Re: RARA-AVIS: Grimhaven

Date: 03 May 2000

That is true, in most cases. But GRIMHAVEN is a bit of a different story. The copies available these days on the Internet can be traced back to one source, and Betsy Willeford told me she herself gave the manuscript to that source (and that source provided me with a copy a few years ago for the cost of Xeroxing, so I have no doubt mine's authentic). It's unmistakably Willeford. Compared to the other Hoke books, it is much shorter -- in terms of length more like some of his paperback originals, I think. And it certainly doesn't hold up in quality to the other four Hoke books. But then Willeford didn't intend for it to be a stellar work. The fascinating part about the manuscript is seeing how Willeford recycled chunks of it into NEW HOPE FOR THE DEAD and SIDESWIPE. He really was a master craftsman.


It is always risky to buy an unauthenticated manuscript. The risks increase when the work was willingly withdrawn by the author. My guess? Any Grimhaven ms circulating now might at best be 50% Willeford. Possibly far less than that. MS, like gossip, tend to take a little from every handler. To buy an
"authentic" Xerox copy? Wow! There's provenance for ye! PB

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