On the 15th January 1947, a young woman was found dead in the southern region of Los Angeles. Her name was Elizabeth Short, but she soon became known as the Black Dahlia. Her murder has never been solved, although several theories have been put forward (which we won’t be going into here. This case forms the basis of James Ellroy’s novel, the first of a series known as the L.A. Quartet, simply titled The Black Dahlia.
Book Review: The Fiends in the Furrows: An Anthology of Folk Horror, edited by David T. Neal and Christine M. Scott (2018)
Folk horror is a term that’s been applied to films more than books. The so-called ‘Unholy Trinity’ of folk horror films (1968’s Witchfinder General, 1971’s The Blood On Satan’s Claw, and 1973’s The Wicker Man) were the first to codify the genre, though it’s since been applied retrospectively to a number of other works. More recent examples include The Witch (2015), Midsommar (2019), and Kill List (2011). The Fiends in the Furrows: An Anthology of Folk Horror is an attempt to redress this balance, collecting nine short stories that each have their own fascinating take on the genre.
I have an interest in the books that authors write after completing a masterpiece. Dickens wrote Hard Times, China Mieville wrote Kraken, and Haruki Murakami wrote Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage. What these have in common is interesting. While not their best books, they are almost perfect examples of the authors’ own specific tendencies. This means that Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki features a listless male protagonist, strange quasi-magical incidents, pared-back writing style, philosophical dialogue, and much discussion of classical music. But to reduce it to a mix of the author’s cliches would be reductive, since there’s a lot more going on than that.
Atticus Book Reviews
Book reviews and reading recommendations written by volunteers and friends of the shop!