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John Collier Biography

(1901–80), Time and Tide, His Monkey Wife, Presenting Moonshine, The Touch of Nutmeg, Fancies and Goodnights

Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Cockfield Suffolk to Frances Cornford (née Darwin) Biography

British short-story writer and novelist, born in London, educated privately. After a period as poetry editor for Time and Tide, from the mid-1930s he spent much time in America and wrote several Hollywood screenplays. The bizarrely imaginative nature of his best-known work is exemplified by his first novel His Monkey Wife (1930), which deals with the marriage between an expatriate schoolteacher and a chimpanzee. His sardonic and often disquietingly macabre short stories were collected in Presenting Moonshine (1941), The Touch of Nutmeg (1943), Fancies and Goodnights (1951), Pictures in the Fire (1958), and The John Collier Reader (1972), with an introduction by A. Burgess. Tom's A-Cold (1933) concerns a young leader of a rural settlement in an England many years after a holocaust has destroyed civilization. His later publications include Milton's Paradise Lost; Screenplay for a Cinema of the Mind (1973).

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