Strange Tales of the Curiously Uncommon is a collection of darkly humorous short stories, each with a cunning twist in the tale. When extraordinary events befall some of London's most ordinary of inhabitants, unexpected turns lead to some witty, strange, sometimes shocking yet ultimately gratifying results.
As a boy, Horatio Higgins was ignored by the other children, but that didn't stop him having lots of friends... friends only he could see and whom he'd regale with tales of his fantastical exploits. Eventually, though, his parents became concerned at the inordinate amount of time their son appeared to spend talking to himself and took him for treatment, which, in time, proved successful... almost. One friend remained. Unfortunately it was the spiteful one.
"Oddly refreshing story"
In a broken world there exists a strange and sinister eating establishment unlike anything known or imagined - referred to in some quarters as Cafe Grotesquerie - where only the most discriminating and well-connected are privileged enough to enter its doors and devour its dark delicacies. Once inside, however, status still reigns supreme, and for one particular couple - Audrey and Aubrey - a hunger for power proves far more desirable than anything on the menu. But when confronted by the suspicious disappearance of their waiter, and civilization collapsing all around them, will they even be able to make it through dessert?
"A strange but wonderful collection"
After 30 years of arid matrimony and suburban monotony, Mrs. Pennington-South's only dream is that her son, Cuthbert, will break free of the cycle of upper-middle-class inertia that suffocated her. Raising him in the hope that he is homosexual, she soon begins dragging home potential suitors for tea - on this particular occasion a rather shy, awkward young man named Tristram. Cuthbert, however, finds he can no longer maintain his facade and at last confesses to his mother his guilty secret: his heterosexuality.
Accustomed to a life of cosseted seclusion at home with his parents, Valentine is suddenly faced with making his own way in the world. His new life is quickly upended, however, when he's mugged at gunpoint. Finding shelter at a mysterious inn run by the dour Mrs. Anna, he soon encounters a Bosnian woman with a hole where her stomach used to be, an American entrepreneur with a scheme to implant televisions into people's foreheads, and a Catholic priest who attempts to lure him down inside a sink....