A gem - one of those novels that collapse the distance between then and now, and not in a way that reflects well on us as a species.
-- Time Out, November 14, 2007
An understated literary classic
-- Guardian October 11 2007
From the opening scene it grabs you. Kersh is bound to win a new generation of fans. -- Jewish Chronicle November 2, 2007
From the Publisher
London Books is delighted to announce the re-issue of Gerald Kersh's vintage Soho, low-life masterpiece Night And The City, first published in 1938.
With a backdrop of the build-up to the Coronation celebrations of 1936, Harry Fabian swaggers around the bars, clubs and backstreets of Soho and the West End hustling for a pound note and invariably spending a fiver. He is a wide boy, a spiv and a ponce but most of all a fantasist heavily influenced by Hollywood films. Reality in the shape of exploited employees and prostitutes, family members and the forces of the law gradually impinges on the fantasy. With a colourful supporting cast of night-club owners, hostesses, wrestlers, pimps and barrow-boys Gerald Kersh has created an authentic and seductive landscape of the time and the place.
On first release Night And The City prompted much controversy being an early exposure of the seedier side of London that flourished behind the public face of the changing of the guards, the chiming of Big Ben and famous West End shows. Nevertheless, the novel endured and was filmed twice: firstly with Richard Widmark in 1950 and generally considered a film noir classic, and later starring Robert de Niro in 1992.
This edition includes a substantial introduction by contemporary author John King whose work includes The Football Factory trilogy, Human Punk, White Trash and The Prison House.
Gerald Kersh is the author of 19 novels and hundreds of short stories and articles. He died in the USA in 1968.
London Books is a new publisher formed by authors John King and Martin Knight. The company aims to bring old and new fiction together in a tradition that is original in its subject matter, style and social concerns. London Books believe that the marginalised fiction of the past can be as relevant and exciting today as when it was first published.