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The Port-Wine Stain (The American Novels) by…
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The Port-Wine Stain (The American Novels) (2016)

by Norman Lock

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I liked this book, but I didn't like it quite as much as other books by Lock. It's written in the style of Edgar Allen Poe and the protagonist is a doctor who is living in the 1880s and telling about times that he spent with Poe when Poe was still alive. It is an entertaining send-up of Poe, but it isn't as thought provoking as some of Lock's other works. ( )
  fuzzy_patters | Sep 5, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I received my copy of The Port-Wine Stain from the publisher, through Library Thing's Early Reviewer program.

This one disappointed me. I thought it started well, but after a strong beginning, nothing much actually happened until very late in the narrative. I wasn't really expecting a lot of action, but even so, the story seemed to stagnate very early.

I did enjoy the writing style - not a downright copy of E.A. Poe's, but pleasantly similar. For me, though, the problem was too much style and not enough substance, I'm afraid. ( )
  jlshall | Sep 23, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I have mixed emotions about "The Port-Wine Stain." I typically love Victorian fiction, stories set in that time frame, etc., so I thought this would be very appealing to me. I found it difficult to get into, and I couldn't seem to bond with the main character, Edward Fenzil. Basically it is a story of him subcoming to sadness after meeting and befriending Edgar Allan Poe.

The prose is excellent. The story just didn't grab me. ( )
  maryintexas39 | Aug 9, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I was so torn about this book, but in the end I was disappointed.
I didn't come into the text with any clear agenda - just a fiction read that would take me away from reality.
I couldn't finish it.
It was difficult to get started in the text. I felt I jumped into a conversation already started and had difficulty catching up. At the same time, I was eagerly awaiting the plot to progress forward; however, I just couldn't get into it. Whenever I have that feeling, I endeavor to read to page 100 and give it a true try; however, I couldn't this time. I couldn't get into the thread that continues the book along - page after page. After deciding to stop, I quickly read through the rest of the book to see if it got better and I was disappointed.
Not the book for me. ( )
  brieanne.allen | Jul 15, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
RATING: ★★★★☆/ 4.5 mesmerizing stars.

REVIEW: This book just reminded me why I love reading. It was a completely unexpected story with language that speaks to the greats and rhythm that speaks to the soul.

The entire book is essentially a monologue. In fact, as I was reading it, I started staging it in my mind. I could see the aged thespian on stage, speaking to the audience as if we were the unheard recipient of Fenzil's tale. It was magnetic. The cadence was perfect. The story builds slowly and you soon lose yourself in the book. I didn't want to put it down and break the spell that the words had woven. Therefore, I let myself be captured and read till the book came to a perfect end.

Now if you're imagining or expecting a new age mimic of Edgar Allan Poe, then you would be disappointed or more accurately, you're wrong to make the comparison in the first place. Because, while The Port-Wine Stain features Poe and has a dark Gothic undertone, it never endeavored to be a Poe-like tale. It is it's own book with it's own writer and deserves to be read without that preconception. That being said, I do think that it would appeal to Poe fans, as well those who love to discover great literature.

I highly recommend. ( )
  mashiaraqcs | Jul 6, 2016 |
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In his third book of The American Novels series, Norman Lock recounts the story of a young Philadelphian, Edward Fenzil, who, in the winter of 1844, falls under the sway of two luminaries of the nineteenth-century grotesque imagination: Thomas Dent M?utter, a surgeon and collector of medical "curiosities," and Edgar Allan Poe. As Fenzil struggles against the powerful wills that would usurp his identity, including that of his own malevolent doppelg?anger, he loses his mind and his story to another. -- Amazon.com… (more)

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