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Harris, Walter

Entry updated 13 September 2021. Tagged: Author.

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(1925-2019) UK journalist and author who began publishing work of genre interest with "The Day Auntie Became a Zombie" for the Canadian magazine Liberty in October 1954, and in whose first sf novel, The Mistress of Downing Street (1972), the UK's first woman prime minister helps save her 1990s world from Computer domination and moral decay by international relations of an erotic nature with other world leaders. The Day I Died (1974) is a lively ghost story. The Fifth Horseman (1976) and Saliva (1977) are Disaster tales: in the first, the UK slides into the sea when the pumping-out of North Sea oil leaves a literal hole, while in the second rabies crosses the Channel at last and a contaminated man inadvertently infects his mistress, who is the wife of the prime minister. All these works have a distinct edge of Satire.

Harris's two contributions to a short-lived series of Universal Horror film Ties under the House Name Carl Dreadstone include Creature from the Black Lagoon (1977; 1980 as by E K Leyton), a second and considerably different take on The Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954) which re-imagines the Gill-Man as a murderously destructive thirty-ton Monster. [JC/DRL]

Walter Harris

born London: 18 October 1925

died 9 May 2019

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