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Unique mystery a fitting tribute to Lewis Carroll

Night of the Jabberwock

by Fredric Brown

Endeavour Press

Horror, Sci Fi & Fantasy

Pub Date 30 Dec 2016


Night of the Jabberwock is a brilliant and unusual mystery perfect for lovers of early noir and Lewis Carroll. Frederic Brown not only gives readers a cunningly plotted murder mystery, he offers some of the most eloquent commentary on books, life and death that I've seen. Frederic Brown distributes quotes from Lewis Carroll throughout - a definite match for the surreal sequence of events. Night of the Jabberwock isn't really a fantasy although there are some fantastic elements. Nor is it a horror story. It is most definitely a mystery.

Doc Stoeger runs a small town paper. He likes his chess, his liquor and his Lewis Carroll, not necessarily in that order. Carmel City rarely has any exciting news. What Doc doesn't bargain for is a night of gangsters, murder, and strange coincidences. Ultimately framed for a double murder, believed to be a madman and hunted by police with orders to shoot on sight, Doc must plumb the depths to win a game of chess like no other.

Unlike other nods to Lewis Carroll, Night of the Jabberwock doesn't reengineer his classic tales. It is wholly unique. Doc Stoeger is a fascinating character, easy going and good natured but far more clever than Father William to whom he is often compared. He is a perfect hero for this unusual thriller.


I received a copy of Night of the Jabberwock from the publisher and in exchange for an honest review.



All Doc Stoeger wants is a good piece of news from the citizens of Carmel City to print in his small-town paper Clarion. What he doesn’t bargain for is four deaths in one night, and none of them by accident.

After meeting a strange little man who shares his love for all things Lewis Carroll, Stoeger finds himself drawn into a night of confounding adventures that might soon turn to terrors.

First a couple of big-time mobsters blow through town. Then, the bank gets robbed, and a lunatic escapes from the local asylum.

But all that pales in comparison to the strange little man who claims he can take Stoeger through Alice’s looking glass…

This night is going to get even stranger.

Beware the Jabberwock, the man says.

But will Stoeger heed the warning?

Night of the Jabberwock is a brilliant and bizarre murder mystery from a master of the SF genre, Fredric Brown.

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