Created by Henry Slesar
Pseudonyms include Clyde Mitchell, O.H. leslie, Ivar Jorgensen, E.K. Jarvis, Lawrence Chandler, Sley Harson,Gerald Vance, Jeff Heller, Wli Jerome
If the root of all neuroses is in childhood --so is the root of Terror. When Gail Gunnerson was six years old, a Thing came to her bedroom door. It was so horrifying a sight, so dreadful in its implications, that the slender threads of reality were snapped.
Celebrated crime writer Slesar's second last novel, The Thing at the Door (1974), was a weird blend of psychological thriller, gothic romance potboiler and P.I. novel. I mean, check out that cover -- they sure weren't going after the Mike Hammer crowd.
Suitably hunky investigator STEVE TYNER is hired to follow a beautiful but fragile young heiress, Gail Gunnerson, and determine her mental state. Her twenty-fifth birthday is fast approaching, and she's due to inherit millions. So, Steve has to find out... is she nuts? Or does someone just want her to appear nuts?
There are twists, there are turns. There's a well-meaning best friend. A well-meaning psychiatrist. A well-meaning uncle (who just happens to be the trustee for the estate). Then again, there are also repressed childhood memories. A tragic past. A mother's suicide. Nightmares. Missing relatives. Things that (maybe) are going bump in the night. And then there's that "thing at the door."
Henry Slesar was a mainstay of the 50s-60s crime digests, writing everything from taut little domestic thrillers to even an occasional private eye yarn (see William Tyre), before becoming a writer for such television shows as Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The Twilight Zone and M*A*S*H, among others. Still, he's probably best known for his Emmy-winning stint writing for the CBS soap opera The Edge of Night, where he served as head writer from 1968 to 1984.
STRAIGHT FROM THE AUTHOR'S MOUTH
- "Oddly enough, this book started life as a screenplay. It was written for Warner Bros. a long time ago... They never produced a picture, but I produced a novel. On more than one occasion it almost became a movie again (at least for TV). It's been sold extensively abroad, but I've always had a strong desire to see it dramatized. Well, who knows?"
-- Henry Slesar, from an inscription on the title page, dated 4/25/1990.
Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.