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Night of the Crabs (Crabs Series) [Paperback]

Guy N. Smith
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: New English Library Ltd; 1st Edition edition (1 Sep 1980)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0450029425
  • ISBN-13: 978-0450029424
  • Product Dimensions: 17.4 x 10.8 x 1.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 319,258 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I had my first story published in a local newspaper at the age of 12, followed by 55 more before I was 17. It was a good start to a writing career and I owe much of it to my mother (historical novelist E.M. Weale) who gave me every encouragement. My father, though, was insistent that I followed family tradition and went into banking.

Hence it was twenty years later before I became a full-time author and I had some catching up to do. The 1970's were a boom time for pulp fiction and I made my debut with 'Werewolf by Moonlight' (NEL 1974). It was 'Night of the Crabs', though, which really established me as a writer, virtually overnight in that memorable record, hot summer of 1976. This title was the 'No.1 beach read'. It saw numerous reprints, spawned 5 sequels along with several short stories, as well as a movie.

'Night of the Crabs' enabled me to go full-time. At the time with my wife, Jean, and our four children we were living a reasonably conventional life in Tamworth, Staffordshire. It was time to move on though, and in 1977 we moved to our present home in a remote part of the Shropshire/Welsh border hills.

I was no stranger to country life though, and the further away we were from town and traffic the better. For many years I had been writing for the 'Shooting Times' and several other sporting publications. Then in 1999 I accepted the post of Gun Editor of 'The Countryman's Weekly'. This involved 4-5 articles per week and I relished the challenge.

By this time pulp fiction was virtually out of fashion so diversification suited me, yet my readership has remained faithful to me and technology has made it all possible again with e-books. Thus my backlist is steadily returning to electronic print along with some new books. It is an exciting time.

Product Description

Synopsis

After the mysterious disappearance of a couple holidaying on the Welsh coast, an uncle decides to investigate and discovers the claw marks of gigantic crabs on the beach. This is the beginning of the invasion of the crabs, mutated monsters with a taste for human flesh. Guy Smith is the author of over 80 books including "The Sucking Pit" and "The Slime Beast". --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ripping Nostalgic Fun! 9 Jun 2011
Format:Paperback
I was a teenager in the 1980s and have fond memories of paperback books like this on supermarket shelves. As a child I was of course fascinated by the covers of the books. Guy N Smith sits beside the likes of James Herbert and Stephen King as one of the familiar names that appeared on the covers of so many of those horror novels on the shelves. I spent my pocket money on one of Smith's crab novels 'Killer Crabs' when I was just a nipper. But besides getting my uncle to read me the first chapter, it was a few years later when in high school that I eventually got round to reading that book properly.

With all that nostalgia and feeling like reading a bit of horror again (a genre I'd been neglecting for a few years reading wise), I decided that Night Of The Crabs by Guy N Smith would be the historic first book to be both downloaded and read on my shiny new Kindle. So how does it hold up? Quite well. Of course it's a trashy 'holiday read' and a piece of pulp hokum and you either enjoy it for that or you don't. But it certainly managed to hold my attention (I like a variety of styles and genres and as no snob can quite happily read something like this alongside more serious horrors or literary works like Orwell, Austen or Dostoevsky - variety is the spice of life!) and managed to be an enjoyable if undemanding read. Having memories of it's sequel 'Killer Crabs', this one was surprisingly low key. There is action and horror. The crabs do kill some people and there are a few confrontations with the army or memorable set pieces, but perhaps not quite as much as you'd expect.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pincers Of Death! 25 Jun 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Reading this short novel feels very much like uncovering a buried time capsule of the 1970's. As I go back in time, the story moves at a fine pace... But with a pipe smokers flavour! A quirky scientist goes to a Welsh beach town to look for his missing nephew. What he finds there is an army of man-eating giant crabs and a beautiful young heroine. As the story unfolds in its own unique way the red blooded Professor protects and undresses his new girlfriend while declaring how wretched the giant crabs are! At times I was reminded of Austin Powers while reading this novel. If this story is read with a grin on your face then it has succeeded. In today's world this style of writing does seem dated but like an old photograph it can still bring a smile to your face.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cliff Davenport: Crab Killer! 5 Jan 2011
Format:Paperback
This is a classic for so many reasons, even the writing! Which is odd as it is possibly one of the worst written books I have read (and I've read some stinkers). But in hindsight that is one of the reasons why it is so good. The cliches, stunted suspense, tacked on scenes that explain characters' whereabouts and tie things up as part of an obvious rushed re-drafting process, and the extremely British matter-of-factedness that runs throughout. It all adds up to something special.

