Come Fygures, Come Shadowes

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9781887368605: Come Fygures, Come Shadowes
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Book by Matheson, Richard

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From the Publisher:

COME FYGURES, COME SHADOWES, a previously unpublished novel by Richard Matheson, will be released in its entirety for the first time in February/March 2003. This is an UNSIGNED COPY of the book. If you want a SIGNED copy of the book (and at a discount), you must purchase it directly from the Gauntlet Press website.

The story behind this novel is almost as fascinating as the book itself...

Matheson intended on COME FYGURES, COME SHADOWES to be a 2000-page novel (he discusses the book in Gauntlet’s HUNGER AND THIRST). His editor, after seeing the first section of the book, told Matheson that there was no way such a massive novel would sell. Matheson reluctantly discontinued his work on the novel. As he discusses in the Afterword of the book, which Matheson wrote expressly for this edition, not completing the book was a decision he will forever regret.

A portion of COME FYGURES, COME SHADOWES appeared in a book of Matheson’s novellas and short stories years ago – but this is the first time all of what he wrote for this book is being published.

COME FYGURES, COME SHADOWES deals with a medium who desperately wants her daughter to follow in her footsteps. It’s both a supernatural thriller and a story of child abuse that won’t soon be forgotten by the reader. In his Afterword, Matheson provides the rest of the plot of the 2000-page book he originally envisioned.

Although Matheson only wrote 144-pages of COME FYGURES COME SHADOWES, it is in and of itself a novel, ending perfectly. It is some of Matheson’s most gripping and intense work, and is destined to join A STIR OF ECHOES, I AM LEGEND and THE SHRINKING MAN as a Matheson classic.

From Publishers Weekly:

Since it first appeared in fragmentary form in a short-fiction collection in 1970, this tale has earned legendary status among Matheson's fans as his great uncompleted novel about the dark side of modern spiritualism. Now a much larger fragment that weaves occult thrills into its haunting study of a reluctant spirit medium, it tantalizes with the unfulfilled promise of what might have been the author's magnum opus. Set in Brooklyn in the 1930s, it relates a sad interval in the life of 18-year-old Claire Nielsen, the oldest of three children being groomed by their determined mother, Morna, to follow in her footsteps as a spirit medium. As depicted by Matheson, spiritualism is indistinguishable from a religious calling, and Morna is a frighteningly fanatical exponent who threatens Claire with hellfire and damnation when she pleads to be relieved of her vocation. Coerced into sitting for seances that make her physically ill, Claire soon finds herself a conduit for ectoplasmic manifestations of the spirit world whose revolting intimacy and intrusive physicality amount to sexual violation. Matheson's rigorous research of spiritualist phenomena informs every aspect of the tale, imbuing its convincingly described supernatural moments with both awe and terror and shaping its characters as unique people who believe unquestioningly in the marvels of the afterlife. At the very least, this gripping tale synchs with his paranormal thriller Hell House and anecdotal nonfiction volume Mediums Rare. But it also hits a high-water mark as an exercise in the modern gothic.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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