This is the snazzy new cover of Gerald Kersh’s Clock Without Hands, a collection for which I’m proud to have been chosen to introduce. Kersh is an underappreciated author, and Valancourt Books is doing us all a service by bringing his work back into print. Noir lovers may know him best as the author of Night and the City, but he also wrote fantastic speculative fiction tales and wonderful, gritty and garish portraits of London life. Born in America, but sometimes the best observers are outsiders (read any of Canadian Doug Coupland’s novels set in America, if you want proof).
To quote from the Valancourt site:
Clock Without Hands relates the unexpected and macabre impact of a sordid murder on the mild-mannered neighbour who witnesses the crime. In Flight to the World’s End, a desperate boy flees his cruel life at an orphanage, only to discover a harsh truth about the world outside. And in Fairy Gold, a clerk plays a malicious practical joke on his impoverished co-worker, with unpredictable and startling consequences.
A great slice of Kersh’s work, along with Nightshade and Damnations, a story collection with an introduction by Harlan Ellison, which Valancourt reprinted last year.
His novel Fowler’s End is one of my favorites, as grubby and grotesque as a Sam Fuller flick. Michael Moorcock wrote the intro for that one.
Rather esteemed company to rub elbows with.