Publication date: April 2012
Page count: 304
Grisly Tales from Tumblewater
by Bruno Vincent (Author)
Grisly tales from Tumblewater is a collection of stories, tied together with an overarching metanarrative. The setting is a darkly comic town, at an undetermined, Victorian-esque point in history. The misery of the inhabitants’ lives is only lightened by the telling of horrific tales, which function as an acknowledged type of group catharsis. The main protagonist, Daniel Dorey, goes from student surgeon to collector of tales as he finds himself on the run from the police and the shadowy Caspian Prye, whilst also seeking to avoid the Slumgullion and the witch.
Tumblewater is a community where appearances are deceptive, and where the inhabitants live in fear of Caspian Prye, the owner of the wealth, the commodities, and justice within the town. Outlaws are literally forced underground, and magic is not unheard of.
The mystery at the book’s core will keep readers entranced, whilst the stories themselves stand alone as complete vignettes. They are as terrible as the title suggests and some are shocking, disturbing. There’s a lonely old clerk who finds and adopts a baby and struggles every day to save the child from disaster only to accidentally bake the infant in the oven, a clock maker who finds the secret of immortality only to recognise the horror in it, and a girl forced to swap bodies with a raven.
Comparisons with Poe, Dickens and James are justified. This is a well written and original book; the stories are horrific and vivid, and will entertain and thrill the more mature reader.
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