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Henry Kuttner's picture

Henry Kuttner


USA (1914 - 1958)
Husband of C L Moore

aka Keith Hammond, Lawrence O'Donnell, Lewis Padgett

Henry Kuttner was alone and in collaboration with his wife, the great science fiction and fantasy writer C.L. Moore, one of the four or five most important writers of the 1940's, the writer whose work went furthest in its sociological and psychological insight, to making science fiction a human as well as technological literature. He was an important influence upon every contemporary and every science fiction writer who succeeded him. In the early 1940's and under many pseudonyms, Kuttner and Moore published very widely through the range of the science fiction and fantasy pulp markets.

Their fantasy novels, all of them for the lower grade markets like Future, Thrilling Wonder, Planet Stories, are forgotten now; their science fiction novels, Fury and Mutant are however well regarded. There is no question but that Kuttner's talent lay primarily in the shorter form; Mutant is an amalgamation of five novelettes and Fury, his only true science fiction novel, is considered as secondary material. Three are, however, 40 or 50 shorter works which are among the most significant achievements in the field and they remain consistently in print. The critic James Blish, quoting a passage from Mutant about the telepathic perception of the little blank, silvery minds of goldfish, noted that writing of this quality was not only rare in science fiction but rare throughout literature; "The Kuttners learned a few thing writing for the pulp magazines, however, that one doesn't learn reading Henry James."

In the early 1950's, Kuttner and Moore, both citing weariness with writing, even creative exhaustion, turned away from science fiction; both obtained undergraduate degrees in psychology from the University of Southern California and Henry Kuttner, enrolled in an MA program, planned to be a clinical psychologist. A few science fiction short stories and novelettes appeared (Humpty Dumpty, finished the Baldy series, in 1953.) Those stories -- Home There Is No Returning, Home Is the Hunter, Two-Handed Engine and Rite of Passage -- were at the highest level of Kuttner's work. He also published three mystery novels with Harper & Row (of which only the first is certainly his; the other two, apparently, were farmed out by Kuttner to other writers when he found himself incapable of finishing them).

Henry Kuttner died suddenly in his sleep, probably from a stroke, in February 1958; Catherine Moore remarried a physician and survived him by almost three decades but she never published again. She remained in touch with the science fiction community, however, and was Guest of Honor at the World Convention in Denver in 198l. She died of complications of Alzheimer's Disease in 1987.
 
Novels
The Creature from Beyond InfinityEarth's Last CitadelThe Dark WorldValley of the Flame
FuryThe Mask of CirceThe Time AxisMan Drowning
MutantThe Well of the WorldsDestination: InfinityDr. Cyclops
Elak of AtlantisPrince Raynor
 
Omnibus
Henry Kuttner SF Gateway Omnibus
 
Collections
The Proud RobotRobots Have No TailsAhead of TimeNo Boundaries
Bypass to OthernessReturn to OthernessThe Best of KuttnerThe Best of Kuttner 2
The Best of Henry KuttnerClash by Night: And Other StoriesChessboard Planet and Other StoriesThe Startling Worlds of Henry Kuttner
Kuttner Times ThreeSecret of the Earth Star: And OthersMountain MagicMimzy and Other Stories
Thunder Jim Wade: The Complete SeriesDon't Look Now and Two OthersDetour to OthernessThe Vampire Megapack:  27 Modern and Classic Vampire Stories
 
