longer version of Heinlein's The Puppet Masters?

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Ben Crowell

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Aug 13, 2007, 2:46:22 PM8/13/07
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Can anyone help me figure out the straight dope on the longer
version of Heinlein's The Puppet Masters?

The page at

http://www.tulane.edu/~lmiller/SciFi/scifi_3.html

states that the uncut version was first published in 1990.
However, the isfdb page at

http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/title.cgi?1358

shows a 1986 version with a page count of 347, which is
a lot greater than the 175ish of previous mass market
editions. All the more recent editions seem to be reprints
of the 1986 one, having the same page count.

The only version that seems to be currently in print is
isbn 0345330145, a Del Rey mass market pb with a page
count of 347 with a publication date of 1986. This happens
to be the edition I own, and the print is very large, so
I'm not sure that the page count really indicates that it's
the longer version. The Tulane page says the publication of
the uncut version was made legally possible by Heinlein's
death in 1988, so it doesn't seem possible for the 1986 version
to be the longer one. Gifford's RAH: A Reader's Companion
confirms that it was not until 1990 that the restored version
was published, and there were actually a total of three versions,
if you count the version that was serialized in Galaxy, and
hacked on by HL Gold, based on the 60k version that Doubleday
accepted. Gifford thinks the 90k 1990 version is much better
than the 60k 1951 Doubleday version.

Ben Crowell

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Aug 13, 2007, 4:05:44 PM8/13/07
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Curiouser and curiouser. The isfdb page shows two different editions
with the isbn 0345330145. I thought isbn's were never supposed to be
reused for different editions of the same book. The 1986 edition with
that isbn is the one I have. If you put that isbn in on bn.com or
amazon.com, they tell you it's a 1986 edition. However, if I use the
"Inside this book" features on amazon, it shows that it's clearly the
1990 version: different front and back covers; "first revised edition,
Jan 1990" on the copyright page; a word count of 96k; and more text
added on page 1, where the narrator gives some anticommunist political
commentary.

David M. Silver

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Aug 13, 2007, 4:53:08 PM8/13/07
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In article <46c0b997$0$4649$4c36...@roadrunner.com>,
Ben Crowell <crow...@lightSPAMandISmatterEVIL.com> wrote:

_Were_ they truly intelligent? By themselves, that is?
I don't know and I don't know how we can ever find
out. I'm not a lab man; I'm an operator.

With the Soviets * * * .

Starts the uncut version, denominated inside the book on the copyright
page facing page 1 is the first revised edition, January 1990, in the
version I have (fifth [paperback] printing, May 1990) Ballantine/33014.

The paperback cover I have is this one:

http://www.wegrokit.com/pm91.jpg

Note: it says "FIRST TIME IN PRINT! The entire uncut novel" in that
little white ellipse. Apparently, from the cover shown on Amazon.com,
they've moved the DelRey logo and they've removed that little white
ellipse some time over the past fifteen or sixteen years.

Were they truly intelligent? By themselves, that is? I don't know and
I don't know how we can ever find out.
If they were not truly intelligent, I hope I never live to see us
tangle * * * .

Starts the cut version, the 1951 Doubleday version, which my original
paperback having bit the dust long ago I have in _A Heinlein Trio_
(Doubleday, Book Club edition, printed whenever).

--
David M. Silver
http://www.heinleinsociety.org
"The Lieutenant expects your names to shine!"
Robert Anson Heinlein, USNA '29
Lt.(jg), USN, R'td

