THIS WEEK’S FICTION
Noteworthy was the (very) short story Rescue from The Dark Netizen. A humorous excursion of misbegotten Don Juanism.
Give Was Her Resting? from Terror House Magazine a read, echoes of Reynolds Price.
“Well, ain’t that sweet? Old fool and his doggie.”
The voice came from behind him, and Bud jumped and turned. Standing right behind him was a a pale, cadaverous young man with a tuft of hair on his chin and large metal discs in his earlobes. He was wearing a filthy T-shirt and the rank odor of his body struck Bud like a fist. Behind the young man was an even younger black man, dressed all in black and wearing a knitted skullcap on his close-cropped hair. Both of them were sneering at Bud, and both of them had glittering, crazed eyes. The one closest to Bud lifted a pistol and pointed it right between the older man’s eyes.
“Where’s the pills?”
Serialized (Sometimes Ongoing) Stories
One of the more interesting pieces of writing I read this week was the fascinating and yet-unfinished fiction series, The Devil’s Peak (I & II) by R. C. Darabant of The Story Hive. It is one of those tales wherein, the less you know going into it, the more tantalizing it is and we are certainly interested to see how it ends.
Novellas & Novels
I’ve currently been reading a number of novels, one of which entitled Dark Journey (Bantam Spectra, 1991) by the pseudonymous horror-writer, A.R. Morlan, stood out as being particularly compelling. Fans of Harlan Ellison’s work will likely appreciate the text, as Morlan explicitly makes mention of the fact that Ellison’s Gopher In The Gilly, played a vital role in inspiring certain sections of her own tale. From the backcover:
TOWN OF EVIL
Ewerton: a decaying small town, its glory days many years gone – if they ever existed… Few residents know that these times were built on corruption and lies, that the town was founded on evil. Palmer Winston glimpsed the eerie truth in a mysterious woman – and spent his last fifty years trying to recapture it. His oldest friend, Lamer Nemmitz, saw her too – it turned him sour and mean, as his humanity withered within him.
CARNIVAL OF HORRORS
The Water Carnival: a faded memory of imagined better times. This year will be the most memorable in Ewerton history. This year the South-State Enterprises Carnival, outlawed in Ewerton since 1923, returns. The crooked games, the mentalist, the freak show. And the true horror, disguised by a beautiful face and a Veronica Lake waterfall of caramel-blond hair, a thing born of corruption.
NIGHT OF JUDGMENT
The Ewerton High ten-year reunion: when she will return to her hometown and give birth to a terror from which there can be no escape…
Just as spooky as it sounds (only better written than the amusing, but rather in-your-face sensationalism of the promo text, which probably wasn’t written by Morlan herself).
Commentary, Critique & Analysis
A interesting entry from Alina Hansen this week in the character of Gertrude Stein’s “Autobiography” of Alice. The piece, though in no wise lengthy, was quite informative on one of the writer’s most popular works, The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas (it is not actually a true autobiography, hence Hansen’s deployment of air-quotes in her title) for someone like myself who is not well-versed with the works of Stein.
BEST OF THE WEEK
Our nomination for the best fiction-related piece of the week is not, itself, a work of fiction but rather a historical exegis of the life, times and works of the Argentinian writer Jorge Luis Borges by OddMadLand entitled, Erase Their Eyes, Ensure Their Devotion. As someone who knew next to nothing about Borges, the piece was considerably edifying (and exceptionally written, as is everything at OddMadLand). It is a lengthy article but well worth the read.
(The existence of these new events bring more to the event than there was before. There is a devil behind them, it is the antichrist. Jorge Luis Borges wants us to understand that by turning away from time in favour of space a wrinkle is created that allows the devil to dance behind our back. This leads to a powerful realization, that the apocalypse is cumulative, gradual, always already happening, that the antichrist is a time traveler who, in altering the timeline, creates chaos at a distance, chaos for the future. If for God time is always complete, than the only way for the devil to sabotage Gods absolutely completed space is to create alternative versions of the original events. That way, blasphemies would occur: like sons being peers to their fathers or christ’s resurrection.)
WORST OF THE WEEK
Thankfully nothing to report at present.
Join us next week for more recommendations and literary commentary. Thank you for reading.