Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Shameless Hustling: PS Publshing in the UK has brought out my novel Cage of Night in a limited edition hardcover. The price is forty dollars but I suspect that you can get it several dollars cheaper on Amazon very soon. I also imagine it'll go to collectors instead of the general public. I've run some quotes below. Duane Swierczynski was nice enough (after I paid him several hundred dollars and agreed to wash his car) to give me an extended quote that was almost a review. The one thing we suffered in the recent flood was the crash of our computers. I lost Duane's quote along with several others, my mom's among them.

One of my favorite writers, UK novelist and screenwriter Stephen Gallagher, was kind enough to write the introduction to this edition of Cage. I'm quoting three paragraphs here because they state exactly (and eloquently) the type of book I like to read..

"There’s a type of writing which I grew up loving, which made me want to be a writer myself, and which for a while I thought was gone forever. I'm talking about spare, intelligent commercial fiction. Pan paperbacks, crime novels, spy fiction, postwar British thrillers... writers from Gavin Lyall to Graham Greene, from John Le CarrĂ© to John D MacDonald. Well-paced novels that were as long as they needed to be and not a page longer, from authors with a grip on the English language as precise as a sculptor's on his chisel. Like a sculptor they wasted no strokes, and like a sculptor they had little margin for error.

"Their work is light, racy, and full of substance. By “light”, I don't mean frivolous. I mean with a deceptive lightness of touch, an easy sense of direct connection, a sense that the writer’s first job is always to engage the reader. Rather like the effortless people-person who spots you arriving at a party, makes you feel instantly welcome, and starts introducing you around. You know the type. Born diplomats. Even if you don't know them well, they seem to know you. It's a special thrill when they remember your name.

"Ah, those books! Well-crafted popular fiction. They came out of a tradition going all the way back to Dickens and beyond. It was storytelling, pure if not always simple. The best writers understood that storytelling wasn't some lower form of literature. It was the ticket to ride, allowing any and all of the freight of literature to be checked in to ride along with it."

"A terrific novel." - Alan Guthrie

"Twenty-one-year-old Nick Morrow returns to his
> hometown after two years in the Army and falls in
> love with Cindy Brasher, Homecoming Queen and town
> goddess to a long line of jealous men. A string of robberies
> put Nick at odds with his obsessive love for Cindy.
> One by one Nick's rivals are implicated in horrific
> crimes. Nick wonders how much Cindy knows, and why
> shewants him, like her past boyfriends, to visit the
> old well in the woods...
> "The book is full of Gorman's characteristic virtues
> as a writer: sympathy, humour, commitment to the
> craft of storytelling, and a headlong narrative drive. A
> real writer is at work here and there aren't many of
> those to go around." >

"Cornell Woolrich would have enjoyed Cage Of
> Night."
"A different type of noir horror tale can be found
> in Gorman's Cage of Night, which manages to be
> genuinely chilling even though the horror is
> essentially an illusion. In this story there is no
> detective or urban setting, only a young man named
> Nick Morrow and a very memorable femme fatale named
> Cindy Brasher. Nick is rather naively in love with
> Cindy, who believes that an old well in the forest
> contains a trapped alien visitor. Nick is convinced
> that Cindy just needs to be rescued, even while the
> murders around Cindy keep piling up. It's unclear
> whether or not there really is an alien outside of
> Cindy's mind, but the demonic combination of the
> well and her charms is still fatal."
> "The small-town setting is reminiscent of Jim
> Thompson, but many of Thompson's narrators are
> hitmen, > sociopaths or con-artists, viewing the small-town
> world through their own twisted mindset. Nick Morrow
> is basically a boy-scout, and the world he lives in
> is one of keg parties and high school crushes, which
> makes Cindy's underlying eeriness even creepier by
> contrast. Nick's innocent and likable personality is
> only pitiable in the world of noir, and in the end
> he is as morally compromised and trapped as any
> anti-hero."
> Fiction:
> "Ed Gorman has penned a riveting thriller...He
> presents his story in matter-of-fact prose that
> lends a harrowing element to the proceedings. There are no
> flashes of fantasy or whimsy here, only an
> ever-darkening spiral that draws Spence into a place
> where he stands to lose everything.
> "Aliens or Shared Psychotic Disorder? In the end it
> doesn't matter because people are still dying, but
> the question and how Gorman's characters have to deal
> with it make for fascinating reading."


Martin Edwards said...

Sounds great, and I'm fascinated by the Cornell Woolrich comparison. He's one of my favourite American writers.

Brendan DuBois said...

Ed, just read this a few months ago (you were gracious to sell me an autographed copy) and what struck me is how, well, simple's not quite the right word.. but just plain good ol' storytelling, but jeezum, creepy enough in the undercurrents to make you keep on wondering, what the hell is going on here? And even after finishing it... *still* wondering what the hell was going on here... and feeling creepier still.

A great piece of work.

Anonymous said...

Congrats on seeing a rerelease of CAGE, Ed. It's one of my fave novels from your canon. Eerie, intriguing, and steeped in the kind of mystery that sears into a reader. Kudos!

best, Tom Pic