In the early 1980s, future three-time Prometheus Award-winner Victor Koman collaborated with Andrew J. Offutt on Offutt’s SPACEWAYS series for Playboy Books (which was sold to Berkley after Koman came onboard). Koman wrote two novels in the series, to which Offutt added his own scenes, edited, and published under the series pen-name “John Cleve,” with covers painted by famous artist Ken Barr. These paperbacks are long out of print, but are some of the earliest examples of Koman’s published writing. Copy is very fine, except for some browning of the inside of the covers — a cardstock-quality problem with #13, yet not with #17.
The SPACEWAYS series comprised adult-oriented, erotic science-fiction (think Fifty Shades of Star Wars), designed to bridge the gap in Offutt’s œvre between his renowned career in mainstream science-fiction and his clandestine career in pornography. (His son, author Chris Offutt, wrote a memoir titled My Father, the Pornographer in 2015.) Koman answered Offutt’s call in 1982 to help with guest-writing novels in the popular series (along with authors such as Geo. W. Proctor, Jack C. Haldeman II, G. C. Edmondson, Roland J. “Jeffrey Lord” Green, and Dwight V. Swain, among others), based on the, shall we say, writing ability Koman demonstrated in his own erotic science-fiction novel, Starship Women.
Adapted from the book-cover blurb: Forbidden Planet! Even death does not mean the end of Captain Jonuta. Like the legendary Phoenix, he is back at the helm of the Coronet, living the only life open to a Galactic spacefarer: raiding, plundering, slaving — all while eluding the long arm of TransGalactic Watch.
Following a clue from his luscious captive Verley, Jonuta traces his old enemy, the “thoughtlegger” and technology smuggler Marekallian Eks, to the “off-limits” planet Arepien. But in spite of the unclad beauties eager to engage in sexual congress with the gods descended from the sky, Arepien proves to possess hidden dangers. And when Major Zahrad of TGW appears on the Coronet’s tail, Jonuta realizes that the decisive, life-or-death battle must at last be waged.