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Edited by Mark Williams
Published by Chapmans, 1991

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A selection of fiction drawn from the pages of the Evening News was assembled in Mark Williams' two-volume anthology The Evening News Collection, published by Chapmans in 1991. The first volume includes an introduction by the author Leslie Thomas, who contributed a number of stories to the newspaper and was once a staff writer on the Evening News. Monica Dickens, another famous contributor to the newspaper, wrote the introduction to the second volume of Williams' anthology.

Among the authors whose stories are included in the collection are Rosemary Timperley, Herbert Harris, Margaret Webb, Denys Val Baker, Louis Allegri, Cardew Robinson, Dillon McCarthy and Robert Quigley. Most of the stories that Mark Williams reprinted in The Evening News Collection were drawn from issues of the newspaper in the 1970s. Sadly, there were no stories included by regular contributors such as Paul Feakes, Jane Locke, C. T. Stoneham, W. P. Speechley and Howard Jones.

Another more serious flaw of the collection is the unfortunate fact that at least one story in the anthology has had its ending inexplicably removed. In the case of Herbert Harris' "The Promise of Four Vital Blue Notes," several paragraphs at the end of the original story are missing from the version that appears in The Evening News Collection, thus making the conclusion of the story incomprehensible. It was only after checking the original story, as it appeared in the newspaper, that I realised the mistake in the Williams anthology. Furthermore, the final line in Rosemary Timperley's story "An Old Lady Sings the Blues" is missing from the version that appears in the book. One cannot be sure where exactly these errors originated, but it is a pity that Williams' book contains these mistakes. As far as I know there were no later editions of the collection printed where such flaws may have been corrected. I have not yet had the chance to compare any of the other stories in the collection to the originals to see if any further mistakes were made.

Despite the problems mentioned above, The Evening News Collection is still a worthy anthology which aptly showcases the remarkable diversity of stories that were published in the newspaper. Each handsome volume contains an informative and entertaining introduction, providing valuable insights into the history of the newspaper. Many of the stories featured in the collection are quite excellent, and serve as a decent taster of the kind of short fiction that appeared in the Evening News. A full list of contents for each volume in this collection can be found below.


Foreword by Mark Williams
Introduction by Leslie Phillips
A Good Boy, Griffith by Leslie Phillips
How a Pub was Shipwrecked by a Sailor's Return... by W. W. Jacobs
A Midnight Train to Nowhere by Ken Follett
A Fine Sight by Denys Val Baker
Day to Remember by James Clavell
Bigger Money, Dear by Anthony Grey
Company Requested by Cardew Robinson
Poor M. Revoise by R. B. Layland
Once in Love with Carla by Stan Moye
The Specialist by Robert Quigley
The Lippi Madonna by Joan Forman
Key to the Question by Stephen Phillips
Hot South Wind by Edward Richard Rosset
Just a Peasant by Plichta Hall
Give a Man Enough Rope... by Frank Broadbridge
Games People Play by David Hunter
It is Called Love by Barbara Cartland
Every Woman Needs to Have a Secret by Linden Howard
Postscript to a Marriage by Kay Harris
Bartram's Book by Peter Wallace
Dented Dignity by Peter Wallace
Pay Time by John Renwick
Horses? I've Found the Magic Formula by Ray Kinross
A Very Simple Job by Peter Walsh
Wolf at the Door by Peter Walsh
The Thing That Went Scratch in the Night by Daniel Farson
Fat Cat by Brett Roberts
The Promise of Four Vital Blue Notes by Herbert Harris
When Sisterly Love is at a Premium by G. M. Karhunen
Feeding Their Every Need by Susan Muir
A Modern Christmas Carol by Monica Dickens
Last of the Lady's Wine by Terry Tapp
London Interlude by Michael Dawes
City Encounter by Philip Sagar
A Gentleman of the Road Smells Death by Paul Stuart
That First Week by John Aston
Looking for Clancy by L. F. Lampitt
The Frigate by Kenneth Hadler
Port of Rye by David R. Murduck
The Day Macey's Time Was Up by John W. R. Unsworth
Checkmate by John W. R. Unsworth
Death Through a Glass...Darkly by Rik Ashard
Big Dippers by John Duncan
You and I Are About to Die by Bill Bryson
The Unadulterated by Louis Allegri
Father's Day of Reckoning by Margaret Webb
The Pick-Up by Edgar Wallace
Two of a Kind by Douglas Baker
The Hairpiece by N. A. Hilton
The Traveller by J. S. Brennan
Revenge of the Golden Lady by Nigel Pocknell
The Gong by Anthony Steel
Sold for a Farthing by Edward Turberville
The Tramp by Dillibe Onyeama
Issey Walk-About by Peter Kniveton
Hassan the Sweet Puts the Bite on us Suckers by Bob Monkhouse
The Birthday Book by Leslie Thomas
Scoring off Jeeves by P. G. Wodehouse
The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry
A Child's Christmas by Dylan Thomas