Ben Crowell

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Aug 13, 2007, 5:28:39 PM8/13/07
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David M. Silver wrote:
>
> _Were_ they truly intelligent? By themselves, that is?
> I don't know and I don't know how we can ever find
> out. I'm not a lab man; I'm an operator.
>
> With the Soviets * * * .
>
> Starts the uncut version, denominated inside the book on the copyright
> page facing page 1 is the first revised edition, January 1990, in the
> version I have (fifth [paperback] printing, May 1990) Ballantine/33014.
>
> The paperback cover I have is this one:
>
> http://www.wegrokit.com/pm91.jpg
>
> Note: it says "FIRST TIME IN PRINT! The entire uncut novel" in that
> little white ellipse. Apparently, from the cover shown on Amazon.com,
> they've moved the DelRey logo and they've removed that little white
> ellipse some time over the past fifteen or sixteen years.
>
> Were they truly intelligent? By themselves, that is? I don't know and
> I don't know how we can ever find out.
> If they were not truly intelligent, I hope I never live to see us
> tangle * * * .
>
> Starts the cut version, the 1951 Doubleday version, which my original
> paperback having bit the dust long ago I have in _A Heinlein Trio_
> (Doubleday, Book Club edition, printed whenever).
>
Thanks for the info -- it's good to have this confirmed from someone who
has physical access to both versions, considering that amazon and
bn.com's databases seem to be mixing data from the two
different editions that are both bizarrely assigned the same isbn.
I'll look forward to reading the long version.

I think there are at least three versions of the front cover. My 1986
version is plain. There's a version with a red band across the top
saying he's a bestselling author, and another version with the white
ellipse labeling it as uncut. The copyright or the text on p. 1 would
seem to be the reliable way to tell which is which. It's surprising
that the page counts are all so close to 340, especially since the
amazon.com "Inside this book" image shows a font in the 1990 edition
that fits exactly as many words on a line as the 1986 version. Maybe
the top and bottom margins are wildly different, or the leading is
narrower? The difference in length is supposed to be significant --
96k for the long version, and 2/3 of that for the short one.

David M. Silver

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Aug 13, 2007, 11:13:32 PM8/13/07
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In article <46c0cd02$0$4906$4c36...@roadrunner.com>,
Ben Crowell <crow...@lightSPAMandISmatterEVIL.com> wrote:

> I think there are at least three versions of the front cover. My 1986
> version is plain. There's a version with a red band across the top
> saying he's a bestselling author, and another version with the white
> ellipse labeling it as uncut.

Yes, the paperback I originally had that bit the dust into old brown
flakes (reminding me of me) is this one:

http://www.wegrokit.com/pm63.jpg

The signet edition with Robert A. Heinlein printed sidewise and
vertically in what looked like a bold Boldini font, and a drawing of an
open flying saucer. It is shown on the isfdb listing as having 175 pages
in the paperback, which is about right for around 52 percent of the size
of the 1990 paperback edition of 340 pages. Smaller, but much closer to
2/3 the size.

> The copyright or the text on p. 1 would
> seem to be the reliable way to tell which is which. It's surprising
> that the page counts are all so close to 340, especially since the
> amazon.com "Inside this book" image shows a font in the 1990 edition
> that fits exactly as many words on a line as the 1986 version. Maybe
> the top and bottom margins are wildly different, or the leading is
> narrower? The difference in length is supposed to be significant --
> 96k for the long version, and 2/3 of that for the short one.

The hard bound and paperback editions are mixed on the isfdb page, and
it's probably a coincidence that the hardbound copies are shown as
around 347 pages (of the cut Doubleday version) and the later paperback
version at 340 pages (of the uncut Ballantine version). The H. L. Gold
cut version, btw, only appeared, or so I understand it, in the 3-part
serial printed in the Galaxy magazine he edited. I've never seen it.

I think you'll enjoy the uncut version. It's quite a bit richer.

Ahasuerus

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Aug 14, 2007, 3:46:55 PM8/14/07
to
On Aug 13, 2:05 pm, Ben Crowell

<crowel...@lightSPAMandISmatterEVIL.com> wrote:
> Ben Crowell wrote:
> > Can anyone help me figure out the straight dope on the longer
> > version of Heinlein's The Puppet Masters?
>
> > The page at
>
> >http://www.tulane.edu/~lmiller/SciFi/scifi_3.html
>
> > states that the uncut version was first published in 1990.
> > However, theisfdbpage at

