "monster", but we don't use "el", that is an Spanish article. It should have been "O Monstro".

Edited at 2016-02-18 05:12 pm (UTC)
Feb. 18th, 2016 07:21 pm (UTC)
I don't believe he was actually Brazilian, was he? My recollection was that he came from Jokertown.

(Though it has been a year and a half since I last perused LOWBALL, so my recollection may be fuzzy).

We have a story actually set in Brazil coming up on Tor.com. Watch for that one.
Feb. 19th, 2016 01:58 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the reply. I got the impression he lived in Jokertown, but his family was Brazilian. I am looking forward to the story set in Brazil.

Any chances of HBO or Netflix doing a Wild Cards TV show? That would be my dream. I think there is a movie in the works, but really, only a TV show could do justice to Wild Cards.

Feb. 19th, 2016 07:46 pm (UTC)
A television show is under development, but not at HBO or Netflix.

More details when I have 'em.
Feb. 22nd, 2016 02:39 pm (UTC)

I was under the impression that it was a movie, but a TV show is really the way to go, in my opinion. A 2-hour movie could never capture Wild Cards.

Not HBO will mean that they'll have to tone down the sex and violence, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. I really hope they can keep Fortunato and stuff like that, though.

Also, I'm really curious if the series would be set in the 1980s, various periods, or current times.
Feb. 22nd, 2016 06:32 pm (UTC)
Couldn't tell you. I have an overall deal at HBO to develop new television shows for them, and this is not an HBO development, so I cannot be involved... except in the sense of licensing the rights as the trustee for the WC Trust. And that deal was signed years ago.
Feb. 24th, 2016 08:13 pm (UTC)
Many thanks.

I really hope the show gets made.

When Game of Thrones became a hit TV show, I am one of the few people who immediately thought "Cool. This means a Wild Cards series is much closer to being made."

I like ASOIAF alright, but my real passion is for Wild Cards (and also your pre-ASOIAF fiction).
Rocha Neto
Feb. 19th, 2016 12:58 am (UTC)
I can not express in words how much I admire your work, I am fascinated by the universe that you created. Thanks for everything yourself and you have a very long life. Greetings from your big fan.
Terri Davenport
Feb. 19th, 2016 07:24 pm (UTC)
I love Humble Bundle! Plus, proceeds go to charity. I've gotten many, many video game bundles giving proceeds to organizations like Doctors Without Borders. It's a truly wonderful idea!
Feb. 20th, 2016 04:16 pm (UTC)

Glad I saw this! Got the lot.



George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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