Rather than horror these are better described as strange or eerie stories. There is not a stinker in the entire thing. These are best savored slowly but nevertheless I found myself just racing through the book I enjoyed them so much. Russell's horror is not the horror of Stephen King or Richard Laymon; not the horror of mayhem and grue. The stories are no less disturbing but more in the quiet way of reality abruptly twisting; think of a touch of surrealism coming into your day.
The author's prose is literate and interesting.
This is the way M. James would write strange stories if he were alive today. You couldn't do better than to read these by firelight this winter season. Oct 29, Andy rated it it was amazing.
This is one of the few books I started reading "for the hell of it" and end up being so impressed I give it five stars. This really impressed me. Thomas Ligotti praised these stories as having a "haunting melancholy," and I thought that was a perfect way of putting it. I find it ironic that Ligotti is not a fan of Robert Aickman, yet these excellent stories brought his work to mind more often than anyone else I can think of. Certainly nothing here feels like pastiche, and Russell has his own spin This is one of the few books I started reading "for the hell of it" and end up being so impressed I give it five stars.
Certainly nothing here feels like pastiche, and Russell has his own spin on the Aickmanesque atmosphere, but I was very pleased to read a collection of stories that reminded me of Aickman's work. I liked the unpredictability of these stories, and was impressed by their consistent quality throughout.
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Russell's stories are subtle and unsettling. These are stories that haunt, lingering in the mind long after they're read, and leaving many questions unanswered. We catch glimpses which point toward implications, often horrific, but we're never entirely certain. Literary Remains - Literary indeed, this story really made me look forward to reading the rest of the book. It's a ghost story with a really subtle feel to it, it reminds me of the very best psychological ghost stories like Onions "The Beckoning Fair One," or Walter de la Mare's best ghost stories.
A girl helping her employer sort out the books of a recently-deceased ghost story author finds herself accosted by an unseen force. I would have liked things to end up less open-ended, yet this story really works as it is. An art student becomes obsessed with a professors' model, who only models late at night.
Project MUSE - Literary Remains
Llanfihangel - Goodness gracious what a great story, really loved the mood of it and it has this one perfectly-pitched scare that was very effective. One of my favorites in the collection. A man hears about an old girlfriend from school who is in distress and wants to help her, but isn't sure he can trust the strange man who tells him about her. Una Furtiva Lagrima - Another haunting story, ending ambiguously on a crescendo.
A man visits the mistress of his deceased father and uncovers a dark secret of the past. Another Country - I really like the unpredictability of this collection. In this one there is a great sense of place, and the feeling of being lost in another country. A representative from a publisher goes to see an author to celebrate his recently published book, but he discovers him living in squalor and disappointment.
Loup-Garou - I wouldn't really expect the concept for this story to work if you told it to me, but it does work, quite well in fact. I can never tell exactly where Russell is going with these stories, and this one really crept up on me. A man sees a film that seems to reflect scenes from his own life, and he tries to track it down years later. Blue Glow - This is the longest story here, it has a good sense of unease, especially as to things which one gets too easily in life.
Catalog Record: The literary remains of Samuel Taylor Coleridge | Hathi Trust Digital Library
We're wondering where the string is attached. This story is a real page-turner, but I'm not sure what the end meant, or if it had a definite meaning at all. A recently-divorced man starting life over moves into the apartment of a mysterious and rich playboy, and taking on his identity. A Revelation - This story was among my favorites, very Aickman-esque. I love the setting and the building tension, and such a weird, extremely creepy ending. A man who works for the government inspecting houses comes across a very strange secret in an old woman's attic.
Asphodel - A pretty good story, not among my favorites, but still enjoys the company of the others. It has a far less ambiguous ending than most here. A publisher gets a book from a strange man who has written a very strange book, which sells far better than they imagine. This story is pretty deep in a lot of ways, and the pacing and building of tension was handled perfectly. A group of friends go on a retreat to a cottage in the country, when two of the group seek to engage in an adulterous relationship at night they always find themselves in strange areas of the house which don't exist by day.
Feb 29, Riju Ganguly rated it it was amazing. Horror, as a genre, is like a country-fair. But at times you would come across such elegant and charming pieces that would move you like never before. The stories in this collection are: I am unable to classify this story, but it was shocking, and a superb read. Feel free to make up your mind, although I am unable to decide anything.
But what a story…….! You have to read this story to understand what I am raving about, but believe me, you would be chilled to the core after you have read it. Russell is, and how he can alter an entire sub-genre within horror into something different.
It dissatisfied me, since I was reading it like a mystery which it is , and it ended rather suddenly. Take your pick, but after reading this jaw-droppingly fresh story, you would be stunned. Where They Cannot Be Seen: The perfect story to round up this delightfully horrifying collection. I found these stories elegant, charming, compact, and deliciously ambiguous. Aug 02, Jason Rolfe rated it really liked it.
Russell is masterfully subtle, a talent showcased nicely by this collection. Sep 15, Robert rated it it was amazing. Damian Lawrence rated it really liked it Oct 02, How can a culture estranged from its vanishing traditions come to terms with its past? How can a culture, severed from its roots and alienated from the foreign conventions it appropriates, conceptualize its own present and future? His creative writings—which imitate, adapt, and parody traditional literary conventions—represent and mirror the trauma of cultural disintegration, in content and in form. His contradictory, uncertain, and at times bizarrely incoherent narratives refuse to conform to conventional modes of meaning making or teleological notions of history, opening up imaginative possibilities for comprehending the past and present without necessarily reifying them.
Like a solitary wanderer keeping vigil at the site of destruction, he sifts through the debris, composing epitaphs to mark both the presence and absence of that which has gone before and will soon come to pass.
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For in the rubble of what remains, he recovered precious gems of illumination through which to assess, critique, and transform the moment of the present. Literary Remains will appeal to a wide audience of students and scholars interested in Lu Xun, modern China, cultural studies, and world literature. Title Page, Copyright Page pp. History, or What Remains in the Present pp. Re-membering the Past pp. The Limits of Subjectivity: Death, Trauma, and the Refusal to Mourn pp.
The Illegitimate Preface pp. Un Faithful Biographers pp. New Culture through the Prism of Tradition pp.