>
> >http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/title.cgi?1358
>
> > shows a 1986 version with a page count of 347, which is
> > a lot greater than the 175ish of previous mass market
> > editions. All the more recent editions seem to be reprints
> > of the 1986 one, having the same page count.
>
> > The only version that seems to be currently in print is
> > isbn 0345330145, a Del Rey mass market pb with a page
> > count of 347 with a publication date of 1986. This happens
> > to be the edition I own, and the print is very large, so
> > I'm not sure that the page count really indicates that it's
> > the longer version. The Tulane page says the publication of
> > the uncut version was made legally possible by Heinlein's
> > death in 1988, so it doesn't seem possible for the 1986 version
> > to be the longer one. Gifford's RAH: A Reader's Companion
> > confirms that it was not until 1990 that the restored version
> > was published, and there were actually a total of three versions,
> > if you count the version that was serialized in Galaxy, and
> > hacked on by HL Gold, based on the 60k version that Doubleday
> > accepted. Gifford thinks the 90k 1990 version is much better
> > than the 60k 1951 Doubleday version.
>
> Curiouser and curiouser. The isfdb page shows two different editions
> with the isbn 0345330145. I thought isbn's were never supposed to be
> reused for different editions of the same book.

The ISFDB keeps track (or tries to) not only of separate editions of
each book, but also of individual printings. Publishers don't always
assign a new ISBN when they do a second (or tenth) printing, so the
ISFDB can have quite a few "publication records" with the same ISBN.

> The 1986 edition with
> that isbn is the one I have. If you put that isbn in on bn.com or
> amazon.com, they tell you it's a 1986 edition. However, if I use the
> "Inside this book" features on amazon, it shows that it's clearly the
> 1990 version: different front and back covers; "first revised edition,
> Jan 1990" on the copyright page; a word count of 96k; and more text
> added on page 1, where the narrator gives some anticommunist political
> commentary.

Thanks for the heads up! We will start an investigation shortly :)

Derek Lyons

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Aug 14, 2007, 4:34:26 PM8/14/07
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Ahasuerus <ahas...@email.com> wrote:

>The ISFDB keeps track (or tries to) not only of separate editions of
>each book, but also of individual printings. Publishers don't always
>assign a new ISBN when they do a second (or tenth) printing, so the
>ISFDB can have quite a few "publication records" with the same ISBN.

Nor should they. If the content is identical, there is no need for a
new ISBN.

D.
--
Touch-twice life. Eat. Drink. Laugh.

http://derekl1963.livejournal.com/

-Resolved: To be more temperate in my postings.
Oct 5th, 2004 JDL

Jon Schild

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Aug 17, 2007, 3:30:21 PM8/17/07
to
The Del Rey paperback of tyhe long version has many minor cover
variations. Look on the page with all the copyright info. If it says,
at or near he bottom, "First Revised Edition: January 1990" then that's
the long one. Having read both, I don't think the extra text adds
anything significant.


--
Surrealism is just not my cup of tuna.

Keith F. Lynch

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Aug 17, 2007, 11:40:13 PM8/17/07
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Jon Schild <j...@xmission.com> wrote:
> Having read both, I don't think the extra text adds anything
> significant.

It doesn't add any new plot twists. It's the same story, but in more
detail. I prefer the longer version, as I like detail.

I read it last month, since that was when it was set.
--
Keith F. Lynch - http://keithlynch.net/
Please see http://keithlynch.net/email.html before emailing me.

Bill Patterson

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Aug 18, 2007, 12:19:53 PM8/18/07
to

When I read the restored version in about 1995, I realized that there
were a lot of ambiguities and points that were not quite clearly set
out in the 1951 publication, each individually minor enough that I had
simply passed over them at the time, but reading the full context
explained quite a lot of them, "Oh, so THAT;s what was going on . . .
" The restored version is simply the version that should have been
published at the time. I understand (from Ginny Heinlein) that the
main reason for the Doubleday cut was that the editor at Doubleday
thought nobody would buy a 90,000 word science fiction novel, so he
had it hacked into a 75,000 word pulp serial length (since at that
time the great majority of the stuff that was going into boards was
pulp serials). Ironically, H.L. Gold's different "edit"/rewrite for
Galaxy was about 60,000 words. Oddly, that shorter compass feels to
me a lot more "loosely" constructed than either the Doubleday edit or
the full restored text. Without going over the text and examining the
language, I suspect I could trace that impression to the way the
rhetoric has been revised by Gold.

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