Tag Archives: susanna clarke

My reading-lifetime’s Hall of Fame

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.

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On the Side of the Angels – Marston Moor

Extract below from my Real-Time Review of Ron Weighell’s Tarshishim.
The Battle between – Angels and Demons, Real Books and Ebooks.
Happy New Year!
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On the Side of the Angels
 
“In fifteen sixty six, when Suleiman’s Sorceror called up demons to fight alongside the Ottoman army, an Angelic Host led by the Archangel Gabriel was summoned to oppose them.”
 
Felicitously, amid the book’s dutifulness towards its own Angelic thread, there is much synergy not only with my own long-term definition of ‘magic fiction’ as a real power in human affairs but also with the use made of it in warfare as described by the masterpiece ‘Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell’ in the name of Susanna Clarke. Also, arguably, a textual hint here of the internet as part of these processes, which my real-time reviewing also taps into, I suggest. “I take it you are not well read in the works of the master, Edgar Allan Poe? I thought not. It was his belief that if you wish to hide something, the best place is in full view.” This book is fast becoming, in full public view, an important part of my life, retrocausally as well as linearly forward in time. Remarkably, it mentions in this section today “Marston Moor” as one of the battles where “Beings” were sent, i.e. a battle which, synchronously, only yesterday was mentioned independently to me on a semi-public internet forum (here) as being a battle that (with right or wrong on my side, angels or demons?) I am currently fighting on behalf of real books against ebooks. (31 Dec 11 – four hours later)

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