Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Bad News

My very favorite mystery author is gone. I just found out from Sarah.

NEW BALTIMORE -
George Clark Chesbro, 68, of New Baltimore, died Tuesday, November 18, 2008 at St. Peter's Hospital.

Born in Washington, D.C. on June 4, 1940, he was the son of the late George W. and Maxine (Sharpe) Chesbro. An author of over 25 novels and nearly 100 short stories, George was a recipient of an Ellery Queen Award and had served as president of the Mystery Writers Association of America. Earlier in his career, George had worked as a special education teacher at Pearl River and at the Rockland Psychiatric Center where he worked with emotionally troubled teens.

Survivors include his wife, Robin N. Chesbro; a son, Mark Chesbro;, a daughter Michelle Chesbro; two stepdaughters, Rachael and Leah Gass; a sister, Judith (Richard) Ragone and many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews.

Services are private at the convenience of the family.

In lieu of flowers, those who wish may send a remembrance in his name to the Mohawk and Hudson River Humane Society, 3 Oakland Ave., Menands, NY 12204.

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One of the first things I wrote for Bookslut was
an essay about his books and what a fantastic, lost treasure trove of fantasy, science fiction and iron-jawed noir they were. To this day, I still buy Chesbro paperbacks every single time I find them in used bookstores, just so I have a stash to give to friends. A few days after the column appeared, I got a nice email from Hunter, the webmaster at his site, Dangerousdwarf.com. And then a few hours later, I got this email.

"Dear Clayton,

Your article is obviously heartfelt and tremendously flattering. I appreciate it very much. Thank you. Mongo and Garth send their regards.

Best,

George C. Chesbro."

There was nobody like him.

Further reading:

A Mystery One interview

An interview with Inkwell Newswatch

The 'lost' Mongo novel, published in French in 2007 but that hadn't yet found an English publisher.

Short, Sharp, Shock: The Work of George C. Chesbro

More from the Rap Sheet, including a brief personal remembrance from J. Kingston Pierce.

Monday, November 3, 2008