Top positive review
10 people found this helpful
Good book, shame about the typos
on 22 February 2008
Arthur Machen is known mostly for his horror writing, but this book, often said to be his masterpiece, is a partly autobiographical tale of Lucien Taylor, a young would-be writer who lives a solitary life and seeks release in his work. There are compelling descriptions of Lucien's feverish attempts to attain Art, through a Rimbaudian disarrangement of the senses, and of his frequent bouts of despair over his lack of progress. There are also vivid descriptions of the visions he experiences on his excursions to the ruins of a Roman fort near his home, which are reminiscent of Machen's horror writing. This is an intense and stimulating book, and an interesting insight into how Machen came to create the nightmarish visions of his horror stories. One small complaint is the disproportionately large number of typos in this Kessinger edition of this relatively short book.