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Henry Kuttner's picture

Henry Kuttner

USA flag (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.

The Proud Robot (1952)
Robots Have No Tails (1952)
Ahead of Time (1953)
No Boundaries (1955) (with C L Moore)
Bypass to Otherness (1961)
Return to Otherness (1962)
The Best of Kuttner (1965)
The Best of Kuttner 2 (1966)
The Best of Henry Kuttner (1975)
Clash by Night (1980)
Chessboard Planet and Other Stories (1984) (with C L Moore)
The Startling Worlds of Henry Kuttner (1986)
Kuttner Times Three (1988)
Secret of the Earth Star (1991)
Mountain Magic (2004) (with David Drake, Eric Flint and Ryk E Spoor)
Mimzy and Other Stories (2007)
Thunder Jim Wade (2008)
Don't Look Now and Two Others (2009)
Detour to Otherness (2010) (with C L Moore)
The Vampire Megapack (2012) (with John David Anderson, Jason Andrew, Zach Bartlett, E F Benson, John Gregory Betancourt, Luigi Capuana, Ray Cluley, Michael R Collings, Peter Darbyshire, Théophile Gautier, Franz Hartmann, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Michael McCarty and Terrie Leigh Relf, Darrell Schweitzer, Bram Stoker, Lawrence Watt-Evans and Chelsea Quinn Yarbro)
The Sixth Science Fiction Megapack (2013) (with Forrest J Ackerman, Neal Asher, Ray Bradbury, Reginald Bretnor, Adam-Troy Castro, Arthur C Clarke, John Cory, Samuel R Delany, Philip K Dick, A.A. Jackson IV, Jr., C M Kornbluth, Nancy Kress, Jay Lake, Frank Belknap Long, Alan E Nourse, Jerry Oltion, Pamela Sargent, Jerry Sohl, Mary A. Turzillo, Mary A Turzillo, Howard Waldrop, Harry Warner, Lawrence Watt-Evans, Ralph Williams, Murray F. Yaco and George Zebrowski)
The Weird Fiction Megapack: 25 Stories from Weird Tales (2014) (with John Gregory Betancourt, Zealia Bishop, Paul Compton, Mary Elizabeth Counselman, Nictzin Dyalhis, Paul Ernst, Robert E Howard, Malcolm Jameson, Jr., Ronal Kayser, Julius Long, H P Lovecraft, Bassett Morgan, Earl Peirce, G.G. Pendarves, E Hoffmann Price, Dorothy Quick, D.W. Rimel, Darrell Schweitzer, Clark Ashton Smith, Pearl Norton Swet, Steve Rasnic Tem, Howard Wandrei, Manly Wade Wellman and Tennessee Williams)
The Michael Gray Mysteries (2015) (with Catherine L Moore)
Non fiction
Anthologies containing stories by Henry Kuttner
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)
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)

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