March 01, 2007

Origin of the Bookstore, Part the Fifth - The Decor, or "Is this a library or do you sell books?"

For the next eight months we'll be doing a special feature each month in honor of Borderlands' upcoming 10th Anniversary (November 3rd, 2007). We'll share some stories about what Borderlands is and how it got that way.

by Alan Beatts

People frequently comment on how nice Borderlands looks.  Sometimes they seem a little surprised that the shop looks so good and their surprise often seems to be strangely amplified when they consider our specialty.  It was probably best put by Terry Pratchett the first time he visited.  He walked in, looked around and declared, "This can't be a Science Fiction shop, it hasn't sh*t all over the floor!"

Though I don't agree with Mr. Pratchett's assessment of Science Fiction shops in general, I do think Borderlands looks good.  I'll even go so far as to say it looks better to me than most bookstores.  But however nice it looks, the paint scheme, wooden fixtures and floors, oriental carpets, and "old fashioned" touches (like the lock on the bathroom door -- which I think is doing very well for its age, despite the occasional customer who worries about getting trapped in there.  What's so complicated about "wiggle the key in, turn counter clockwise to unlock, now turn knob clockwise to open"?  I should be so lucky as to be doing that well when I'm 100 years old!)  Ummm, what was I saying?  Right . . . .

Zombie Film

by Jeremy Lassen

In celebration of the release of "The Night of the Comet," March is All Zombie Month.  I know next month would be a better fit, with the Easter Holiday, but I'm trying to avoid the ire of the Catholic-Anti-Defamation league.

"Night of the Comet" is a much-talked-about silly 80's comedy zombie film that has never been on DVD.  It is a total artifact of its era, but is definitely worth seeing if you've never had the pleasure of watching it.

Forgive me for repeating myself, but in an all- zombie newsletter there's bound to be some repetition.  "Return of the Living Dead" is the greatest comedic zombie film of all time, so you might consider watching "Return. . ." with "Night of the Comet".  Another repeat recommendation is "Cemetery Man," which was finally released in the States on DVD last year.  It is also known by its original title, "Dellamorte Dellamore," and is the best existential-zombie love story ever put to film.  Another phenomenally successful comedic zombie film is of course "Shaun of the Dead".  If you're living under a rock, and haven't heard of this one, go watch it. It's great.

February Bestsellers

1. Ysabel by Guy Gavriel Kay
2. Mathematicians in Love by Rudy Rucker
3. Un Lun Dun by China Mieville
4. You Suck by Christopher Moore
5. The Terror by Dan Simmons
6. Gods and Pawns by Kage Baker
7. Voices From the Street by Philip K. Dick
8. Off Armageddon Reef by David Weber
9. End of the Story: The Collected Fantasies of Clark Ashton Smith by Clark Ashton Smith, edited by Scott Conners and Ron Hilger
10. Lord of the Silent Isles by Glen Cook

Mass Market Paperbacks
1. Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
2. Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan
3. Woken Furies by Richard Morgan (UK edition)
4. The Voyage of the Sable Keech by Neal Asher (UK edition)
5. Fifty Degrees Below by Kim Stanley Robinson
6. Old Man's War by John Scalzi
7. Proven Guilty by Jim Butcher
8. Tyranny of the Night by Glen Cook
9. Old Soldiers by David Weber tied with A Princess of Roumania by Paul Park
10. To Serve and Submit by Susan Wright

Trade Paperbacks
1. Hardwired by Walter John Williams
2. Grey by Jon Armstrong
3. The Armageddon Rag by George R.R. Martin
4. Final Impact (Axis of Time vol. 3) by John Birmingham
5. The James Tiptree Award Anthology vol. 3, edited by Karen Joy Folwer, Pat Murphy, Debbie Notkin and Jeffrey D. Smith