Thursday, 13 December 2018


Take a dip into a world where reality trembles and sanity is all in the mind — a world created by the brilliant author of The Day of the Triffids and The Kraken Wakes. 
There’s a monkey with a unique artistic talent. A man living his life over again. A tube in the rush hour that was so crowded it seemed like hell; in fact it was hell...
Jizzle will grip you from cover to cover with its unique blend of horror and fantasy — a combination which can never fail.

I had a copy of Jizzle here a while back but didn't like the cover art so I couldn't bring myself to read it (yes, I really am that picky).  This newly acquired copy with it's apocalyptic artwork was a different animal and I couldn't resist it.

This anthology is a collection of short stories written pre-1954 and includes stories previously printed in 'Argosy', 'Women's Journal' and 'Everybody's'.  They are, on the whole, pretty whimsical and there's a lightness here that is missing in many of his more famous works.  A sense of fun that, whilst not being something that I felt was lacking in those novels, was a nice thing to find here.

Love and relationships are at the core of many of these tales, often of course with a twist, such as the title story of a malicious monkey or the dream man of 'Perforce to Dream', the flea circus setting of 'Esmerelda' or the drunken fortune hunting of 'How Do I Do?'

Amongst the tales of the heart we do have some weirdness in the form of a rich old man getting to live his life again in 'Technical Slip' and the train ride to Hell in 'Confidence Trick, a ghost story ('Reservation Deferred'), science fiction ('Una') and even a post-apocalypse tale ('The Wheel'). Scattered throughout there are a variety of less satisfying stories that were, at best, a diverting piece of frippery but offered little more than that.

I am though at the final reckoning quite pleased to have found an aesthetically pleasing edition of what transpired to be a fairy enjoyable read that displayed a more playful side of an author I like very much indeed.


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