Monday, January 28, 2013

A Black Solitude

   I gotta tell you, I owe John Pelan and the folks at Cemetery Dance a big thanks for introducing me to the work of author H. Russell Wakefield. I went on quite a bit about his story The Red Lodge, which was featured in the CD collection The Century's Best Horror Fiction. Last night I read another of his stories called A Black Solitude and it was yet another amazingly creepy and well written ghost story. The thing about this one is it includes a trained ghost fighter, kind of like Carnacki or Jules de Grandin, except things don't go near as well for this fellow as those guys.
   The thing that amazes me about Wakefield is his ability to capture that "otherness" that one should encounter in a ghost story. You can't really understand his vengeful spirits. They aren't operating under the same rules as the living. Wakefield is also a master of the slow build-up, and boy when things go to hell, they go there fast and ugly.
   Anyway, this collection is The Best Ghost Stories of H. Russell Wakefield, and it's getting hard to come by in book form, however there are plenty of affordable ebooks of Wakefield's stories. Well worth your time if you appreciate a really scary tale of the classic type. Highly recommended.


Keith said...

That was the first volume of Wakefield's stories I ever owned. Still have it.

Charles R. Rutledge said...

It's a great collection. I'll be hanging on to mine as well.