Sunday, 2 December 2012
115/111 - The Haunted Book by Jeremy Dyson
I've had this book on my Amazon wishlist for a while now and decided to go for it on a whim the other day. It's a really really interesting book and it did a great job of tricking me!
It first starts off with the premise that Jeremy has been asked by a small-time journalist to help him put together a book of true ghost stories from across the British Isles. In order to get a feel for the different stories he decides to go and visit each place to see what they're like and to pick up on the atmosphere. After a few stories, the book then seems to transform into another book from the past, and then again and again. So at first what appeared to be a factual book actually turns out to be fiction! The effect of going deeper and deeper into the book ends up being quite creepy as you go further and further into the past. Each time the book changes, the appearance also changes - for example the font, and the colour of the pages become more aged-looking. Eventually when you reach the end of the book, the pages have gotten darker and darker and you are sort of supposed to feel lost in the book. The pages are totally black and the text is white, and this disembodied voice talks you out of the book,NAND each page becomes lighter and lighter again until the pages are white and blank. Pretty surreal.
The stories themselves were pretty good, there were some fairly creepy ones in there. I think my favourite was probably the story with the guy who goes sailing round the world alone and then goes a little stir crazy on his boat. I also liked the one about the students who go to clean out an underground bunker, and the one with the stone circle. Those ones I probably enjoyed the most because they reminded me of some Stephen King short stories.
All in all, good book.