Usborne’s ‘The KnowHow Book of Spycraft’, 1975

During the Cold War, a new archetypal establishment role joined the pantheon of soldiers, cowboys, and cops that often peopled children’s games: the spy. Equipped with false identities, given to using hidden surveillance devices, and communicating in strange codes, this newcomer was perfectly suited to the duplicitous, mistrustful mood that was the constant background noise of the times…

New Worlds for New Children: The Armada Sci-Fi Anthologies

By Richard McKenna

It’s one of the peculiarities of SF literature—and perhaps of genre writing in general—that the imagery generated to sell and promote it has often proved to be more visionary and transformative than the writing itself. Serious-minded SF fans are often heard complaining about this irony, claiming (not without some justification) that Star Wars, say, is not actually science fiction but rather fantasy, or just straight-up infantile dross…