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RubyTombstone

Bloody Shambles

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Pale Fire: A Poem in Four Cantos by John Shade
Vladimir Nabokov, Brian Boyd
Pale Fire
Vladimir Nabokov
Lords of Chaos: The Bloody Rise of the Satanic Metal Underground New Edition
Michael Moynihan, Didrik Søderlind
Under Stones
Bob Franklin
The Erotic Potential of My Wife
David Foenkinos, Yasmine Gaspard
A Corner of White
Jaclyn Moriarty
Winter's Bone
Daniel Woodrell
Progress: 99 %
Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders
Neil Gaiman
The Beetle
Richard Marsh
Wreck This Journal
Keri Smith
City of Saints and Madmen - Jeff VanderMeer, Michael Moorcock The Tombstone Guide to City of Saints & MadmenThe book lay on the weathered coffee table, pages spilling loosely from its tattered, well-worn binding, a suggestion of mould dotting the cardboard of the inside jacket, close to the spine. The following elements were (barely) contained within:• A beautifully written fantasy/horror novel, complete with intricate world-building, playful (indeed masterful), use of the English language, inexorable creeping dread and a strong sense of whimsy. Comparisons to Lovecraft, Mieville, Peake, Moorcock, Pratchett or Gaiman would not be unfounded.• A highly sophisticated work of post-modern metafiction which uses a range of fictional documents (psychiatric reports, magazine articles, family histories, letters, essays, bibliographies etc) to construct a multidimensional collage, full of hundreds of fully cross-referenced stories-within-stories. Use of the word, “literary”, would not be unfounded, however meaningless that term may be.• An insidious web of conspiracy and secret societies, reaching out and attaching itself to inhabitants of the real world and, inevitably, engulfing the reader. Reference to Robert Anton Wilson’s Illuminatus Trilogy, in describing this aspect, would be unavoidable.• A living creature which has the power to transform and to be transformed by the act of being read. VanderMeer is a character himself, but as he says, "It's not a one-to-one relationship”. He is all of the characters, therefore would not also the reader be an integral part of the story, changing the story, perhaps changed by the story…?• A small purple mushroom with a white stem.A Note About The Cover Design: This reader would have preferred to see a beautifully lavish cover designed by one of the several wonderful artists whose works graced the interior pages of City of Saints & Madmen. In my humble opinion, the paperback cover design is not suited to either the feel of the story or the style(s) of the other artwork. It is definitely not suited to having enthusiastic readers flick back and forth between various appendices without the book rapidly disintegrating in their hands.Dr. R