This is a primer for Masterton fans new and old on where to find the books from GM's extensive catalog. This is drawn from my own experience of collecting horror novels. While there are certainly many who know better than I do about this subject, based on the number of e-mails I have gotten asking where to find copies of specific GM titles, I think this could be a helpful addition to the CAOGM site.
Step 1 - What book do you want?
The first step in procuring GM's books is deciding which title or titles it is you are looking for. Most of the time when someone is looking for a book they know exactly what title it is that they want, but often I will be contacted by a reader describing a book they used to own but they only remember plot elements or character names. Masterton has also written series of books (Night Warrriors, Manitou, Rook) and you may want to read the next book in the series but not be sure what it is called. Or maybe you are just looking for books you haven't read yet.
Some good starting places in determining what book(s) you want to obtain would be:
- The Official Graham Masterton site bibilography.. This site contains an extensive categorized bibliography with synposes for most of GM's titles.
- The Cover Art Site which has a long list of Graham Masterton titles along with pictures of what they look like, which can be a useful tool when searching through bookstores.
Actually having 'seen' a book has been useful to me many times when searching through the wrecked racks of books at a used bookstore. Often I'll spot a book which looks awfully familiar stuck in the back somewhere and realize it's the book I wanted, when I might have missed the info on the spine!
Step 2 - You know what you want. Now where do you get it?
Obviously this is the most important part of this primer. Finding certain Masterton titles can sometime be a challenge, so it's important to have lots of sources available to check. I've broken the list below into two sections, shoe leather and online.
Shoe Leather - Going to Bookstores
Visiting used bookstores is often the best deal for finding Graham Masterton's titles. When shopping online, a 2 dollar paperback usually costs between 6 and 7 dollars after shipping is added. I travel quite a bit in my job, and the first thing I do when going on a business trip (or vacation for that matter) is check out what used bookstores are in the area I am travelling to.
The best bet for Masterton titles are obviously bookstores which stock contemporary fiction. When looking for prospects you want to rule out used bookstores which only sell first edition antiquarian titles. Avoid the types of places where they would look at you funny if you asked for a copy of Night Warriors.
Remember that Graham Masterton has written books in many genres and under many pseudonyms, so be prepared to look through every section in the bookstore. Make sure to check:Where do you find lists of bookstores? Well, the Internet is a great place to start. Often just by going to a search engine like Google and typing in a query something like "Used Bookstore (insert city you are interested in here)" will return a few good hits. The online yellow pages in the U.S. (or the print version once you get where you are going) can also be a big help. For example, Verizon's yellow pages as www.verizon.com allow you to search by city/state and type of business.
- Horror - of course, make sure to check for both Masterton and Thomas Luke here.
- Historical Fiction - many of Graham's historical sagas are found here.
- Science Fiction - I have seen books like Death Dream in the science fiction section even though they would more properly be considered horror novels.
- Spy/Mystery/Suspense/Crime - Good place to look for novels like Condor, Ikon, Tengu, and the Alan Blackwood novels.
- General Fiction - Always take a look.
- Romance - Hey, you may feel like a wimp, but sometimes it pans out.
- Adult/Social Science - Graham's sex manuals are often found here.
Online Associations like Booksense or The American Booksellers Association offer great searches for bricks and mortar bookstores of their members.
Bookhunter Press publishes regional guides of the United States which include thousands of bookstores along with maps, phone numbers, etc. I haven't personally used one but I have heard taht they are good references.
Click here for a list of used bookstores ALL OVER THE WORLD from the Usenet. It is pretty good although it is a bit hard to navigate through.
New Pages has a list of U.S. used booksellers broken down by state. Not very comprehensive but it may work in a pinch.
You can also occassionally unearth at Charity shops and Thrift Stores. Make sure to check and see if any of those exist in the areas around you.
Some used bookstores allow you to leave your name and number with books you are interested in and if they show up they will call you!
Just a final note - authors do not receive any royalties on books purchased second hand, so I always do my best to buy all the new releases as they come out to make sure my favorite authors, especially Graham Masterton, have my financial as well as moral support!
The World's Largest Bookstore - The Internet
Obviously the Internet makes finding the books you want a much easier task than it used to be in the pre-online days. One thing I have found in tracking down Graham's books on the net is that prices vary widely and it pays to shop around. There are many resources, some overlapping, from which to order books and you should search them all before you buy.
A few tips when buying books online:
- Make sure there is a good description of the book listed, that way if you expected a pristine paperback and something that looks like it has been used by an elephant as toilet tissue shows up, you have reason to complain
- Always deal with companies that accept returns
- Use credit cards if possible, it's easier to track charges and get money back
- When buying from sites such as E-Bay or Half.com, check the seller rating and make sure this person isn't the type to wait three months before posting your book.
- This is just a timesaver... There is a scientist named Masterton who has written a ton of books. So if you do a search on author, make sure to enter 'Graham Masterton' as opposed to just the name 'Masterton' unless you are looking for a copy of Chemical Principles 2ND Edition
Okay, now that we have gone over some hints, let's look at a small list of some of the thousands of places to get Graham's books online:
- Amazon - everyone knows about Amazon. Great prices, customer service, etc. One thig I have noticed about Amazon in the Graham Masterton context is that new hardcover editions of some of Graham's books will just randomly show up in Amazon's catalog. My guess is someone discovered a box somewhere at the publisher warehouse. I ordered both Flights of Fear and Death Trance directly from Amazon in the last couple of years. Amazon also lists used copies of books for sale in their marketplace.
- Half dot com - Half is E-Bay's non-auction site. Regular folks put items out there to be sold at a specific price. There is a book section on Half with quite a few Masterton titles. I have always gotten great service there.
- abebooks - Abebooks is the mother of all online bookstore with hundreds of GM titles listed. If you have an afternoon or five to spare do a search on GM's name and stand back!
- Alibris - Alibris is a nice online bookstore with four or five pages of Graham's stuff. I purchased a new copy of Manitou Man here for 20 bucks recently and got a copy of The Devils of D-Day for less than ten bucks. That being said, a lot of the books on Alibris can be a bit on the expensive side so make sure to consult all of the sites listed here before you buy.
- Ebay - E-Bay always has some interesting Graham Masterton titles for sale, including some of the rarer ones. I got a copy of 'A Mile Before Morning' from E-Bay recently and lost a bid for a hardcover copy of 'The Hell Candidate' (it was a withdrawn library title, I didn't want it anyway, sniff, sniff).
- Addall - Add All has a nice meta-search of used book sites that can help you find what you want at a decent price. Give it a try.
- Bibliophile is another meta-search engine. Not very pretty but it works.
- Bookfinder is another meta-search engine with agreements with thousand of used bookstores.
- Book Directory is yet another online used book search engine.
- Bublos is - you guessed it - an online books search and price comparison engine. Quite good actually.
- Barnes and Noble BN has some great GM titles in stock and a readers advantage program which allows you to save 10%.
- Bookstore Junkies now this IS COOL. Bookstore Junkies consists of a group of several hundred people who try to locate EACH OTHERS want lists of books at the local used bookstores. That is a very intriguing idea although I am not a member.
- Overbooked dot org is an incredible resource for ravenous readers and includes all sorts of fun for readers including lists of forthcoming releases, lists of online and bricks and mortar bookstores, discussion groups, etc.
Step 3 - Start Reading!
Okay, hopefully this primer helped you find what you were looking for, now go read it!
If you have any questions about the content here, please E-mail Ken and ask away.