Cover to Cover: Bruce Lee’s Fighting Method – Advanced Techniques

Posted: January 25th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , | 2 Comments »

Sometimes I buy books I don’t plan on reading.

It doesn’t happen very often — honest — but I’ve done it a couple of times. Sometimes it’s been because a book is just so unusual that I can’t resist it. Sometimes I’ll pick up a book because I think the design is beautiful, and I appreciate it more as an object than prose.

And in the case of Bruce Lee’s Fighting Method: Advanced Techniques, it’s because it’s just so damn cool.

The book is the fourth and final installment in the Fighting Method series, and is crammed full of step-by-step lessons in Lee’s Jeet Kune Do style of martial arts, as well as pictures of Lee beating the hell out of co-author Mitoshi Uyehara. I’m sure the photos are posed, but as we all know Lee could kill 10 normal men even when he was faking it.

For the most part, Advanced Techniques is a fairly dry collection of fighting methods; “your rear hand should be in the guard position” and “the stop-kick is not necessarily a countering blow,” things like that. Which is why I really doubt I’ll ever read it front to back. On the other hand, it is the kind of book I definitely leaf through for the pictures, the casually inserted philosophy, and the literal poetry (not Lee’s, though, and that’s too bad).

But mostly, it’s just nice to have some distilled, Bruce Lee coolness on the book shelf.

I’ve made the back cover a little bigger (click to see) so it’s easier to go through the list of books Ohara Publications was offering. There are six books on being a ninja, more books by and about Bruce Lee, and even Chuck Norris telling you how to win karate tournaments. If it doesn’t include sweeping the leg, I’m going to be really disappointed.

Bruce Lee’s Fighting Method: Advanced Techniques
Cover design/photo: Unknown
1996 edition (Ohara Publications, Inc.)

Cover to cover: Starman Jones

Posted: January 11th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , | 2 Comments »

A lot of people have to deal with addiction in their lives. Some are a prisoner to alcohol, to drugs or to some other, just as destructive compulsion. I’m not any different, and have suffered from a nearly uncontrollable urge — a need — that I’ve never really been able to resist. I am weak, and for almost my entire life I’ve thrown time, money and sometimes my personal well-being into this monster’s bottomless maw.

Of course, I’m talking about used paperbacks.

And my addiction has a certain flavor; the more genre-ey, the better. Especially if it has a ridiculously awesome cover. Oh, man, the covers! Horror and science-fiction books have the best, hands downs, and I will gladly leave a used books store with an armful of paperbacks chosen just because the covers gave me a hit of giddy euphoria. Aaahhh — that’s the good stuff.

With that in mind, I thought I’d share some of the most beautiful, most creative or just plain nuttiest covers in my stacks in what will be a new, ongoing feature. And  just to be sure you get the full dose of art and promo copy (an art in itself), we’ll be taking a look at both the front and back covers.

First up: Starman Jones!


Starman Jones
Cover art: Lee Rosenblatt
1975 edition (Ballantine Books)