First published in 1943, The Freak-Show Murders is a classic, but long-neglected, 9-chapter mystery novella by the king of twisted crime fiction, Fredric Brown. Set in the shadowy confines of a travelling carnival, complete with its own freaks, waxworks and grifters, Brown's story collides the clandestine world of Tod Browning's film Freaks with elements of violent murder, robbery and suspense to forge a gripping genre piece shot through with disquiet and the grotesque. This new edition of The Freak-Show Murders also includes Brown's 6-part 1942 story A Cat From Siam, a spiralling descent into bloody murder, psychosis, mind control and hallucination.
Fredric Brown was one of America's most innovative and experimental pulp authors. Brown's first mystery novel, The Fabulous Clipjoint, won the Edgar Award for outstanding first mystery novel. His novel The Screaming Mimi became a 1958 movie starring Anita Ekberg and Gypsy Rose Lee, and directed by Gerd Oswald.