Monday, 29 October 2018

'Wyrd'



The third story in Uncertainties III is very different from either tale that precedes it. Adam L. G. Nevill's approach is radical in that it offers no protagonist, no dialogue, no characterisation at all. Instead it gives the reader a drone's eye view of a coastal landscape, before zeroing in on a site where Something has Happened. A circle of tents surrounds mysterious stone rings. And outside the tents, a circle of animal sacrifices. 
'These are lambs. Black lambs. Slaughtered and arranged in a circle, like the symbols on some strange clock...'
It is not just the lambs that were sacrificed. Gradually a variation on a familiar theme becomes apparent, as Neville's careful prose exposes just enough of the scene. 'Wyrd' is a tour-de-force, showing that a horror story can be dynamic without depicting action, disturbing without showing any explicit violence. 
So, another winner, which bodes well for the rest of the tales selected by Lynda Rucker in what is - surprisingly enough - her first anthology. 



No comments: