"Asylum" is a finalist for the 1943 Best Novella Retro Hugo!
Does it appear that there's a problem with the top of the spine stamping of your copy. That really isn't the case. Take a look.
Transfinite: The Essential A. E. van Vogt contains the most popular and important stories from van Vogt's wide and varied career. Between 1939 and 1986—a span of almost 50 years—almost 100 of his short stories, novelettes, and novellas were published. The stories included in this volume range in scope from the vast reaches of time and space found in "The Rull" or "Far Centaurus" to the more closely defined settings such as in the humorous and possibly deadly "A Can of Paint."
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A. E. van Vogt
Born 1912 in Canada, Alfred Elton van Vogt was one of the science fiction writers who made John W. Campbell's complete renovation of the science fiction field possible. His first stories, "Black Destroyer" and "Discord in Scarlet" (published in 1939 in Astounding) are included in this volume, and remain exciting and full of seminal ideas. His stories are best known for their mind-expanding concepts and their rapid introduction of exciting new ideas that fired the imaginations of his readers. He wrote over 60 novels and almost 100 short stories.
He and his first wife, fellow SF writer E. Mayne Hull, were Guests of Honor at Pacificon, the fourth World Science Fiction Convention in Los Angeles in 1946. His other honors include the Caspar Award for contributions to Canadian Science Fiction and SFWA Grand Master in 1996.
A. E. van Vogt died January 2000 in Hollywood, California—a great loss to the field.