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Friday Fiction

Most Fridays we feature a fiction title that is usually anything pulp, odd covers, odd titles and anything else worth discussing! These are NOT necessarily awful.

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Friday Fiction: Australian Hospital

Australian hospital romance cover

Australian Hospital
Dingwell
1980 (original copyright 1955)

I found this book digging through the donation pile and loved the cover art. I think the drama of the woman biting her finger is just awesome. Dingwell’s catalog of over 80 titles is impressive by any standard. I usually get a kick out of these vintage titles for the cover art alone. The women always look a bit unhinged, and this one is no exception.

We featured a few of her books: Sister Pussycat (who doesn’t love that title?) and Nurse Smith, Cook.  This title is similar to most romances of the period. The awful guy is the right guy and there is the requisite misunderstanding between our lovers. Don’t worry things will all work out by the end of the book.

Mary

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Friday Fiction – Anne of Green Gables

Series: Anne of Green GablesAnne of Green Gables (series)
Anne of the Island, Anne of Ingleside, and Further Chronicles of Avonlea
Montgomery
1915, 1939, and 1920 (original publication dates)

Submitter: 25 – 30 years ago, my mom sometimes worked a shift at a tiny branch library near our home. The whole family has since moved away, but a few days ago we did a road trip and visited old friends, and we stopped by the lovely new branch library that has replaced the tiny old one. While browsing along the YA shelves, I was stunned to see these books, sad remnants of the entire series that once lived on the shelves. As a kid, I frequently saw these exact volumes and marveled at their ugliness. They were old and hideous then, and were probably largely responsible for my reluctance to read anything Anne-ish. (Jonathan Crombie later changed my mind, and I read them many times over — in new paperback editions!). I can’t BELIEVE these books are still there. Somebody chose to pack them up and move them to the new branch! And clearly, new generations of young readers are still refusing to pick them up, because they aren’t worn out YET.

Holly: Wow! They really should replace these with newly published copies with modern-looking covers. A brand-new, squeaky-clean library branch deserves some shiny new classics. These have what Mary calls “mom stink” on them. Anything mom loved or that looks like it came from mom’s era is an automatic no-go for some kids. Depending on the publication date of these copies, they might be collector’s items! In other words, inappropriate for your basic public library teen collection where they will not be carefully handled.

Friday Fiction – License to Drive

License to Drive coverLicense to Drive: a novelization
Singer
1988

Submitter: I thought this was an awful book because first, I hate movie adaptation books as a genre; second, it’s SO old and dated—from my high school years—and I was embarrassed to see this movie when it came out (I didn’t, but my friends did); third, the dialogue and photos are just seriously cheesy; and finally, it looks like it might have been for school market distribution through Scholastic, which is just awful. I mean, god speed to the Coreys but they really needed to not make this as a movie, let alone a book.

Holly: Fun fact: A. L. Singer is the pseudonym for Peter Lerangis. I don’t really get the movie adaptation book thing either. Or TV shows, for that matter. God bless capitalism, I guess! If you can make an extra buck on something popular, have at it. This book held up pretty well for a paperback, but that could be because no one has laid hands on it in 20+ years.

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