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Supersaturated with supernal purple: a third sheaf of horror shorts from Ligotti (Grimscribe, Songs of a Dead Dreamer) that binds bodiless slumberings into a lurid triumph of wordcraft over forlorn weirdness. The present nighttime ditties (earlier magazine publication was not noted in our galley) show him again focused on the decaying glow of a scholarly solitary obsessed by horrific studies and going over the edge as his worst, most hidden fear rises up concretely before him. As in Verdi, Ligotti stories witness the unstoppable force of Fate. Character rarely develops, is only acted upon by an inscrutable malignancy, seen in the indigo of death's twilight glamour. Here, the author opens with a note ``on the appreciation of weird fiction'' whose ideas and sidelights woo us down a gleaming path in a dim woods: ``A man awakes in the darkness and reaches over for his eyeglasses. The eyeglasses are placed in his hand.'' In ``The Medusa,'' a bookish philosopher fixated on the faces of the Medusa in human existence (the horrific is everywhere) finally meets his goddess--and becomes one with the horror in his soul. In ``Conversations in a Dead Language,'' a fat postman given to babytalk is trick-or-treated into his dreamfate by midget vampires and jack-o'-lanterns amid the delirium and disorder of Halloween. In his descriptive short novel ``Tsalal'' (Tsalal is a book of mock scholarship like H.P. Lovecraft's heady but fictitious volume of abstruse weirdness, The Necronomicon), Ligotti relates spiritual particulars of a half-world borderland community called Moxton, which is seen with the vivid brightness of nicked lead. The final ``Notebook of the Night'' slips us into a dozen or so drab labyrinths past all lamplight. An exhalation of evenings with the half-dead. -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Publishers Weekly:
Ligotti's ( Grimscribe ) clever title suggests the marriage of "nocturne" and "mortuary," an appropriate preparation for this dark grouping of tales. In the foreword, the author explains that they fall in the category of "weird fiction," that is, extreme gothic horror, featuring macabre endings and unremitting doom. The studied extravagance in the narration of the some of the stories verges on stylistic overkill. Nevertheless, as gothic tales, a number of them are interesting. Three good tales are "The Medusa," which tells of a scholar obsessed with the Gorgon whom Perseus apparently did not kill; "Mrs. Rinaldi's Angel," a tale that lends new meaning to the term "bad dreams"; and the novella-length "The Tsalal," a gothic work of demonic prophecy that boasts a gruesome ending. These 27 stories describe shadowy worlds of blurred dimensions and ill-lit interiors; as with all such tales, the "when" and "where" are much less important than the atmosphere of gothic horror produced by Ligotti's baroque prose.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Robinson Publishing, 1994. Hardcover. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P111854872338