Escape Velocity

A curated Collection of Fantasy and Science Fiction Media

Time to get to know the Escape Velocity Collection’s curators! How? By asking them the questions that really matter! Let’s see what our curators have to say… 

This week’s question is:

What Fantasy/Sci-Fi Author is most well-represented on your bookshelves, and how do you feel about that?

I recently moved and when I was putting books back in my bookcases (and trying to figure out logical ways to sort them), I was wondering who takes up most shelf space. I did a quick count to find out that Julian May narrowly inches out Tolkien with eleven books to ten. I figured I’d ask the other curators to do the same!


I was quite surprised by the result (and a bit ashamed to admit that I haven’t had the chance to read most of those May books yet…), but really May coming out on top is largely due to recent thrift store finds. It’s just that I loved the Saga of Pliocene Exile and since her books aren’t in print anymore, I pick them up any chance I get.



For me, it seems to be a tie between J.R.R. Tolkien and Robin Hobb, with an impressive (or shocking?) number of sixteen books each. Tolkien would win if I also counted several encyclopedias of Middle-Earth that were technically not written by him, but simply collect his worldbuilding notes. Alternatively, if I were to attribute The Children of Hurin to Christopher Tolkien instead of his father, Robin Hobb would win.

I’m quite pleased with the end result either way, I must admit. Robin Hobb, being my favourite author, certainly deserves the whole bookshelf I’ve dedicated to her. In fact, I would gladly welcome some new additions. On the other hand, Tolkien is one of the primary reasons I fell in love with Fantasy in the first place. Middle-Earth will always have a place in my heart and my bookcases.

Addendum by Jasmijn: “In addition to your 16 books, I think we have some of my Robin Hobb copies lying around in our appartement as well, so in numbers she would definitely win in our household.”

Whether it is to be considered fantasy or not is an ongoing debate, but on my bookshelf Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne is very well represented. I love collecting the book in different languages as well, and since I know a lot of the stories by heart I enjoy reading those copies as well from time to time. The start of this collection was a Latin copy I happened upon in a secondhand bookshop. This was the beginning of the end, haha.



I’m not much of a book hoarder, to be honest. I live in a studio appartment and have moved around a bit, so I’ve had to keep the volume of books I own down as much as possible. I also have two sisters, so growing up our books were exactly that: OUR books. As a result, most books I have on my shelf now are recent acquisitions.

Robin Hobb and Terry Pratchett come in at a tie, with 6 books each. However, I’ve read two of the Robin Hobb books, and none of the Terry Pratchett ones. Let me explain:

I thrift most of my books. This means you never quite know which books you’re going to find. A long time ago, I found two beautiful hard covers of the last two books in the Farseer series by Robin Hobb. I only recently acquired the first book in that trilogy, so I wasn’t in the position to start reading them.

Half of the Terry Pratchett books are a collaboration he did with Stephen Baxter. I thought it was a series, but there’s no discernable order to them, so I’ve never picked one up to read. I just don’t know where to start. When you have plenty of other books still to read, that’s a little bit of a death sentence. The other three are The Colour of Magic, and two more books in German. I can mostly read German, so I figured I’d give them a try. Can’t guarantee I’ll have understood them well enough to review them, though…

After I counted I was not surprised that Robin Hobb was at the top of my list with 12 books, considering she is my favourite fantasy author. However, it did surprise me that Neil Gaiman followed closely at 10. I don’t have one long shelf dedicated to his work as I have with Robin Hobb, but instead his books have infiltrated the different shelves where I keep my fantasy novels, short story collections, childrens books, graphic novels, and books about mythology. I did not even realise how many of his books I have picked up over the years! But I have enjoyed every single one, so I am happy to have them around.



First, I must excuse myself, because I am not an owner of many sci-fi or fantasy books. Most I read, I lent from others or I listened to them. The second excuse: I regularly clean up my bookshelves and do not keep every book. So, with that out of the way, what do I have left? A whopping 5 books of Douglas Adams, namely the whole Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy-series (without the 6th of Eoin Colfer). They are however easily matched in volume by three George R.R. Martin-books – which I did not read but my wife did. The good news is: there is room on my bookshelves for improvement!

That’s it: another soul-searching question answered!

Still curious? Visit each curator’s page to see what they’ve recently been up to!

Check out our reviews of the media discussed in this post here::

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