Strange Wine

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Harlan Ellison's Deathbird Stories was selected by the American Library Association as one of the Best Books for Young Adults, 1975. School Library Journal said the same thing. This modern master of the macabre invites lovers of Poe, Kafka and Borges to a gourmet's sampling of the headiest wine since Montressor's Amontiillado. Strange Wine: the quaffing of deep drafts of imagination...unsettling visions by the man whom Pete Hamill called "the Dark Prince of American letters."

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1939 Paperback *** QUALITY EX LIBRARY COPY***IN VERY GOOD GENERAL CONDITION***MAY HAVE SOME LIBRARY STAMPS, MARKINGS ETC. DAILY PRIORITY DISPATCH FROM UK WAREHOUSE STOCK. ... *****PLEASE NOTE: This item is shipping from an authorized seller in Europe. In the event that a return is necessary, you will be able to return your item within the US. To learn more about our European sellers and policies see the BookQuest FAQ section***** Read more Show Less

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Strange Wine

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Overview

Harlan Ellison's Deathbird Stories was selected by the American Library Association as one of the Best Books for Young Adults, 1975. School Library Journal said the same thing. This modern master of the macabre invites lovers of Poe, Kafka and Borges to a gourmet's sampling of the headiest wine since Montressor's Amontiillado. Strange Wine: the quaffing of deep drafts of imagination...unsettling visions by the man whom Pete Hamill called "the Dark Prince of American letters."

Fifteen previously uncollected tales in which the Pied Piper of Hamelin is come again, this time to pipe the Apocalypse for humanity; the spirits of executed Nazi war criminals walk Manhattan streets; the damned soul of a Lizzie Borden-like murderess escapes from Hell; a horny young man is haunted by the ghost of his Yiddishe Momma; an amoral womanizer seeks his awful destiny among the derelicts and alligators living in the sewers beneath the city; gremlins write the fantasies of a gone-dry writer; the nephew of The Shadow wreaks terrible vengeance on the New York Literary Establishment; and the exquisite Dr. D'ArqueAngel injects her patients with immunizing doses of the distillate of death.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780743479899
  • Publisher: ibooks, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 10/1/2004
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 8.25 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Read an Excerpt

INTRODUCTION

Revealed at Last! What Killed the Dinosaurs! And You Don't Look so Terrific Yourself.

It's all about drinking strange wine.

It seems disjointed and jumps around like water on a griddle, but it all comes together, so be patient.

At 9:38 A.M. on July 15th, 1974, about eight minutes into Suncoast Digest, a variety show on WXLT-TV in Sarasota, Florida, anchorwoman Chris Chubbuck, 30, looked straight at the camera and said, "In keeping with Channel 40's policy of bringing you the latest in blood and guts in living color, you're going to see another first-an attempt at suicide."

Whereupon she pulled a gun out of a shopping bag and blew her brains out, on camera.

Paragraph 3, preceding, was taken verbatim from an article written by Daniel Schorr for Rolling Stone. I'd heard about the Chubbuck incident, of course, and I admit to filching Mr. Schorr's sixty concise words because they are concise, and why should I try to improve on precision? As the artist Mark Rothko once put it: "Silence is so accurate."

Further, Mr. Schorr perceived in the bizarre death of Chris Chubbuck exactly what I got out of it when I heard the news broadcast the day it happened. She was making a statement about television ... on television!

The art-imitating-life resemblance to Paddy Chayefsky's film Network should not escape us. I'm sure it wouldn't have escaped Chris Chubbuck's attention. Obvious cliché; onward.

I used to know Dan Blocker, who played Hoss Cartwright on Bonanza. He was a wise and a kind man, and there are tens of dozens of people I would much rather see dead than Dan. Onetime, around lunch-break at Paramount, when I was goofing off on writing a treatment for a Joe Levine film that never got made, and Dan was resting his ass from some dumb horsey number he'd been reshooting all morning, we sat on the steps of the weathered saloon that probably in no way resembled any saloon that had ever existed in Virginia City, Nevada, and we talked about reality versus fantasy. The reality of getting up at five in the morning to get to the studio in time for makeup call and the reality of how bloody much FICA tax they took out of our paychecks and the reality of one of his kids being down with something or other ... and the fantasy of not being Dan Blocker, but of being Hoss Cartwright.

And he told me a scary story. He laughed about it, but it was the laugh of butchers in a slaughterhouse who have to swing the mauls that brain the beeves; who then go home to wash the stink out of their hair from the spattering.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2003

    good storytelling

    This was the first I have read of Ellison. (For Star Trek fans, he wrote the "City on the Edge of Forever" episode!). I found the stories compelling, if a bit dated, pertaining to the sensibilities of the 1970's. As much fun as his stories are his introductions to each one, where he lays the specifics of his life out to the reader in a frank, scary, often hilarious way. Not for the weak of heart, and hard to categorize, check it out if you want a taste of a first class imagination at work.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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