Mary Stevenson Crye, a recently widowed young mother known as Stevie to her family and friends, lives in a small Georgia community with her two children and a balky PDE Exceleriter. As a free-lance writer, she depends upon this last-named device, once a state-of-the-art variety of typewriter, to create income for the maintenance of her small clan.
Then the PDE Exceleriter goes noisily on the fritz, and so many other things begin to go wrong as a result -- from her meeting with a weird young typewriter repairman named Seaton Benecke and Seaton's creepy pet, a capuchin monkey named 'Crets . . . to her "repaired" machine's insistence on typing segments of her everyday life as she either lives or hallucinates it to . . .
Simply let it be known that the horror of Stevie's husband's death from cancer, of her concern for the sexual angst of her son Teddy, and of her doomed but persistent struggle to solve all her problems via her literary calling lead her to the doorstep of a fortuneteller, Sister Celestial, and on to even more remarkable descents into Southern Gothic darkness.
A novel of the American south, an alternately tender and scathing parody of twentieth-century horror novels, and an involving account of one woman's battle to maintain her sanity, Who Made Stevie Crye? will unleash a gamut of reactions from any attentive reader . . . from laughter to disquiet to outrage to incredulity. Back in print again on the thirtieth anniversary of its original publication, this novel awaits new readers to frighten, bemuse, scandalize, and delight. Why not join, or rejoin, them?
"What a joy to see this wonderful, genre-bending novel back in print again. Michael Bishop is a major American fabulist, and Who Made Stevie Crye? (mischievously double-titled The Typing) will not leave you alone after you’ve read it. Who Made Stevie Crye? is a brilliant novel of authentic character. It is also paradoxically a parody, a satire, and a metafiction (metahorror?) that sports with the horror genre of the 1980s. And, oh, yes, lest I forget: beware of typewriters, those soul-stealing clackety-clack machines of a not quite forgotten era."
—Jack Dann, author of The Rebel
"A marvelous book which transcends genre." —Fantasy Review
"A modern ghost story and a top-notch one." —San Francisco Chronicle
"[A] surface synopsis [of Who Made Stevie Crye?] seems to render Bishop’s book into a simple Stephen King-style thriller, albeit much better written, and if only matters of plot and the array of fairly standard tropes were considered, such would indeed be the case. But an added layer of metaphysical complexity accrues by the operations of [Stevie Crye’s] typewriter itself."
—Paul Di Filippo
"Who Made Stevie Crye? proves that Michael Bishop can write anything and make it wonderful."
—Pat Cadigan, author of Synners
"Who Made Stevie Crye? is a smart, funny and very creepy novel of domestic horror, and one with a particularly strong appeal to other writers. This is not only because the main character is a writer—a highly sympathetic, believable character—or that she is menaced by the most vital tool of her trade—but, even more, because the experimental, meta-fictional form of this book deconstructs and interrogates the very act of writing fiction, as it illuminates the strange connections between life and art. Scary, ridiculous, dreamlike, horrific, parodic, fantastical and realistic by turns, it is a unique and irresistible contribution to the genre."
—Lisa Tuttle, author of The Silver Bough
"[A] marvelous evocation of the sink-holes under the cellars of small-town life in America . . . [it] demonstrates how much more could be done with the terror of recognition."
—John Clute, author of Stay
"Genuinely eerie in a lives-inside-your-head way. Yikes!"