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Add to Basket. Language: English. Brand new Book. Strange mysteries abound in a small Maine town. And when Wyck is found dead under peculiar and inexplicable circumstances, who is responsible--and why? The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck, Alexander Laing's odd hybrid of horror, crime and science fiction, was an unlikely bestseller and critical success when first published in , and it was later selected by Karl Edward Wagner as one of the top horror novels of all time.

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Alexander Laing | Open Library

Seller Rating:. Available From More Booksellers. About the Book. We're sorry; this specific copy is no longer available. AbeBooks has millions of books. After the book's finished, you probably won't remember a single one of them. Not in McDowell's books, and especially not in this one. India a precursor of Lydia in McDowell's later Beetlejuice script and her father Luker, the alcoholic Big Barbara, the maid Odessa Red, each of the characters really comes to life and practically leaps off the page.

If I wasn't terrified by the story, I was nonetheless carried along by it: the first two-thirds or so of the book move at a fairly leisurely pace, leading up to the real horror towards the end, but it's never dull for a moment and keeps you turning the pages. We're thrilled to be continuing the Michael McDowell rediscovery in with three more of his novels. If you're a horror fan, these are must-reads, but even if you normally don't read horror books, you'll find plenty to admire in the writing of McDowell, who is a very fine writer indeed. Christopher Priest - The Affirmation This one's cheating a bit, since it's actually being published Jan.

Until recently, like many readers in the U. I'd heard of The Prestige , of course, and seen the Christopher Nolan film, but otherwise, I didn't know much about Priest. This is probably in part due to the fact that most of his books have been unavailable in the U. The neglect of his works here in the U.

The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck (valancourt 20th Century Classics)

When I stumbled upon an old copy of The Affirmation , I knew from the jacket blurb that this was the sort of novel I'd love: it's a book that blends and transcends genres -- not exactly SF, not exactly fantasy, not exactly a thriller -- and features an intriguing premise and a very clever literary mindgame that will make you want to reread the book as soon as you've finished it, just so you can see how it was all done. An extremely enjoyable, page-turning read, and we're excited to be offering it. Lord Dunsany - The Curse of the Wise Woman Speaking of books that don't fit easily into genres most of ours don't , this is another: equal parts fantasy, political thriller, autobiography, and nostalgia, Lord Dunsany's The Curse of the Wise Woman is one of the best books I read all year.

In fact, both of us here at Valancourt Books would rank this among our top reads for It's temping to say that the fantasy aspects concerning Tir-nan-Og, the land of eternal youth, or the supernatural parts with the 'wise woman' witch are the most interesting, but I found myself engrossed even with the parts of the book dealing with Irish political intrigue or hunting foxes and geese on the bog. His prose here is, as always, mellifluous, and the book is charming and delightful throughout. If you haven't read Dunsany before, or if you read some of his early short stories and they weren't for you, give this one a shot: you're almost certain to like it.

John Wain - A Winter in the Hills This book is about pages long, but it doesn't feel like it. You'll wish it had been double the length. John Wain's books are always good Hurry on Down and The Smaller Sky were favourites of mine from our list , but this one is really something special.

The plot, which is simple enough, involves an English linguist, Roger Furnivall, who spends a winter in Wales to learn the language and gets caught up in a local dispute in which a large corporation is attempting to put all the local bus operators out of business.

The last holdout is Gareth, a taciturn hunchback, and Roger determines to interfere and help Gareth save his bus route and his livelihood from the encroaching forces of corporate greed. It's hard for me to say why I liked the book so much. The plot is all right, the writing is of course solid, but somehow it's a book that adds up to more than the sum of its parts. I think perhaps it has to do with the unusual earnestness with which Wain writes: it's hard not to root for him, and for his characters.

Very highly recommended. Michael Campbell - Lord Dismiss Us This book is so good that it's almost unthinkable that its inclusion on this list is owing entirely to an accident of fate. Here in Richmond we have a thrift store that benefits the gay community center; I stumbled upon an old copy of the book there, never having heard of it. But from the publisher's blurb and the rave reviews on the cover from Iris Murdoch, Christopher Isherwood, Angus Wilson, and others, it was immediately evident that this was a book we needed to republish.

Tracking down the estate took a considerable amount of detective work, but was well worth it, as this was my favourite book of ours this year. Set in a boys' boarding school based on the Irish school that Campbell himself attended, and peopled with characters that were easily recognizable as Campbell's teachers and schoolfellows , the book focuses on two characters, both struggling with their attractions for members of the same sex. One is Eric Ashley, a former pupil of the school, now returned to teach there, and who is tormented by his attraction to young men.

