What is this? Two blogs in one day!!!
I have heard the name Thomas Ligotti mentioned many times. He is a writer whom I know of but have never read anything by. I asked a friend where to start and he kindly pointed me in the direction of Songs of a Dead Dreamer and Grimscribe. I have already blown the book budget for February so I visited my local library and picked up a paperback copy.
I avoided the Foreword by Jeff Vandermeer in my eagerness to get stuck in. And to be honest I often find forewords to be a little self-indulgent and boring. My preconceptions as to the Ligotti style were well wide of the mark. I had envisioned the first story to be difficult to read by using a disjointed style, depressing, nihilistic and with no real flow. I was right with it being nihilistic. It is dark, moody, hopeless, atmospheric but wonderfully written. Ligotti has a wonderful way with how he uses figurative language. Something I feel many modern horror writers do not do nearly enough in this respect and instead go for shock value. The first story: The Frolic is simple in it’s execution, but it is the mood which Ligotti creates that is the real power behind this piece. I could run a highlighter through several lines that really helped to create the depressing, dour atmosphere that envelopes the story. For me, personally, this was an impressive and welcome start to the collection.
I cannot see myself blasting through this book, as I do with so many others. Going off of the first story alone I intend on enjoying this collection piece by piece, perhaps only one or two stories a day. We will see. When all is said, I’m glad I have finally got around to sampling this authors work. A long and gloomy road lies ahead..