Black Cat Weekly #35

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I mentioned to BCW's acquiring editor Michael Bracken that I was enjoying the mystery/science fiction crossover stories he had been selecting for BCW, many of them originals, and he confessed to challenging writers to come up with stories that mixed the two genres. I thought, Aha! So that’s where they have all been coming from! It’s a Good Thing in my opinion. And this issue we have another one—“For Blood,” by Eve Fisher, which works well as both science fiction and mystery. 

Another of our acquiring editors, Barb Goffman, was nominated for not one, but two Agatha Awards at the Malice Domestic mystery convention last weekend. It’s hard to win when you have two stories up at the same time in the same category, as she did. I kept my fingers crossed for a tie, so she’d have two Agatha Awards this year, but it wasn’t to be. Next year! The good news is, she affirmed her enthusiasm for editing for BCW, and this issue she has yet another great mystery story: “Death of a Bible Salesman,” by Sarah R. Shaber (who I suspect of watching Paper Moon in part for her inspiration. I have a fondness for stories about grifters and conmen.) And speaking of conmen, we have another rare tale by Christopher B. Booth featuring conman deluxe Mr. Amos Clackworthy. Plus mysteries by Hulbert Footner and Hal Charles (a solve-it-yourself puzzler). Plus a historical adventure by western author W.C. Tuttle.

On the science fiction front, we have Darrell Schweitzer’s 1979 interview with Fred Saberhagen. If you’re a fan of his Berserker series, there’s a lot here about it. Michael Swanwick returns to our pages with “The House of Dreams,” a fantasy tale selected by Cynthia Ward. Plus we have classics by Malcolm Jameson and Lester del Rey (both from the Golden Age of Astounding Science Fiction) plus a dark science fiction tale by Henry Kuttner from Weird Tales. This issue also has the final 3 episodes of Mel Gilden’s novel, The Case by Case Casebook of Emily Silverwood. Great Fun.
   Here’s the lineup:


  • Speaking with Fred Saberhagen, an Interview by Darrell Schweitzer [interview]

Mysteries / Suspense / Adventure:

  • For Blood, by Eve Fisher [Michael Bracken Presents short story]
  • Booked For Murder, by Hal Charles [solve-it-yourself mystery]
  • Death of a Bible Salesman, by Sarah R. Shaber [Barb Goffman Presents short story]
  • The Case of Luke Darrow, by Hulbert Footner [novel]
  • When Mr. Clackworthy Needed a Bracer, by Christopher B. Booth [novelette]
  • Cinders, by W.C. Tuttle [short story]

Science Fiction & Fantasy:

  • For Blood, by Eve Fisher [Michael Bracken Presents short story]
  • The House of Dreams, by Michael Swanwick [Cynthia Ward Presents short story]
  • Tricky Tonnage, by Malcolm Jameson [short story]
  • Raider of the Spaceways, by Henry Kuttner [novelette]
  • The Renegade, by Lester del Rey [short story]
  • The Case by Case Casebook of Emily Silverwood, by Mel Gilden (Part 4 of 4) [Serial Novel]