Wed, 23 April 2014 The Green Book – issue 3

Today I received my contributor’s copies of The Green Book: Writings on Irish Gothic, Supernatural and Fantastic Literature, issue 3.

The Green Book is a handsome anthology of essays and reviews published regularly by The Swan River Press, edited by Brian J. Showers.

The Green Book, issue 3

Issue 3 is devoted to examining the work of Ireland pre-eminent 19th century supernatural writer – Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu. It’s the 200th anniversary of Le Fanu’s birth this year, so it’s quite right the work of Dublin’s ‘Invisible Prince’ gets a proper celebration.

This issue comes with a postcard as a lovely extra – it’s a rare image of Le Fanu’s death mask (© Anna & Francis Dunlop).

By the way, Trinity College is organising a Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu Bicentenary Conference from 15-16 October for those of you who are inclined towards an academic analysis of his work.

Here’s the table of contents for issue 3 of The Green Book:

  • “Editor’s Note” – Brian J. Showers
  • “The Embodiment of Sinister Agencies: Le Fanu and the Ghost of a Hand” – Terri Neil
  • “Hybrids and Hyphenates: H.P. Lovecraft and the Irish” – Rob Brown
  • “Some Notes on Le Fanu’s Beatrice” – Philip A. Ellis and Jim Rockhill
  • “Towards an Irish Gothic: Part Three” – Albert Power
  • “Shepherding Le Fanu: Herbert van Thal and the Invisible Prince” – J.A. Mains

Reviews

  • Lesley Megahey’s Schalcken the Painter – Jim Rockhill
  • Scarecrow Press’s Two Volumes of Lord Dunsany Essays – Martin Andersson
  • Catherine Wynne’s Bram Stoker, Dracula and the Victorian Gothic Stage – David J. Skal
  • Big Telly Theatre Company’s Melmoth the Wanderer – Philip Orr
  • Bernice M. Murphy’s Rural Gothic – Emily Bourke
  • Lynda E. Rucker’s The Moon Will Look Strange – Maura McHugh
  • John Boyne’s This House is Haunted – Dan Studer

As you’ll see in this issue I’m reviewing Lynda E. Rucker’s début collection, The Moon Will Look Strange, which is one of the best first collections of supernatural stories I’ve had the pleasure to read.

The Moon Will Look Strange

Here’s a snippet of my praise for this fantastic volume of weird and distrubing tales:

Rucker writes the kind of effortless prose that reads easily, but is only created from careful, determined craft. Her stories describe conflicted, lost people, and dreadful situations you could never imagine, yet believe must have happened.

This is the mark of a superior storyteller, and points to Rucker as one of the most promising purveyors of the supernatural weird tale writing at the moment.

You’ll have to buy The Green Book if you wish to read my full 1,000-word review….

FYI, Brian is currently soliciting submissions for the next issue of The Green Bookdetails here.

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