Basil Copper (1924-2013)

British author Basil Copper, 89, died April 4, 2013, likely of complications from Alzheimer’s. Copper was a prolific author of horror and mystery fiction, and was named a World Horror Grandmaster in 2010.

His horror novels include The Great White Space (1974), The Curse of the Fleers (1976), Necropolis (1980), The House of the Wolf (1983), Into the Silence (1983), and The Black Death (1991). Copper did much of his best work for editor August Derleth, whose  Arkham House published two of Copper’s novels and collections From Evil’s Pillow (1973, a World Fantasy Award finalist) and And Afterward, the Dark (1977). Copper also wrote many stories about Derleth’s character Solar Pons. Most of Copper’s output was actually hardboiled fiction, including over 50 novels about  private eye Mike Faraday.

Copper was born February 5, 1924, and worked for 30 years as a journalist, including 14 years as a news editor. His short work appeared in numerous collections, notably two-volume set Darkness, Mist and Shadow: The Collected Macabre Tales of Basil Copper (2010). Stephen Jones compiled and edited biographical bibliography Basil Copper: A Life in Books (2008), winner of a British Fantasy Award.

See the May issue of Locus for a complete obituary.