05 February, 2007

The Painted Bride

Stephen Gallagher's newest novel The Painted Bride has recently been published, and thanks to Amazon I have now added it to my bookshelves, ensuring that my collection of Gallagher novels is once again complete (for more on this see my Nightmare with Angel post).

As with all of Gallagher's writing, The Painted Bride is a compelling read. He's one of very few authors whose books I would describe as ‘unputdownable’. I started reading the book on the way home from work (unusually I happened to be catching the bus on the day it arrived in the mail), and I finished it at home later that evening. I never intended to get through it that quickly - it simply would not let me go.

The Painted Bride is not just a great read; it's also a beautifully presented book. It's a hardcover from Subterranean Press, limited to just 750 copies, all individually hand-numbered and signed by Gallagher, bound with textured cloth endpapers and wrapped in a suitably moody painted dustjacket by Edward Miller.

What's particularly significant for me about this book is that I've been waiting for it for nearly a decade. I used to be the customer orders manager for the Whitcoulls bookstore chain some years ago and I had access to a very useful electronic database called Bookfind which had rather thorough data on all published and upcoming books. Naturally I would regularly check up on forthcoming titles by my favourite authors. The Painted Bride would keep coming up under a search of Stephen Gallagher's works, with an ever further delayed release date.

To finally own a copy of this book after years of thwarted anticipation is the very definition of satisfaction for this fan of Gallagher's writing.

1 comment:

Caroline Callaghan said...

It's great to find another person who enjoys Stephen Gallagher's writing as much as I do! I don't have all his books like you, Ian, but I have quite a few.

I'm more of a short story reader than a reader of novels, and I love his short stories. I find it amazing that, until "Out of His Mind", there was no collection of his short stories available.

You'll be pleased to hear that there's another collection being planned - with 10,000 words of new material as well as previously published stories. How do I know? Well, I had the pleasure of interviewing him for an ezine a few months ago - and what a fascinating and inspiratiional character he is. You can read my interview at http://www.pantechnicon.net/interviews/gallagher.php