Novellas
Beggars in VelvetBaldyEndowment Policy
 
Non fiction
 
Anthologies containing stories by Henry Kuttner
The Other Worlds (1941)
Timeless Stories for Today and Tomorrow (1952)
Science-Fiction Carnival (1953)
Best SF (1955)
Circus of Dr. Lao and Other Improbable Stories (1956)
A Treasury of Great Science Fiction, Volume 1 (1959)
A Treasury of Great Science Fiction, Volume 2 (1959)
The Unknown (1963)
The Pseudo-People (1965)
Best SF 6 (1966)
Beyond the Curtain of Dark (1966)
Robert Silverberg's Worlds of Wonder: Exploring the Craft of Science Fiction (1969)
Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos Volume 1 (1969)
The Unspeakable People (1969)
The 5th Fontana Book of Great Horror Stories (1970)
The Hollywood Nightmare (1970)
Savage Heroes: Tales of Magical Fantasy (1975)
Christopher Lee's 'X' Certificate (1975)
Creatures from Beyond (1975)
Planets of Wonder (1976)
Realms of Wizardry (1976)
Weird Legacies (1977)
The Great SF Stories One: 1939 (1979)
Les Meilleurs Recits de Weird Tales Tome 3 (1938-1942) (1979)
The Great SF Stories 3: 1941 (1980)
A Century of Science Fiction 1950-1959 (1981)
A Treasury of Modern Fantasy (1981)
The Great SF Stories 8: 1946 (1982)
The Great SF Stories 7: 1945 (1982)
The Great SF Stories 10: 1948 (1983)
The Gruesome Book (1983)
Science-fiction Classics: The Stories That Morphed Into Movies (1986)
Robots (1989)
The Azathoth Cycle (1995)
The Vampire Omnibus (1995)
The Best of Weird Tales (1995)
Virtuous Vampires (1996)
UFOs: The Greatest Stories (1997)
The Mammoth Book of Fantasy All-Time Greats (1998)
     aka The Fantasy Hall of Fame
The Mammoth Book of Twentieth-Century Ghost Stories (1998)
Tales of The Cthulhu Mythos (1999)
Timeless Stories for Today and TomorrowScience-Fiction CarnivalBest SFCircus of Dr. Lao and Other Improbable Stories
A Treasury of Great Science Fiction, Volume 1A Treasury of Great Science Fiction, Volume 2The UnknownThe Pseudo-People
Beyond the Curtain of DarkRobert Silverberg's Worlds of Wonder: Exploring the Craft of Science FictionTales of the Cthulhu Mythos Volume 1The Unspeakable People
The 5th Fontana Book of Great Horror StoriesThe Hollywood NightmareSavage Heroes: Tales of Magical FantasyChristopher Lee's 'X' Certificate
Creatures from BeyondPlanets of WonderRealms of WizardryWeird Legacies
The Great SF Stories One: 1939The Great SF Stories 3: 1941A Century of Science Fiction 1950-1959A Treasury of Modern Fantasy
The Great SF Stories 8: 1946The Great SF Stories 7: 1945The Great SF Stories 10: 1948The Gruesome Book
Science-fiction Classics: The Stories That Morphed Into MoviesRobotsThe Azathoth CycleThe Vampire Omnibus
The Best of Weird TalesUFOs: The Greatest StoriesThe Mammoth Book of Fantasy All-Time GreatsThe Mammoth Book of Twentieth-Century Ghost Stories
Tales of The Cthulhu Mythos
 
Short stories
The Graveyard Rats (1936)
The Black Kiss (1937) (with Robert Bloch)
I, the Vampire (1937)
Quest of the Starstone (1937) (with C L Moore)
The Salem Horror (1937)
We Are the Dead (1937)
The Shadow on the Screen (1938)
The Spawn of Dagon (1938)
Hydra (1939)
The Misguided Halo (1939)
Beauty and the Beast (1940)
Dr. Cyclops [short story] (1940)
Threshold (1940)
A Gnome There Was (1941)
Deadlock (1942)
Masquerade (1942)
Piggy Bank (1942)
We Guard the Black Planet! (1942)
Clash by Night (1943) (as by Lawrence O'Donnell)
Gallegher Plus (1943)
Ghost (1943)
Shock (1943)
Time Locker (1943)
The World is Mine (1943)
The Children's Hour (1944) (with C L Moore)
Housing Problem (1944)
Camouflage (1945)
What You Need (1945)
Absalom (1946) (with C L Moore)
Call Him Demon (1946) (as by Keith Hammond) (with C L Moore)
Juke-Box (1946)
This is the House (1946)
Vintage Season (1946) (as by Lawrence O'Donnell)
Don't Look Now (1948)
Ex Machina (1948)
Pile of Trouble (1948)
See You Later (1949)
The Sky is Falling (1950)
Android (1951)
The Ego Machine (1951)
Those Among Us (1951)
By These Presents (1952)
De Profundis (1953)
Home is the Hunter (1953)
Or Else (1953)
Year Day (1953)
Two-Handed Engine (1955) (with C L Moore)
The Grab Bag (1991) (with Robert Bloch)


Books about Henry Kuttner
 

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