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Glyphotech and Other Macabre Processes by…

Glyphotech and Other Macabre Processes

by Mark Samuels

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Mark Samuels is basically the 'Thomas Ligotti' of Britain (not just my opinion). He generally writes somewhat abstract horror within an urban an contemporary setting. GLYPHOTECH collects 11 horror tales. As usual, Mr. Samuels did not disappoint. This was perhaps one of the best horror collections I've read in a year or two. Stories like "Patient 704" had imagery that was so well-crafted and subtly eerie, that I was thoroughly "creeped" -- not an easy task.

Another tale, "The Sentinels", a story about things living down in the abandoned labyrinthine tube tunnels beneath London, had me feeling claustrophobic and nearly afraid to turn out the light! Bravo, Mr. Samuels.

My only complaints, and these are petty and few, are: firstly, no artwork to speak of save the jacket cover -- a few black and white illustrations would have been nice, especially for a book priced at $38. Secondly, some of the stories were obviously written for genre enthusiasts. While I do enjoy and in-joke here and there, these tongue-in-cheek references and allusions tended to somewhat distracting for me. I could almost picture the author giving a, "wink, wink".

One thing that impressed me -- totally unexpected: *spoiler alert* in one of the stories, Samuels introduces the reader to a fictional horror writer, a one Edward Bertrand (obviously modeled after Thomas Ligotti). He gives a back story of Bertrand's career, a synopsis of a few of his stories, and of course, supplies a grisly demise. What a treat it was to turn to the next story in the collection to see that the story was written by none-other than Edward Bertrand! It was even one the stories alluded to in the previous story, and written in a totally different style than Samuels' other efforts -- a nice reality-bending technique. Clever. ( )
1 vote Dead_Dreamer | Jan 8, 2010 |
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