Extract from my review of IN THE LAND OF TIME by Lord Dunsany: HERE
Tag Archives: marcel proust
Image by Tony Lovell (2011)
My reading-lifetime’s Hall of Fame in no particular order:
Charles Dickens, Christopher Priest, AS Byatt, Enid Blyton, May Sinclair, HP Lovecraft, Barbara Vine, Reggie Oliver, Anita Brookner, WG Sebald, Jeremy Reed, Ian McEwan, Elizabeth Bowen, Stephen King, Oliver Onions, Marcel Proust, Salman Rushdie, Glen Hirshberg, Paul Auster, Mark Valentine, John Fowles, Edgar Allan Poe, John Cowper Powys, Lord Dunsany, Algernon Blackwood, Jack Vance, Philip K Dick, Jeff VanderMeer, Samuel R Delany, Anthony Burgess, Susanna Clarke, Rhys Hughes, Lawrence Durrell, MR James, Robert Aickman, Sarban, Ramsey Campbell, Thomas Ligotti, Tommaso Landolfi, Kazuo Ishiguro, Quentin S. Crisp.
This is a list including writers I once considered in my Hall of Fame but now rarely read, and new writers whose works I read quite a lot and have included in my Hall of Fame fairly recently and variations upon that, but all have been major reading experiences some time in my life. Apologies to those I’ve inadvertently omitted because of my semi-Proustian memory.
I have just re-read Nemonymous Night (Chômu Press, June 2011) in its full beautiful regalia as a book. And I wonder if it is a metaphorical suicide-bomb now planted on my bookshelf, knowing how close I am to my bookshelf…
More thoughtfully perhaps, having indeed just re-read this my only published novel, I deem it the worthy culmination of a lifetime tussling with fiction. I shall continue to deem it thus, I feel, even if the critical reaction to it is negative, but I certainly trust that most of its readers will gain value from the adventurous Jules Verne-ian plot together with its apocalyptic and acquired accoutrements.
Nemonymous Night, the Last Balcony story collection and the Weirdtongue novella are the only works of mine I would like to remain in existence after I’ve gone into my own nemonymous night. But, obviously, I have no say in what is kept and what is not. And the earth may vanish before I do.
Please forgive any sign of pretentiousness that may be discovered in this statement. And sincere thanks to the publisher of Nemonymous Night.
The two quotes inside the book – the words from an Elizabeth Bowen story were discovered after completion and acceptance of the novel – and the ‘Carcosa’ words from Karl Edward Wagner were published in the mid-1990s, and the novel mentions a ‘lethal chamber’ and an anchovy!