Category Archives: Reviews

HIGHWAY BLUE by Ailsa McFarlane

That Highway Blue is a debut novel is remarkable. The writing is superb, incredibly controlled and restrained. It tells the story of Anne Marie, a young woman who has been living in a shared house in San Padua since her … Continue reading

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LAST DAYS IN CLEAVER SQUARE by Patrick McGrath

Patrick McGrath is an author whose career I have followed since I first read Asylum back in the late 90s. His writing often tackles the psychological impact of emotional trauma, sometimes by hinting at supernatural elements like spectres and shadowy … Continue reading

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BEYOND THE VEIL edited by Mark Morris

Beyond the Veil is the second non-themed horror anthology from Flame Tree Press edited by Mark Morris, following on from last year’s After Sundown. I had a enjoyable time reading the first book so I approached this one with a … Continue reading

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WHEN THINGS GET DARK edited by Ellen Datlow

A themed anthology can sometimes be a tricky thing, often the curate’s egg of the literary world. On one hand you might get stories that act almost as a pastiche of the source theme, either tonally or in prose style … Continue reading

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APRIL IN SPAIN by John Banville

John Banville is an award winning author of literary fiction, one with an impeccable writing career spanning more than half a century. Since 2006, under the pen-name Benjamin Black, he has published a series of crime novels featuring the forensic … Continue reading

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MIRRORLAND by Carole Johnstone

Cat lives in Los Angeles, far away from 36 Westeryk Road, the imposing gothic house in Edinburgh where she and her estranged twin sister, El, grew up. As girls, they invented Mirrorland, a dark, imaginary place under the pantry stairs full … Continue reading

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BLACK WATER – THE BOOK OF FANTASTIC LITERATURE edited by Alberto Manguel

Published in 1983, Black Water, edited by Argentine-born Canadian writer Alberto Manguel, is a mammoth short-story anthology, collecting together 72 fantastic tales from around the world (many of them translated from their original language). Contained within are disquieting stories, fragments … Continue reading

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THE FOURTH PROTOCOL by Frederick Forsyth

First published in 1984, and set several years in the future, Frederick Forsyth’s ninth novel, The Fourth Protocol, is a complex but superbly written espionage story, set during the Cold War, involving Russia’s interference in the UK’s 1987 general election. … Continue reading

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THE TRUANTS by Kate Weinberg

Jess Walker is in her first year at a university in East Anglia, studying an aspect of the works of Agatha Christie. There she falls under the spell of her tutor, Lorna Clay, who happens to be a successful novelist … Continue reading

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THE SUNKEN LAND BEGINS TO RISE AGAIN by M John Harrison

I first came across the fiction of M John Harrison in the late 80s and early 90s, in the anthologies edited by Stephen Jones – the annual Best New Horror and his original Dark Terrors series. His writing, on the … Continue reading

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