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Sargasso

Robert Aickman.

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Anyone?

 

Cold Hand In Mine.

Dark Entries.

The Unsettled Dust.

The Wine-Dark Sea.

 

Four volumes of short stories by Mr. Aickman and I'm putting them in this section because they fall loosely under the heading 'Horror'. But they aren't quite that at all in my opinion. Of the 30-ish stories contained within these books, a couple are what you might term ghost stories and a few more are classic horror but the majority of tales can only be described as being completely and utterly bizarre. Think of the extreme oddness of the television series The League of Gentlemen cranked up a bit and you are getting close to just how strange some of these stories are. Without the comedy, of course.

 

Reece Shearsmith of The League of Gentlemen provides an introduction to one book and cites Robert Aickman as a major influence. Very British tales told in an off-kilter way that could only ever happen in the darkest parts of an imaginary Britain. That leafy suburb, that farmhouse, that seaside town. A peek beneath the veneer of normality into the dark underbelly of what we hope and pray cannot be real.

 

Highly recommended.

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