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Seven Terrors by Selvedin Avdic
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Seven Terrors

by Selvedin Avdic

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121768,668 (4.75)1
2013 (1) 2015 (1) Bosnia (1) fiction (2) novel (1) to-read (2) ultb (1)

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bookshelves: impac-longlist, fantasy, gothic, balkan-root, war, sweden, published-2012, shortstory-shortstories-novellas, bosnia-and-herzegovina, tbr-busting-2014, mythology, paper-read, under-10-ratings, gangsters, ghosties-ghoulies, translation
Read from November 13, 2013 to January 08, 2014

From the description: After nine months of self-imposed isolation following his wife’s departure, the hero of Seven Terrors finally decides to face his loneliness and join the world once more. However, when the daughter of his old friend Alex appears in his flat one morning with the news that her father has disappeared, he realises that his life is again about to change. As the two search for clues in Alex’s war diary, unearthed in a library in Sweden, they come upon tales of unspeakable horror and mystery: meetings with ghosts, a town under siege, demonic brothers who ride on the wings of war, and many more things so dangerous – and so precious – that they can only be discussed by the dead.

As investigation into Alex’s disappearance continues, readers will be drawn further and further into a surreal world where rationality has vanished, evil spreads like a virus and not even love can offer an escape. While Charon, Hades’ mythical ferryman, can be found behind the wheel of a taxi and dead horses are seen flying across the sky, cracks begin to erode reality and people start to go missing. Here, amidst such chaos, our hero endeavours to cling to his sanity, doing his best to solve the riddle of Alex’s disappearance while attempting to save his own soul and bring love back into his life.

Opening: Whoever ends up reading this text will not be my choice, as I have no say in the matter. Maybe that's a good thing, because I've never managed to choose the best option in my life. So let chance decide and hope it doesn't bring me some insufferable cynic.

Street Fighting Man

I think I have just met the scariest twins in fiction: ladies and gentlemen may I present the flamed haired Pegasus brothers, Aldin and Albin.

A difficult story to describe however if you can imagine Pan's Labyrinth crossed with Kafkaesque war action then you should be half the way. At 129 pages this short story is dense, packs a Mohammed Ali punch and the ending chills.

Pages 130 - 149 are the endnotes, very enlightening, and I do urge you not to be tempted to peek earlier; don't miss that last heading...

4.5*

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  mimal | Jan 8, 2014 |
This is a story that starts off weird and gets weirder, but with the logic and clamminess of a bad dream. It's quite unlike anything I've read before, but it has all the consistency and force of something major and assured.
 
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Whoever ends up reading this text will not be my choice, as I have no say in the matter.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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After nine months of self-imposed isolation following his wife's departure, the hero of Seven Terrors finally decides to face his loneliness and join the world once more. However, when the daughter of his old friend Aleksa appears in his flat one morning with the news that her father has disappeared, he realises that his life is again about to change. As the two search for clues in Aleksa's war diary, unearthed in a library in Sweden, they come upon tales of unspeakable horror and mystery: meetings with ghosts, a town under siege, demonic brothers who ride on the wings of war, and many more things so dangerous - and so precious - that they can only be discussed by the dead.… (more)

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