Saturday 9 April 2016

Random Paperbacks:
All Night Stand
by Thom Keyes

(Mayflower/Dell, 1967)

Ah, we haven’t had any beatniks on this blog for a while, have we? Yeah, THE BEAT SCENE! Mercurial, untamed, straight from the fridge, da… hang on a minute, a pop group? That doesn’t sound like the sort of endeavour any self-respecting beatniks would get involved in. What year was this thing published again? 1967!? Oh my.

I don’t suppose young Thom Keyes had any aspirations to become the next Hemingway, but he must at least have thought he’d made a solid early entry in the inevitable paisley shirt / groupie rampage “rise and fall of a rock group” paperback sub-genre… and as such, we can only imagine the sheer level of face-palm he must have experienced when he saw what the design team at Mayflower/Dell did to it.

Still, the physics students and the pub stripper they roped in for the photo shoot look like they’re having fun. (Check the upside down painting in the background – because life in our society is, like, UPSIDE DOWN, man!)

Seemingly slightly better known for his SF work, Thom Keyes (1949-1995) is “mainly remembered as the writer of the ‘Space: 1999’ episode ‘The Taybor’”, it says here, and he also contributed to New Worlds.

In and of themselves, the sections of ‘All Night Stand’ I read prior to this post are no great shakes, but for a novel published before its author’s eighteenth birthday it’s a reasonably impressive achievement, I think it’s fair to say.

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