Thursday, April 02, 2015

Thrift Shop Book Covers: "The Foundation Trilogy"

The original Foundation trilogy by Isaac Asimov consisted of Foundation, Foundation and Empire, and Second Foundation. The three novels were based on eight stories published in Astounding Magazine between 1942 and 1950. The first title, Foundation, was published as a hardcover—packaged as a novel—by Gnome Press in 1951, and Foundation and Empire and Second Foundation followed in 1952 and 1953, respectively. I have read that Gnome Press paid royalties rarely and grudgingly.

The editions that caught my eye are mass market reprints from 1964 to 1966 by Avon. The covers are vintage 1960s—a psychedelic slant with detailed but simple images of man and beast and wonderful colors; forest green, sky blue, and burnt orange. The artist: Don Ivan Punchatz.     

Foundation (1966).

The opening sentence:

“HARI SELDON—…born in the 11,988th year of the Galactic Era; died 12,069.”

Foundation and Empire (1966).

The opening sentence:

“The Galactic Empire was falling.”

Second Foundation (1964).

The opening sentence:

“THE MULE. It was after the fall of the First Foundation that the constructive aspects of the Mule’s regime took shape.”

I am particularly fond of The Foundation trilogy; in my middle teens my mother purchased a trade paperback anthology published—in my memory—by Ballantine Books, which included all three novels. I devoured it, lived it. Loved it. And I really wish I still had that copy.  

This is the thirteenth in a series of posts featuring the cover art and miscellany of books I find at thrift stores and used bookshops. It is reserved for books I purchase as much for the cover art as the story or author.


Bill Crider said...

Avon did a boxed set of that edition. I bought it at a thrift store. Sold it on eBay later, I'm sorry to say.

J. Kingston Pierce said...

Terrific covers! Thank you for posting them.


Ben Boulden said...

I actually found FOUNDATION AND EMPIRE, and SECOND FOUNDATION at a thrift store here in Salt Lake a few years ago. I was actually a little disgruntled that someone broke up the set. Assuming of course that at one time someone owned all three.

I found FOUNDATION at a Half Price Books in Fort Worth maybe two years ago while I was there for work. I really miss Half Price Books.