Real-Time Review continued from HERE

Wicken Fen – Paul Finch
They oozed sexiness…”
Another worthy story, this time written by the anthology’s editor. Here, now, aptly,  we have a riparian reality, or in other words, a waterway, one with locks, called a ‘lode’ in the Wicken Fen area near Ely and the other Fens, where I myself enjoyed a holiday a number of months ago. The photo to the left is one I took in Wicken Fen. This is a come-uppance story (to match the Johnson story, because any robbery or disloyalty or conceded-to temptation by Man is a common  (Shucks!) mis-symbiosis).  This Finch story is a skilful suspenseful page-turner, with very evocative, often darkly poetic conveyance of the ‘genius loci’ (to which I can testify from my own experience of the place), possessing that delightfully disturbing, acute, yet textured, horror prose of the horror genre, as our two male narrow-boaters, ‘suffering’ this book’s many earlier marital strains, meet shape-shifters that, here, are “perfectly shaped”. So sexily described, I fell for them, myself. At one moment ‘Warm and Comfortable Terror’ with its satisfying echoes of ‘Three Miles Up’ (cf: the pair’s fatal ‘three point turn’ of the narrow boat) and of ‘The Willows’, both classic ghost stories, yet all such great stories, including the Finch, contain real uncomfortably chilling Terror, too, amid the sodden greens and ‘crimson cavities’. A fuckerlode of a story. (16 Oct 12 – 4.20 pm bst)

Wolferton Hall – James Doig
“…even fabricating a pedigree for the Throgmortons going back to Noah himself!”
A PhD scholar (significantly orphaned) seeks — via Doig’s highly honed, traditionally garbed prose that depicts such seeking — the key to the ‘ancestral guilt’ of a family wherefrom arrives, through his bookish research (while explicitly ‘seized by Terror’), another shapeshifting Shuck for this anthology,  one ‘born’ from folk tales and legends, amid a country seat steeped we sense in East Anglia. A conflation involved, we are told  (but my real-time review, like the scholar’s own form of research, may be full of such conflations or false connections) and, so, I humbly infer, notwithstanding all such possible conflations, that the mausoleum building at story’s end may be a sort of Noah’s Ark for the dead! And upon that inference, Terror seized me, too. [This whole book, I feel, may be about guilt, ancestral or otherwise. Coiling like a dynastic river…] “…the history of their house, and how my life was intertwining with theirs.” (16 Oct 12 – 7.25 pm bst)



This is the real-time reviewer, about three years ago, at the Minsmere Bird Sanctuary, Suffolk, England (not too far from Dunwich) with Sizewell Nuclear Power Station in the distance:-


One thought on “*

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s