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The Magdalena Curse Paperback – 15 Apr 2010

2.9 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder Paperbacks; 328 edition (15 April 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340980990
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340980996
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 2.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 831,630 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

A treasure trove of dark dreams and sinister sorcery (The Times on THE MAGDALENA CURSE)

The novel is modern Gothic in tone, but Cottam's skill as a writer of paranormal chillers gives it a rich varnish of literary class (Saga on THE MAGDALENA CURSE)

This beautifully written, imaginative novel is a tense and terrifying chapter in the ongoing battle between good and evil. (Good Book Guide)

This is a high-class supernatural thriller in which ordinary people stumble into the path of terrifying evil - I was sad to leave the characters when I'd finished. (Soul&Spirit)

F.G. Cottam has crafted a superb and tautly told tale . . . A perfect ghost story (The Times on DARK ECHO)

'F.G. Cottam's complex, tautly atmospheric thriller delivers plenty of chills . . . the perfect dark winter night yarn' (Daily Mail on DARK ECHO)

A terrifying encounter with manifest evil . . . chilling novel . . . His adrenaline-charged prose is drawn tight with suspense (James Urquhart, Financial Times on THE HOUSE OF LOST SOULS)

Book Description

A boy doomed by a prophecy, a father who will risk anything to save him, an epic confrontation between good and evil by the highly praised author of DARK ECHO

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
F.G.Cottam is a hugely talented writer, and 'House of Lost Souls' was one of the scariest horror novels that I've read over the last decade. For this reason, out of a sense of loyalty, I struggled to the end of this increasingly disappointing book, with its ghastly gung-ho hero (sorry, I didn't warm to Mark Hunter at all), its turgid passages of pointless description and unconvincing dialogue, gruesome moments that made me laugh out loud for all the wrong reasons, to its "with one bound we were all free" conclusion. But I don't blame the author, who has some great ideas in this book, (although they need developing), I blame the publishers, who have rushed this book out before it was ready. With another year's work, and some hard editing, particularly where the narrative structure is concerned, (why on earth, for example, does Mark go all the way to the Tyrol, and in a separate incident all the way to London, to confront the sorceress, only to achieve zilch and then come home again?) this could have been a really good book.
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Format: Paperback
Ok, I never thought it was going to be a serious literary classic. And it did started well. Adam Hunter, aged 10, is suffering from nightmares, and his father Mark enlists the help of the local doctor, Elizabeth Bancroft, to treat him. But Mark knows that the real source of his son's affliction is a curse he incurred on a failed mission a decade back in his SAS career. As we flash back to the origins of the curse, the horror has a silly edge from a start - zombie dogs and self-mutilation which seemed to me anatomically unlikely, if not impossible. But mixed with the hardness of the soldiers and the rationality of military language, it had a creepy edge. I'll admit to sleeping with the hall light on the night I started reading.

But after that, the silliness quota was upped significantly. I think Mr Cottam was under the impression that the more 'horror' elements you include in a novel, the scarier it will be. So, in addition to zombie dogs, we end up with witches, another type of zombie (headless), werewolves, and Nazis. Nazi werewolves, in fact. I can only think that the omission of vampires was a careless oversight.

Even after all that, I still wanted to know how it would all end: the plot had gripped me. It ended rushed, unsatisfying, with more loose ends than a charity shop jumper. I won't spoil the ending for you: it does that for itself. I'll just say that after all the build up, it was all too easy for the main characters to resolve. Except that there were a lot of things they didn't resolve, which would have left me a gibbering wreck of fear (unable to sleep with or without the light on), but apparently weren't troubling enough to prevent the protagonists from living happily ever after.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the third f g cottam book i read and the best so far.Really compelling story and a very unusual twist on the theme of innocent woman persecuted by puritans because she did not comply to woman doormat stereotype and a twist that gives a lift to the story and makes you want to know what the descendant of the said witch will do to help her friends. Love both of the villains in the book and could not put book down
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Format: Paperback
I've become a serial reader of Cottam's brand of horror, despite it not really being a genre I especially enjoy.
His first book, The House of lost Souls was very scary, not something to be read either on your own or late at night. His second novel Dark Echo was more of the same but a little less creepy, the constant threat of something awful lurking rather than the actual presence of evil.
This new book is more of a roller coaster ride thriller. The characters are well drawn and believable, and the book rattles along through a series of set piece action sequences.
Highly enjoyable, but different in tone from his first two novels.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I love all of FG Cottam's writing that I have read so far but I think that this has been my favourite. The story itself is really clever and characters are particularly well drawn. I would recommend it to anyone who loves good quality supernatural themes.
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Format: Paperback
I have greatly enjoyed F G Cottam's menacing and descriptive tales of the supernatural. The first four that I read were extremely competent examples of the horror genre but were able to transcend the label of horror fiction due to their superb descriptions of locations, the gradual build-up of suspense, the interesting and usually believable characters and the epilogue at the end of each book which explained what happened after the denouement of the tale.
This book which was published in 2009 is not of the high standard of Cottam's other work; the tale is a mish-mash of contrived coincidences and far too much is unexplained which is not an accusation that could be levelled at his previous books.
The SAS-type hero is a stereotype, the locations are not described to the same standard as the wonderful Lambeth locales are in other books and the only times that the story comes to life are in the snowy scenes in Scotland where one is instantly transported as the scenery is so clearly related.
Too much does not add-up. South London appears to be a war-zone which is never satisfactorily explained or resolved although there is vague mention of a Coalition Government (which obviously predated the actual one!), a character who is a healer is able to 'think' a vicious dog a distance of many miles away and bury it two metres down under a shingle beach - all by the power of thought, and the main villainess and her principal adversary are caricatures who may be human but could equally be alien or some sort of Highlander character who are almost immortal and can survive being shot pointblank in the head in an assassination technique.
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