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Wednesday, 22 August 2012

jean ray: malpertuis

image via sospechososcinefagos
The garden of decaying books of the last post also popped up on Writers No One Reads, the newish tumblr (I'm going back and forth as I catch up on posts here, so bear with me please) by 50 Watts, also known as A Journey Around My Skull, or Will Schofield, a longtime flickr favourite. Among the (fairly) recent elusive literary reminders and temptations to empty the purse in pursuit of was Malpertuis by Jean Ray, here pictured in a particularly "want" edition. Malpertuis is a haunted house tale by the "Belgian Poe" that, as the Modern Word piece puts it, throws everything into the labyrinthine plot - or pot. So there's the gothic, the carnivalesque, the surreal, modernism, though I like the description of it best as: "gloomy and giddy". That's a first for fantasy-horror, but it works, especially if you also watch the 1971 film adaptation with Orson Welles and Susan Hampshire.

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