I remember when I first bought this one in a used paperback store in the 1970’s in Utica, N.Y., where my mother would take me after a visit to the allergy specialist. The book was originally published in 1949 and has been reissued periodically, but tends to go out of print. This appears to be the 1966 Ace Books version, priced at 75 cents (as the poem on the back attests). Silverlock is shipwrecked and find himself on an island where heroic tales have come alive (if I recall, he seems quite unaware of the stories, or he would have figured out what to do in a few cases). I reread it dozens of times as a teenager. Somehow it survived years of culling of my books. I have no memory of the quality of the prose, but I’m pretty sure it was a pleasing adventure yarn. I am hesitant to ruin the good but fading memories by cracking it again. For years, the book and its author were a mystery to me, for I would have gobbled up more, but could never find anything. Now, through the miracle of Wikipedia, some of my questions are answered. There was apparently a sequel in 1981, but I had moved on.

AuthorPatrick LaForge