While arguing over why her laptop is so slow and why it takes half an hour to load Audible.com up each time we want to use it, my wife recommended that I listen to the first 10 minutes or so of the audio book "Warriors" by George R.R. Martin.
Now, I'm unfamiliar with this book, and the audio book is about four sections of 7 to 8 hours each, so you know that it's massive. It is apparantly an anthology style book of stories that you don't see any more. And that's part of the point.
My wife only had directed me to the introduction, and after listening to it, she is quite correct. It's worth a listen.
The author takes us back in his mind to the various bookstores of his youth in NYC when their were spinner racks of paperbacks and comic books right next store to each other. Paperbacks were thinner then, and cost 35 cents. Comics were a dime. And with a dollar allowance each week, he had to carefully decide how to balance comics, paperbacks, candy, the occassional malt and a skeetball game down the street.The raise in price from a dime to 12 cents really blew his budget.
The reason why I mention this is because he does a really good job of describing the type of books, comics and paperbacks that were available, and the concept of genre separation had not yet occured.
So, if you can hunt up a copy of this book "Warriors" or if you're lucky enough to have an audible or similar reading program, listen to just the initial 14 minutes: the introduction. It will be well worth your time.