Happy Halloween, y’all! I hope everyone has fantastically spooky plans for this exciting Monday night, or if not, that you at least got your spoop in this weekend.
In the spirit of All Hallows Read, I figured I’d use this post to recommend a scary book. I unfortunately ended up taking this duty too seriously, and ended up reading a book that was just a little beyond my spook limits. It’s cool, though. I’ll sleep again eventually.
The Call by Peadar O’Guilin piqued my interest despite my inability to handle horror because it wasn’t generic horror—it was fairy-based horror. I’ll read pretty much anything that puts a dark twist on fairy lore, so I dove in headfirst.
Vague spoilers and a trigger warning for extreme body horror after the jump.
Despite having owned the book Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell for many years, it was only recently that I sat down with a mind to actually read it. Faced with a long plane ride and with the allure of a BBC adaptation of the novel to watch when I was done, I finally picked it up. I was initially alarmed at the antiquated voice (complete with footnotes and authorial asides), but it turned out to be a both readable and, in fact, enjoyable story. Throughout my reading experience, I found myself constantly intrigued by the way magic worked in the world of Messrs. Strange and Norrell. Spoilers after the jump!
After rereading The Perilous Gard last week, fairy stories of all sorts were on my mind. I love reading about them, but, well, should I enjoy it? How good are fairies, anyway? The answer is, not particularly—at least by human standards—but that’s not necessarily a bad thing from a storytelling perspective.
There comes a time in every fantasy fan’s life where they’re faced with the Real Facts about fairies. That is to say, that, in most of the mythology about the fae, they’re almost never aligned with good or evil in the way that humans understand them. They’re not really Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather, but they’re not really Maleficent either. Rather, they have their own morality, and follow their own rules regarding what is and is not acceptable behavior.
For me, this discovery came around sixth grade, when I first read The Perilous Gard.