I was gifted a copy of this wonderful book by the author whom I had the pleasure of meeting and eating with at dinner the other night. I had been to the Ulster Museum for a talk by the author Jeffrey Deavers. A night organized by David Torrance of the No Alibis Bookstore in Botanic Avenue. It was a lovely evening with the sun splitting the trees and the choice of venues was just great for a talk by the creator of Lincoln Rhyme. I was there by invitation of my boss John Mc Mahon who knows I always have an appetite for good food and good company. The evening was a sell out, loads of the authors new hardback The Kill Room were shifting and the craic around the dinner table afterwards was as they say up to ninety. We walked from the museum to Connors for a late evening meal. Afterwards we strolled to where John had parked his car, down in the holy Land. It was as I said a really lovely evening and the campus grounds around Queens University were balmy and oddly quiet. Just ambling along with these two fine mystery writers who had travelled so far to entertain their fans. They were obviously good friends who brought out the best in each other conversationally. Jeffrey's voice seemed deep and precise. John's danced for joy. John gave me a copy of his book refusing to personalize the signature as it would devalue the book in the event of his death. A Poe like modesty that endeared him all the more. Anyone who knows me will know that MR James is one of my favorite authors and antiquarian ghost stories one of my favorite genres. I am not keen on pastiche. I like authors to just go for it. To write as though they are the first and only authors to write in this vein. And that is how John Connolly allows this story to unfold. It is a one sitting read that demands an almost immediate reread. Just as I reread A Christmas Carol every December I now think I shall reread the Wanderer in Unknown Realms every...
..well,every time I feel like it.
Special mention must go to Emily Hall for her disturbing black and white plates that punctuate the text. They really are quite haunting. The product of some Ghostly Edwardian nursery.
My momento of a lovely evening is a book that gave me disturbing dreams.