Introduction by Monika Dickens
The Tired Old Man by Monica Dickens
The Cat with One Life by Nigel Morland
Trouble With Time by Arthur C. Clarke
An Old Lady Sings the Blues by Rosemary Timperley
He Couldn't Win this Waiting Game by Jane Wallace
The Real McCoy by Lachlan McIntyre
Hands by Dorothy Bennett
The Führer's Last Farewell by Plichta Hall
Dangerous Bend by Herbert Harris
With a Song in Her Heart by Martin K. Howard
Perchance to Dream by Cardew Robinson
A Friend in Greed by Philip Allott
An Egg in the Hand by P. W. R. Foot
The Farewell Gift that Just Wasn't Enough by Joy Mary Higham
Getting McGinty's Goat by Dillon McCarthy
The Judge's Dilemma by Louis Allegri
Bomb in the Bed by Harry Secombe
It Could Only Happen Once by Spike Milligan
The Wastrel by Peter Sellers
The Cat Burglar by Victoria Eden
Postscript to a Betrayal by Margaret Webb
Jimmy Pawson Doesn't Care by Hilton Ambler
Love Letter Straight from the Heart by Terry Tapp
It's a Dog's Life for a Greedy Tramp by Roy Granville
The Sea Serpent by W. W. Jacobs
A Sting in the Tail of Harry's Summer by Douglas Railton
Mango Millionaire by Anthony Steel
Semaphore by Willis Carstairs
Love was Quite a Blow to Adam by William Glynne-Jones
Short Measure by Leslie Thomas
The Russian Princess by Willy Trebich
My Husband Says it All with Flowers by Martha Duncan
Ratcatcher by Herbert Harris
Elementary, My Dearest Watson by Eric Bean
Donald the Diplomat by John Hynam
Against the Bidding by Denys Val Baker
Simple Sailor by Bartimeus
Family Funeral by Giovanni Ceccarelli
The Brand of Eve by C. S. Forester
The Housekeeper by J. I. Hobbs
Phantom at the Head of the Louis Allegri
Star Gazers by Roy Bolitho
The Winning Secret by Peter Wey
A Reflection of Life on the Last Tram to Tooting by Robert Quigley
Death Trap by Jonathan Clark
The Treasure of the Ancient Mariner by Peter Peterson
More Than One Way to Kill a Tony Steed
The Source of the World by H. E. Bates
What You Might Call the Stare of the Dog by Marjorie Fisher
Love that had to Wait by W. J. Elsham
Unaccustomed Sheila by Kate Grenville
Room with a View by Kate Grenville
Sandy Plays a Waiting Game by Kate Grenville
Step Inside, Young Stranger by N. Tregenna
Fugitive on the Tobacco Trail by Martin Conlan
Gun-man Meets the Sleeping Beauty by Larry Talbot
Jeeves Cracks the Great Pearl Robbery by P. G. Wodehouse
How Ubaldo Cleaned Up at Sloppy Joe's by Douglas Railton
Lucky Thirteen by William Glynne-Jones
The Thick Brown Door by Peter Kniveton



Copyright © 2006 Richard Simms