Thursday, May 29, 2008
I'd read Ancient Images long ago and thought it would be nice to revisit before Campbell's new one is released this side of the pond in July. Campbell's got two gears in his novels: the re-awakening of some hoary pagan magic, or the descent of some paranoid loser into obsessive stalking and murder. Ancient Images is of the former category, and it holds up well. A TV film critic and researcher discovers a copy of a suppressed Karloff and Lugosi horror film and dies mysteriously just as he's about to screen it. The film is stolen, and his friend takes time off from work to trace any information she can about the movie. What many thought was fiction turns out to be all too real, bwa hahah ah ha.
Campbell is an aquired taste. He's more about atmosphere than action, and his obtuse style can frustrate. But I've always liked his style, and the way he puts the fear into atmosphere.