Decay Inevitable Paperback – 7 Sep 2009
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An impressive tour-de-force that ranges from grimy magic realism to outright horror. - SFX on 'London Revenant' Rivals the nastiest imagery of Edgar Allan Poe. - Maxim on 'The Unblemished'
About the Author
Conrad Williams was born in Cheshire in 1969. He is the author of three novels, four novellas and a collection of his best short fiction. His most recent book, One, won the British Fantasy Society Award for Best Novel; previous books have earned him the International Horror Guild Award and the Littlewood Arc Prize. www.conradwilliams.com
Top Customer Reviews
The basic story (if you can call it that) runs along the following lines:
Policeman, bored of being a policeman, finally quits his job after failing to stop a young girl being killed. He decides to go back to his home town and carries on trying to solve the mystery of why the girl was killed by joining the people he believes are responsible. During this time he meets a childhood friend and maybe they start dating, it's not very clear.
Meanwhile, in London, a man's pregnant wife is killed and the unborn child is turned into a demon killing machine with powers akin to that of the T1000; in that when she kills someone she absorbs them and can take on their personality and appearance. This demon then goes on the hunt for the husband, who flees north along with his ex girlfriend (or maybe ex wife I lost track) and a little girl they happen to pick up on the way.
As expected the two stories eventually meet up, but not until very near the end, by which point you don't really care. There's something along the way about a dream world where the people are closest to being dead and someone wants to control it, and don't forget a pack of rapist, killer, dancing gypsies, who don't seem to have any reason to be in the book other than to waste a few chapters.
The end leaves you wondering if the journey was actually worth it all.Read more ›
I was given this book by a friend to read to see if I could make any sense of it. I couldn't.
it flits from a policeman who hated being a policeman then spends the rest of the book trying to investigate who had killed this woman in the beginning. almost police like. *(spoiler)* then when he find out who it was he couldn't give two figs.
by all means read this book but be ready to re-read pages and a lot of head scratching.
It's visceral, make no mistake, and evokes vintage Clive Barker, but Williams lacks Barker's lyricism, his ability to make his evocation of the dream world more potent than those scenes set in the real world. On the other hand, Williams is superb at conveying the `here and now', the grit and grind of urban life. By comparison, his `other world' appears rendered in broad strokes. Good stuff - if it had been published in the early nineties, although even then it lacks the scope and ambition of 'The Secret of Anatomy' (1994) by Mark Morris. Structure wise, it is too similar to Williams's own 'The Unblemished' (2006) whilst lacking that novel's superior characterisation. And it's not a patch on the tightly focused precision of Williams's other novel from last year, 'One'. Everything is there, you know? Only, it just doesn't quite gel: a case of the parts being better than the whole, although for the meagre price of a mass market paperback it's worth it for that alone.
All in all, a cracking weekend read whose Barker-esque moments will spell readers over until Clive gets around to releasing 'The Scarlet Gospels' and the third Abarat book. This is Williams's first release from Solaris, only - why is the author's name rendered in tiny type-face on the cover?!Read more ›
The other main character is a man called Will, who's child is taken over [in the womb] by an entity called Cheke, who absorbs victims as she grows and learns. This demon has been conjured up by someone for some purpose, though I'm still unclear as to why.
Perhaps this book is leagues ahead of me; I found the writing style of this book...not easy to read. However, books aren't always meant to be. I bought it mainly because the other books presented by Solaris have been enjoyable (Justin Gustainis's efforts for one). But this one - not my cup of tea, I'm afraid to say. It was hard to finish the thing, and it tailed off to an ending that was more oh, than oh!
Maybe if you can get a cheap deal, or nip to the library? Or take mine?