Hodgson's tremendous great work has recently been graced by a number of spinoffs or sharecrops set in the same universe. Some of these have received a degree of critical acclaim. The most recent is James Stoddard's THE NIGHT LAND: A STORY RETOLD, which is not a separate and derivative fiction but rather an attempt to retell the original story in modern syntax and presumably to adapt it to modern sensibilities.
Stoddard prefixes his retelling with the following apologium:
"I began by rewriting the book, paragraph by paragraph, but soon discovered that Hodgson's prose did not hold up in a direct 'translation.' I grew bolder and began adding dialogue (Hodgson had none), character motivation, and even brief scenes not in the original volume, but necessary to support the logic of the story line. I was forced to name the main character, who Hodgson left nameless. I have divided the book into more chapters than in the original, breaking the action at various points to slow the relentless pace . . . "(my ellipses)
Does it work? Yes: it's an excellent story. But at the same time, it's not really a substitute for Hodgson's original book. Rather, it's a focusing or type of that book: one reader's response to the terrific mythic images and themes that swarm in Hodgson's clumsy, desperately urgent, phrasing. Here the Night Land, which was as universal and protean as nightmare, becomes hard and focused. We have the Watchers described even to their exact height in miles and feet; we learn the name and personal history of Hodgson's nameless voyager through Night; we hear dialog between him and the other inhabitants of the Redoubt; we have Nanni pictured well enough to paint.
Some of these fleshings of dream can not quite match with our own. For THE NIGHT LAND, Hodgson's original work, is half a dream, an onieromachic clash of archetypes in the dark rather than a brightly lit puppet-show of war or tragedy or even love. However, it is no insult to Stoddard's story to say that the most important result of reading it is to rekindle our appreciation of its source book and of the stylistic choices Hodgson made in his telling.