Stephen Gallagher's picture

Stephen Gallagher

UK flag (b.1954)

aka Stephen Couper, John Lydecker

Beginning his TV career with the BBC's DOCTOR WHO, Stephen Gallagher went on to establish himself as a writer and director of high-end miniseries and primetime episodic television. In his native England he's adapted and created hour-long and feature-length thrillers and crime dramas. In the US he was lead writer on NBC's CRUSOE, creator of CBS Television's ELEVENTH HOUR, and Co-Executive Producer on ABC's THE FORGOTTEN. His fourteen novels include DOWN RIVER, RAIN, VALLEY OF LIGHTS, and NIGHTMARE, WITH ANGEL. He's the creator of Sebastian Becker, Special Investigator to the Lord Chancellor's Visitor in Lunacy, in a series of novels beginning with THE KINGDOM OF BONES and THE BEDLAM DETECTIVE, continuing in THE AUTHENTIC WILLIAM JAMES. 

Described by The Independent as "the finest British writer of bestselling popular fiction since le Carré ... Gallagher, like le Carré, is a novelist whose themes seem to reflect something of the essence of our times, and a novelist whose skill lies in embedding those themes in accessible plots." According to Arena magazine, "Gallagher has quietly become Britain's finest popular novelist, working a dark seam between horror and the psychological thriller.The Daily Telegraph wrote, "Since Valley of Lights, he has been refining his own brand of psycho-thriller, with a discomforting knack of charting mental disintegration and a razor-sharp sense of place." Charles de Lint wrote in Mystery Scene magazine, "Gallagher is a master of abnormal psychology and he just gets better and better." Also in Mystery Scene David Mathew added, "never a writer to rest on his laurels, he has written good hard thrillers, some horror genre work (such as Valley of Lights), and a novel (Oktober) that might even qualify as a vague distortion of contemporary world fantasy... in places. You might go as far as to employ that overused phrase sui generis. He is, at any rate, one of the best writers of his generation."

Winner of British Fantasy and International Horror Guild awards.


Genres: Historical Mystery, Horror, Science Fiction
   Dying of Paradise (1978) (as by Stephen Couper)
     aka The Last Rose of Summer
   Saturn 3 (1980)
   Silver Dream Racer (1980) (as by John Lydecker)
   Chimera (1982)
   The Ice Belt (1983) (as by Stephen Couper)
   Follower (1984)
   Valley of Lights (1987)
   Oktober (1988)
   Down River (1989)
   Rain (1990)
   The Boat House (1991)
   Nightmare, With Angel (1992)
   Red, Red Robin (1995)
   White Bizango (2002)
   The Spirit Box (2005)
   The Painted Bride (2006)
   The Babylon Run (2022)
Novellas and Short Stories
   In Gethsemane (2013)
   Melody James (2018)
   The Governess (2020)
   Blackwood (2023)
Series contributed to
Doctor Who : Second Doctor
   The War Games (1979) (with Malcolm Hulke (as by John Lydecker) )
Doctor Who : Fourth Doctor
   Warriors' Gate (1982) (as by John Lydecker)
Doctor Who : Fifth Doctor
   Terminus (1983) (as by John Lydecker)
Non fiction show
Stephen Gallagher recommends
The Framed Women of Ardemore House (2024)
(Netherleigh Mystery)
Brandy Schillace
"A classic murder mystery, an amateur sleuth like no other; Josephine Jones will change the way you look at the world."
I Know Who You Were (2023)
Nick Curran
"Throws out a great hook and then twists and turns its way to a heartstopping climax."
Felicity Carrol and the Perilous Pursuit (2019)
(Felicity Carrol Mystery, book 1)
Patricia Marcantonio
"A smart and likeable heroine, and a story that flies along at a cracking pace."

More recommendations 

Anthologies containing stories by Stephen Gallagher
Something Peculiar (2023)
(Great British Horror, book 8)
edited by
Steve J Shaw
Gaslight Ghouls (2022)
Uneasy Tales of Sherlock Holmes, Monsters and Madmen
edited by
JR Campbell and Charles Prepolec
Black Cat Weekly #8 (2021)
(Black Cat Weekly, book 8)

More anthologies 

Bram Stoker Best Novellette nominee (1992) : Magpie
British Fantasy Society Best Novel nominee (1995) : Red, Red Robin

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