I would have posted this several days ago, but I was in the middle of moving. New John C. Wright book out! It is a Kindle download, 313 pages (Kindle estimate of print equivalent) and $4.99 – which I consider a steal.
Because of my moving this week I have not had time to either download yet alone read it yet (and I have to finish Lafferty’s PAST MASTER which has been slow going because… you guessed it – that great fun we call moving!). It consists of 4 novellas taking place in the dark fantasy world of William Hope Hodgson’s 1912 dark fantasy THE NIGHT LAND.
Sadly I have not read that either. But I did read one of Wright’s novellas that comprises this volume, SILENCE OF THE NIGHT, a few years back and it was excellent. Dark, morose, and hopelessly depressing, but done really well. At least that is the way I remember it, I have changed much of my philosophy since then, but the excellent part I remember well. Can’t wait to have the whole collection.
Now go download it so this man can get rich writing, quit his day job, and spend all day writing me more stories! Do it now!
I, as usual, have a plate of reading that is spilling over. On the way as I speak is R.A. Lafferty’s Fourth Mansions. Here is the cover of the edition I bought.
Yep, that appears to be a giant frog-like being (and you can see all the towers or spires or whatever have such creatures atop them) with beaming green eyes and all against the backdrop of a setting sky (or dawning) or a sky afire.
Funny thing about the cover (of course having not read it yet) is the book is based on St. Teresa of Avila’s The Interior Castle.
Here is a basic explanation of St. Teresa’s book given to me by a reader that relates to Lafferty’s book:
“Fourth Mansions,” what a nice title. Here is a little hint on the original meaning: the Fourth Mansions are the first spiritual night, the night of the senses, when the soul walks in pure faith without the comfort of perceptible graces often bestowed on beginners. It prepares the soul for the following stage, which is the mystic engagement and union of the will to Christ the Groom. The Third and Fourth Mansions are then the dwellings of most faithful Christians; the subsequent are the province of saints.
Given this I wonder just how much Lafferty lunacy is in this book based on the frog-things on Lafferty’s cover. Of course not all covers directly relate to what is inside. But, if you have ever read him, it is not too great an assumption to suppose the frog-things are there. Lafferty usually has deep Catholic underpinnings in his fiction, but they are buried deep. It is not like Lewis or Chesterton whose religious allegories practically come out and slap you across the cheek.
Then again another cover for FOURTH MANSIONS looks like this:
Who knows? Maybe both covers reflect what is in the book. You just never know where a theme of his is going to go.
And don’t worry, I’ll give a report on how poor Sir Thomas More fared as ruler of Golden Astrobe in PAST MASTER and if he ended up still loving his Utopia come to life. Now there is a strange book.