Bloody Baudelaire – by R.B. Russell
by R. B. Russell
(Ex Occidente Press 2009)
This is a stunning novella I’ve just been compelled to read in one sitting – compelled by a fear of its words changing before I got to them. It starts as a country house shenanigan where young people might say in a different book: “Anyone, for Tennis?”
Not that famous Monty Python sketch, well, maybe it is, in a sense.
No, it is something seriously decadent and Dorian Gray and Stephen Poliakoff and pre-Raphaelite … with Elizabeth-Bowen-esque nihilism of a fractured soul. The Tabula Rasa of love … and a rite of torture that unfolds so slowly in such a quick book, one is driven along by it. This whole force of onward fiction has a very clever ending. I believed every word.
I felt I wrote it. The book itself – as a physical object – struck me as one of those old French books whose pages you needed to uncut. But someone had done it already.
Very well done indeed. In two Acts.
All my real-time reviews: https://nullimmortalis.wordpress.com/2010/09/07/df-lewis-real-time-reviews/