Gene Wolfe's Book of Days (1981)



  • First edition Doubleday Science Fiction hardcover, 1981; cover by Lawrence Ratzkin
  • Arrow (UK paperback), 1985; cover by Bruce Pennington


This book was later incorporated, in its entirety, as part one of the 1982 collection Castle of Days. All contents except the "Introduction" had been previously published.

The "Introduction" also contains "the story for 'Date Due.'"


  • Back-cover blurb of the Arrow edition:
Gene Wolfe's world is nothing like our own... It is bizarre and fantastical, grotesque and wonder-filled. It is a world of prowling houses, pregnant cars, space-age slaves and toys that are more than life-like. It is a world of shadows and unexceptional violence where man's technological fantasies have surpassed his dreams.

From this world comes a story for every holiday from New Year's Eve to Christmas Day - each marked by Gene Wolfe's unique imagination. And each, of course, about a world nothing like our own.


A red-letter collection of stories from the award-winning author of THE BOOK OF THE NEW SUN
  • Doubleday Science Fiction hardcover:
    • Front jacket flap blurb:
    GENE WOLFE'S BOOK OF DAYS is a calendar of science fiction delights. In a solar circuit of marvelous eccentricity, each festive date receives its grotesque monument. How better to mark Mother's Day at the close of the twentieth century than with a story about a pregnant automobile? St. Patrick's Day, Opening Day (the beginning of the hunting season), Earth Day, and Arbor Day are represented too, with a dozen others: we are treated to the visit of an immortal witch to a far-off planet, to alien houses that prowl the woods by night, and to a grand prix superintended by Winston Churchill, in which the opposing teams meet head-on.

    A true feast of science fiction holidays.
    • Back jacket flap bio:
    Gene Wolfe, who has been called "one of the finest modern sf writers" (by The Science Fiction Encyclopedia), "un Proust de l'espace" (by L'Express, Paris), and "an imp of the bizarre" (by a reader of this book in manuscript), is the author of The Fifth Head of Cerberus, The Shadow of the Torturer, and much else. The Science Fiction Writers of America have given him their Nebula, and his novel Peace won a five-hundred-dollar prize from the Chicago Foundation for Literature. The unique anthology you hold, spanning the year from Valentine's Day to New Year's Eve, represents an eclectic selection from his most characteristic work.
    • The back cover lists the contents, as above.

Book of Days trail page