Barry N. Malzberg

in New York City, NY, The United States
July 24, 1939


He has also published as:
Mike Barry (thriller/suspense)
K.M. O'Donnell (science fiction/fantasy)
Mel Johnson (adult)
Howard Lee (martial arts/TV tie-ins)
Lee W. Mason (adult)
Claudine Dumas (adult)
Francine di Natale (adult)
Gerrold Watkins (adult)
Eliot B. Reston

Barry Malzberg lives with his wife and daughter in Manhattan and is worried about having recently reached the ominous age of seventy….

Mr. Malzberg’s first hardcover novels, Oracle of the Thousand Hands and Screen are seriously-intentioned works which, according to the author, were neither fun to write nor fun in retrospect. Major influences on his work in no particular order are Norman Mailer, J.D. Salinger, Saul Bellow, James Agee, Vladimir Nabokov, Fyodor Dostoyevsky and Nikolai Gogol.


Average rating: 3.87 · 19,847 ratings · 1,192 reviews · 414 distinct worksSimilar authors
Beyond Apollo

3.66 avg rating — 288 ratings — published 1972 — 18 editions
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The Best Time Travel Storie...

3.81 avg rating — 132 ratings — published 2003 — 2 editions
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Herovit's World

3.62 avg rating — 92 ratings — published 1973 — 14 editions
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3.50 avg rating — 141 ratings — published 1975 — 10 editions
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Phase IV

3.33 avg rating — 63 ratings — published 1973 — 4 editions
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The Falling Astronauts

3.98 avg rating — 43 ratings — published 1971 — 8 editions
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Guernica Night

3.04 avg rating — 50 ratings — published 1974 — 6 editions
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Breakfast in the Ruins: Sci...

really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 35 ratings — published 2007 — 2 editions
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The Men Inside

3.22 avg rating — 45 ratings — published 1973 — 8 editions
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The Remaking of Sigmund Freud

3.44 avg rating — 36 ratings — published 1985 — 8 editions
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More books by Barry N. Malzberg…
Night Raider Bay Prowler Boston Avenger Desert Stalker Havana Hit Chicago Slaughter Peruvian Nightmare
(14 books)
3.19 avg rating — 103 ratings

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“He began as a minor imitator of Fitzgerald, wrote a novel in the late twenties which won a prize, became dissatisfied with his work, stopped writing for a period of years. When he came back it was to BLACK MASK and the other detective magazines with a curious and terrible fiction which had never been seen before in the genre markets; Hart Crane and certainly Hemingway were writing of people on the edge of their emotions and their possibility but the genre mystery markets were filled with characters whose pain was circumstantial, whose resolution was through action; Woolrich's gallery was of those so damaged that their lives could only be seen as vast anticlimax to central and terrible events which had occurred long before the incidents of the story. Hammett and his great disciple, Chandler, had verged toward this more than a little, there is no minimizing the depth of their contribution to the mystery and to literature but Hammett and Chandler were still working within the devices of their category: detectives confronted problems and solved (or more commonly failed to solve) them, evil was generalized but had at least specific manifestations: Woolrich went far out on the edge. His characters killed, were killed, witnessed murder, attempted to solve it but the events were peripheral to the central circumstances. What I am trying to say, perhaps, is that Hammett and Chandler wrote of death but the novels and short stories of Woolrich *were* death. In all of its delicacy and grace, its fragile beauty as well as its finality.

Most of his plots made no objective sense. Woolrich was writing at the cutting edge of his time. Twenty years later his vision would attract a Truffaut whose own influences had been the philosophy of Sartre, the French nouvelle vague, the central conception that nothing really mattered. At all. But the suffering. Ah, that mattered; that mattered quite a bit.”
Barry N. Malzberg, The Fantastic Stories of Cornell Woolrich

“Inevitably, his vision verged toward the fantastic; he published a scattering of stories - most included in this volume - which appeared to conform to that genre at least to the degree that the fuller part of his vision could be seen as "mysteries." For Woolrich it all was fantastic; the clock in the tower, hand in the glove, out of control vehicle, errant gunshot which destroyed; whether destructive coincidence was masked in the "naturalistic" or the "incredible" was all pretty much the same to him. RENDEZVOUS IN BLACK, THE BRIDE WORE BLACK, NIGHTMARE are all great swollen dreams, turgid constructions of the night, obsession and grotesque outcome; to turn from these to the "fantastic" was not to turn at all. The work, as is usually the case with a major writer was perfectly formed, perfectly consistent, the vision leached into every area and pulled the book together. "Jane Brown's Body" is a suspense story. THE BRIDE WORE BLACK is science fiction. PHANTOM LADY is a gothic. RENDEZVOUS IN BLACK was a bildungsroman. It does not matter.”
Barry N. Malzberg, The Fantastic Stories of Cornell Woolrich


Which Classic SF/F Novel do You want to Discuss with the Group in October?

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