Hunger and Thirst may been the literary event of 2000. Fifty years ago, when he was 23 years old and living in New York City, Richard Matheson wrote his first novel, Hunger and Thirst, a massive 750+ manuscript pages. His then agent told him it was unpublishable due to its length and Matheson put it away and moved to California. The rest is genre history. Had this novel been published Matheson feels his writing career may have taken a far different turn. He’s kept the novel in a drawer for 50 years before reading it over again. Matheson felt it powerful and offered it to Gauntlet as a signed limited. It’s a fabulous read and may not be published in ANY other form, due to its length.
Another first for Matheson is the dust jacket you see on this page. Matheson prefers his books have no cover art, but he is aware that many readers might think he wrote Hunger and Thirst in 2000, not fifty years earlier. He worked closely with Harry Morris on the cover and was so thrilled with the end result that he asked that neither the title of the book nor his name appear on the front cover. We’ve agreed (the title appears here only so you know the title of the book). On the book itself, the title ONLY appears on the spine.
Matheson also provides a lengthy introduction explaining why this book has sat for as long as it has, as well as discussing several other aborted projects including two proposed books that were to be 2000 pages apiece. Wonderful insight for any Matheson fan.
Hunger and Thirst is the story of a man shot in an aborted robbery who wakes up to find himself paralyzed. The book flashes back to his sordid past as he hopes to be rescued to be given a chance at redemption.