The story is slight and uninteresting: Professor Cliff Davenport (awesome name) arrives at a Welsh holiday spot to investigate the untimely disappearance of his nephew and fiancee. There he meets the stunningly attractive and 25 year old Pat Benson (another genius name, sounds like an Eastenders character) whom he falls in love with, with the backdrop of a new species of giant, unstoppable, flesh-eating crustaceans laying waste to the unfeasibly hot Welsh coastline. Click-click-clickety-click.

I jest but it is a phenomenal book. I remember reading it as a pre-teen and lapping it up and I enjoyed it even more some 30 years later. Any book that is the catalyst for such genius as Gath Marenghi's Darkplace is itself genius. 5 more sequel/prequels came after and they managed to get slightly better, writing-wise, but could not replicate the pure awful cheese of this thin epic. At one point, while the army are being ripped to shreds by the sea devils, Cliff and Pat even enjoy a nice breakfast and a smoke before aiding. Truly wondrous.

I dare you to read it!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
By Chris Hall TOP 100 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback
First published back in 1976, 'Night Of The Crabs' was the novel that really launched Guy N. Smith as a writer iconic pulp horror writer. Spawning four subsequent sequels and one insightful prequel, the movie production company Amicus later even bought the film rights to the 'Crabs' idea in 1976.

The tale begins when Professor Cliff Davenport, marine biologist and an all round stand-up guy, travels to a small piece of land known as Shell Island on the Welsh coast, to investigate the strange disappearance of his nephew Ian Wright and Wright's fiancée Julie Coles. Alas, the love struck pair had their lives cut short during a romantic night-swimming escapade. A full scale search is put underway in an attempt to locate the missing pair, whilst Davenport begins his own investigations into their disappearance.

After being mistakenly arrested by the conveniently placed military, Davenport relays his suspicions to the leading figure and close personal friend of his - Sir Ronald Bradley of Whitehall. Davenport is subsequently released by the military and quickly meets up with Pat Benson, another guest at the hotel Davenport is currently lodging at. Benson informs Davenport of the mysterious markings left on the beach that she spotted during an early morning walk and together they begin a vigil on the surrounding beaches.

Not before long, Davenport and his Benson (who are now quickly becoming lovers) witness the savage death of the local deaf and dumb beachcomber known as Bartholomew, at the hands (or should I say claws) of gigantic crabs that have emerged from the waters of Shell Island.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars night of the crabs
excellent read full of edge seating reading going to download the other crab books as I am sure these will be a intresting read too
Published 4 months ago by elizabeth moitt
4.0 out of 5 stars A guilty pleasure
I read about this in Robin Ince's Bad Book Club and having enjoyed other works from the 'over-sized animal-based horror' genre, decided to give this a go. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Discerning Reader/Viewer
3.0 out of 5 stars Night of the Crabs
This book was a trip down memory lane!! It came out about the time when mutant creatures with a taste for human flesh were all the rage. Read more
Published 6 months ago by BlackDog661
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun/scary/gory and just a good read!
This book isn't amazing but is sure a good read. Once you start reading its hard to put down. I found this read rather addictive with its tounge and cheek horror and occasional... Read more
Published 16 months ago by Darthgreg
3.0 out of 5 stars It is what it is.
definately a bok of it's era and genre - light horror reading for a holiday.

Enjoy it for what it is and don't expect great literature
Published 18 months ago by simon robinson
4.0 out of 5 stars Deja Vue
I first bought this as a teenager and enjoyed it. So I thought I would buy it again to see if would feel the same. It's a simple story but readable.
Published 19 months ago by Steve H
4.0 out of 5 stars Clickety-clack classic!
The first of the "Crabs" series, I've always had a soft spot for this as it is set in my homeland! Read more
Published 20 months ago by dawn hayes
3.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful piece of pulp horror!
I was about 14 or 15 when I first came across this wonderful piece of pulp trash... at the time I devoured it and thought it was a great read that would also make a half-decent... Read more
Published 21 months ago by mark chapman
5.0 out of 5 stars Trashy 70's Horror Pulp Fiction At It's best
I must have first read Guy N Smith's Night of the Crabs when I was just 11 or 12 and I loved it. I must have read hundreds of the trashy horror pulp fiction novels during my... Read more
Published on 6 Nov 2011 by Traffic
5.0 out of 5 stars That's Entertainment ...
Let's put one thing to rights before we start, Guy N Smith's Night of the Crabs does not aim to change the face of literary fiction; nor does it intend to leave the reader... Read more
Published on 23 Jan 2011 by Dave Jeffery
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