Instapundit informs us that publisher Jim Baen has died, and links to an obituary by author David Drake.
Jim Baen was the proprietor of Baen Books, my favorite publisher for some time now. Baen Books publishes Drake, Lois McMaster Bujold, Elizabeth Moon, John Ringo, David Weber, Eric Flint, Jerry Pournelle, and many, many others. He gave many new authors their first shot, among them Elizabeth Moon and Lois McMaster Bujold, I believe.
A while back, Baen books had this included at the back of each volume:
I found myself in full agreement with Mr. Shelton. And the reason he (and I) looked at the publisher's mark first was because of Jim Baen. He published stuff that was good, not because it was written by a "name." For example, here's a list of my favorite Baen books:
LIKES BAEN BOOKS
BECAUSE THEY TASTE GOODRecently we received this letter from Travis Shelton of Dayton, Texas:I have come to associate Baen Books with Del Monte. Now what is that supposed to mean? Well, if you're in a strange store with a lot of different labels, you pick Del Monte because the product will be consistent and will not disappoint.
Something I have noticed about Baen Books is that the stories are always fast-paced, exciting, action-filled and seem to be published because of content instead of who wrote the book. I now find myself glancing to see who published the book instead of reading the back or intro. If it's a Baen Book it's going to be good and exciting and will capture your spare reading moments.
Another discovery I have recently made is that I don't have any Baen Books in my unread stacks -- and I read four to seven books a week, so that in itself is a meaningful statistic.
The General series by S.M. Stirling and David Drake:And that's just a taste. I'm not a big fan of fantasy, but Elizabeth Moon's The Deed of Paksennarion is excellent, as is Lois McMaster Bujold's The Spirit Ring.The Forge,The Miles Vorkosigan saga by Lois McMaster Bujold,
The Belisarius series by David Drake and Eric Flint,
The Hammer's Slammers series by David Drake,
1632 and all of its sequels by Eric Flint et. al,
The Baen website informs us, "The surviving partners of Baen and his heirs intend to continue Jim's legacy of innovative, independent publishing. Longtime Baen Books executive editor Toni Weisskopf will be acting publisher and direct day-to-day operation of the company." I hope they are up to the task. They have great big shoes to fill.