QUIET HOUSES BY SIMON KURT UNSWORTH
I’ve been a fan of Simon’s writing for a number of years now, ever sine reading his short story Button. I’t got to the point that if I see his name in a table of contents in an anthology, his is one of if not the first story I’ll turn to.
The Ocean Grand, North West Coast, an hotel is being renovated but there are things in the pictures that have other ideas. This is one of the longer tales of the collection, and as a result Simon manges to slowly build the tension, and overall spookiness. I particularly enjoyed the use and sources of where the ghost came from, and the subtle nods to Lovecraft. A highly satisfying read.
The Temple of Relief and Ease, sees Richard Nakata take centre stage. This tale of a haunted toilet, will literally chill you to the bone.
24 Glasshouse, Glasshouse Estate, is the penultimate tale here. In this tale we are given a brilliant insight into Nakata history, and his involvement in an experiment to create a ghost. As is wont to happen in tales of this sort things go horrible wrong. What happens to the house once the ghost has been created is a brilliant twist, and the ending is both shocking and moving.
Stack’s Farm, is where we find out exactly why Nakata has been investigating these Quiet Houses. The fact that Simon can create a story based on the ghosts of dead cattle, which doesn’t come across as being just plain silly, goes to show just how talented a a writer Simon is. The finale of the story is just, well, your going to have to read it to find out. This is an excellent closing story to one hell of a collection.
With this collection , Simon Kurt Unsworth, has breathed new life, and put new flesh onto a sadly neglected side of horror fiction. The classic haunted house genre has lain dormant for a long time, surpassed my the latest trendy monster. If there is one thing about short stories and short story collections I find disappointing, is that in many cases I feel short changed by them. Sometimes I’m left with a “is that it” feeling. Quiet House couldn’t be further from this. Every one of the stories reads like a much longer tale, and by that I don’t mean they drag. Simon has managed to make each story feel larger and more expansive than just a short story. While this is essentially a short story collection, the linking passages between each story and the stores where Nakata takes centre stage lends the book a more coherent feeling. Reading this collection really made me think of those classic Amicus films of the Seventies
GREAT NEWS FOLKS THE BOOK IS NOW AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDERING
JUST CLICK THE LINK BELOW, AND BUY A COPY.
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