The other is Carleton, a student, who is in love with Allen, a boy a year younger. Meanwhile, with the school declining in quality, a new headmaster, Crabtree, has been brought in, and he is determined to stamp out any homosexual conduct in the school. His efforts, though, are thoroughly misguided and often lead to hilarious disaster, as when he arranges for a girls' school to visit for the day. But it would be unfair to call this a 'gay' novel: as Iris Murdoch blurbs, it's really a novel about love. And though of course infused with sadness and even tragedy, the book is also very, very funny in parts.

Like the Wain novel, it's about pages, but again, not a page too long. It's a beautiful book and not to be missed.


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What about you? What were your favourite Valancourt releases this year? We'd love to hear from you! Today marks Edgar Allan Poe's th birthday, so we thought we'd celebrate by sharing some interesting stuff from the Valancourt Archives.

Hardback Editions

In order to write the book, Sinclair followed in Poe's footsteps from Richmond to Charlottesville, Philadelphia, New York, and Baltimore, and documented his research in two volumes of journals, which he sent to us. A note in the journals indicates that the bowsprit points to where Poe was found dying. Fayette Street, Baltimore Poe was originally buried without a headstone; this stone marks the spot of his original grave.

Andrew Sinclair at Poe's tomb. Main Street, Richmond, outside the Poe Museum. Fort Moultrie, where Poe was stationed from Nov. In the late s, when Sinclair visited, this neighborhood was particularly bad.

Paperback Editions

When we visited last year, it hadn't improved much. Hope you enjoyed these photos -- all of them come into play in Sinclair's book, which we hope you'll check out. The book, which won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize and the World Fantasy Award and was adapted for a Christopher Nolan film, has never been out of print in paperback, but for some reason the United States was the only place on earth where you couldn't get it as an e-book.

So we fixed that. Whether you've seen the film version or not, you really should check out the novel. It's brilliantly constructed — like the stage illusions its plot deals with — and a very compelling read. As fans of Victorian Gothic works by writers like Wilkie Collins, Bram Stoker, and Richard Marsh, we also enjoyed the book's structure, with multiple narrators and parts of the story told through diaries, etc.

The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck

And we're pleased to welcome a number of new Valancourt authors! We're extremely excited about Iain Sinclair's highly acclaimed White Chappell, Scarlet Tracings , which weaves two plotlines, one involving shady book dealers in modern-day London and one involving the Jack the Ripper slayings of It's a terrific book, written in a unique, highly poetic prose style, and I found it a most enjoyable and rewarding read.

Russell Hoban is probably best known for his children's books, but his novel Riddley Walker is regarded in many circles as a masterpiece, and his other novels—which are often unclassifiable, containing elements of humor, science fiction, fantasy, and even horror—have a large and well-deserved cult following. We're very pleased to report that we'll be reissuing three of his very best— The Lion of Boaz-Jachin and Jachin-Boaz , Kleinzeit and Pilgermann We'll post more about all these later on, but for now, some vintage covers: Here at Valancourt, we publish a lot of good books—and even quite a few great ones —but only a handful are so beautifully done, so compelling, so perfect that they're actually impossible to put down.

Philip Ridley's In the Eyes of Mr Fury is one such novel, and we're very excited to have it as forthcoming. It's a bibliographic oddity: it never had a hardcover edition but went straight into paperback from Penguin as part of their short-lived Penguin Originals series. Also odd is the cover, which doesn't have the title or author's name. The book never appeared at all in the US, so we're thrilled to make it available here for the first time, as well as making it available again in the UK and worldwide.

We don't want to run the risk of spoiling anything for you, so we won't say more about this one here — just trust us : do not under any circumstances miss it!

From the oldie-but-goodie category is Nightmares and Geezenstacks by Fredric Brown, who was great at writing everything from crime novels to sci-fi to horror to This collection was first published as a now-scarce paperback original in and reprinted in the late s. Both editions are hard to find and because of the pulp-quality materials used, most copies are falling to bits.

The paperback contains 47 stories but is only about pages long: most of the stories are only pages long, but though very short, they pack a very powerful punch. Few if any writers are better at the "short short story" than Brown was. We're pleased to add his Foreign Affairs to our list: it's a book that showcases perfectly why the Sunday Times called Fleetwood "the master of modern horror" and illustrates what the Scotsman meant when they wrote "He reaches down and stirs up with venomous delight the nameless, faceless things swimming far below the levels of consciousness.

Century

Look for more info on all these titles and authors coming soon, and, as always, we have dozens more titles under consideration or in the works, so expect more announcements soon! This is our favorite time of the year, and probably the favorite of many of you as well.