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Voice of our Shadow (FANTASY MASTERWORKS) [Paperback]

Jonathan Carroll
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Book Description

10 Jan 2002 FANTASY MASTERWORKS (Book 25)

For Joe Lennox, successful young writer, Vienna provides a refuge from the tragedy of his brother¿s death, until he starts up a friendship with the eccentric India Tate and her magician husband Paul. Gradually Joe falls in love with India, but Paul finds out ¿ before he suddenly drops dread.

And now Joe has two deaths on his conscience and another voice calling from beyond the grave . . .

Product details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Gollancz; New edition edition (10 Jan 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0575073675
  • ISBN-13: 978-0575073678
  • Product Dimensions: 1.6 x 12.9 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 81,794 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Book Description


About the Author

Jonathan Carroll was born in America but has lived most of his adult life in Vienna. His prizewinning novels have been translated into 17 languages.

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At night here I often dream of my parents. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superbly Scary 13 Jan 2002
The Gollancz Fantasy Masterworks series kicks off 2002 with Jonathan Carroll's follow-up novel to The Land of Laughs (Masterworks No.9). If your idea of fantasy reaches no further than a few goblins, elves and sword-wielding barbarians then you may be wondering why this contemporary novel of revenge from beyond the grave (or is it? Answers on a postcard please.) has been included in Gollancz's fine series. Fortunately for us, it would seem as if this publisher is aiming to ambrace as broad a range of classic fantasy as possible in this series of reprints, and that can only be a good thing. Essentially, if you thought that his first novel was a masterpiece (as I did), then you're going to be similarly blown away with this heady melange of jealousy, eroticism, adultery and hauntings. Also as in Land of Laughs, be prepared for the last couple of pages to give you a shocking jolt, leaving you with a tale which stays with you long after you've read the last of its 190 pages. Proof that novels don't always need to be 600 pages long to leave a lasting impression. If you're a fan of dark fantasy then buy it to treat yourself, and to encourage the people at Gollancz to continue with their sterling work
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Coming of age 2 Feb 2004
I only read this novel as it was in the Fantasy Masterworks series. As such, when I was halfway through, I was wondering why it was there. The novel itself was interesting - a well penned story of a man growing up after a childhood trauma in which he is involved in his older, bullying brothers death. This leads to his escaping from America and fleeing his past to start a new life in Vienna. There he meets a couple, and falls in love with the married woman.
Up to that point the story is fairly standard - though the characters are well drawn and the settings deftly described. Then the book twists and the supernatural begins to appear. Nothing gross or over the top - just a subtle infusion as our percetion is slowly skewed from the normal to the paranormal. As the novel continues, the supernatural plays a background role - more background than expected, but effective never the less, untilthe quite stunning climax.
A superbly crafted novel. Well written, characters well drawn and well crafted.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars master storyteller at work 11 Jun 2004
The world is divided into those that know JC's work and those that don't. He is a master story teller of the old school. You can imagine hearing his tales around an atmospheric midnight campfire in the woods. There's a real humanity to his characters, and his story lines always surprise and move. Voice of Our Shadow is one of the more evocative of his books right up there with Outside the Dog Museum, and After Silence. Read this, read them all!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Subtle fantasy 30 Sep 2007
Voice of Our Shadow is the story of Joe Lennox. As a kid, he kills his delinquent brother, kind of accidentally, but manages to suppress the guilt. He turns his brother's story into a short story. The story is made into a play, making enough money for Joe so he can move to Vienna to live a life as a writer.

In Vienna, he learns to love the city, meets some friend and finds love - but unfortunately in a wrong place, with a wrong person. Soon Joe has another death on his conscience. A nightmare begins, as the fantastical elements of this story come to life. The story has elements of horror and supernatural.

Jonathan Carroll has written a beautiful and fast-moving book. It's not my favourite of his work, but even a weaker Carroll book is still a good one. Worth reading, but don't start with this is you're new to the world of Jonathan Carroll.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Succinct, creepy, insightful 31 Jan 2003
This is a wonderfully original and understated novel: a coming-of-age story with a mystery at its heart, embellished with fantasy elements that become stronger and more integral as the book heads to its conclusion. Unlike much fantasy writing these days, there's no unnecessary padding here; rather, you're left wanting more.
The setting, Vienna, is evoked with a nicely economic style, while the (few) characters come to life naturally through their words and actions. The creeping unease builds gradually, and is never overdone - and the ending packs a considerable punch. Fabulous. You can read it in an evening - go on!
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Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was prepared to write a review for this book which would be seriously glowing and champion it as superior to the other book of his which I read and reviewed, The Land of Laughs.

However, like that other book this is compelling throughout but with a flat finish, almost like the author simply grew tired of writing and opted for the most predictable adn disappointingly formulaic finish.

It is such a shame because the style and pace is brilliant, the book is littered with observations of everyday life, the everyday ordinary is made extraordinary by being brought into sharp focus. This really does have the effect of priming the reader for a big finsih which does not arrive.

There are fantasy aspects, woven brilliantly into the narrative in a manner not many authors can achieve which makes the supernatural appear more plausible but ultimately I was left thinking whether or not this book is fantasy at all or a kind of psychological novel.

There is room for reflection, even discussion, of whether or not this or that plot twist or development is a sign of burgeoning madness or ghosts and haunting which I know many people think is the mark of a great book but I am not convinced myself. Carroll's clearly got great talent and it sort of feels like he prepares the reader for a big finish which doesnt arrive on schedule (something I thought was wrong with Land of Laughs too).

So I can recommend this book but I do think that anyone reading it is likely to feel let down by how it ends.
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