An Intimate Knowledge of the Night
The Wonder and the Terror...
When an author sits down to write the linking pieces for the stories in his new book, planning to do it by the hours of the night observed by medieval scholars, he is interrupted by phonecalls from his eccentric yet harmless friend, Raymond, a former mental patient with whom he shares some curious notions about the perceived world.
At first casual and interested, even helpful, these calls soon become increasingly tense and strange, until the author realizes that what started out as an innocent fun idea - a shared all-night vigil on the autumn Equinox - is actually serving some other vital purpose, becoming by stages part therapy, party incantatory process, part vindication of those very theories which will change forever the way he sees the world.
Terry Dowling's marvellous new book is about rapture, fear, the secret, darkest mysteries of the world and the human spirit, and features such chilling classics as "The Bullet That Grows in the Gun" and "The Daemon Street Ghost-Trap", and award-winning stories like "The Last Elephant" and "The Quiet Redemption of Andy the House".
"The Bullet That Grows in the Gun"
"The Maze Man"
"They Found the Angry Moon"
"The Last Elephant"
"The Third Gift"
"The Quiet Redemption of Andy the House"
"The Mars You Have in Me"
"The Rediscovery of Tutankhamen's Tomb"
"Scaring the Train"
Aphelion Publications (AUS): ISBN 1-875346-15-52, soft cover, 284 pages, 1995. Cover by Nick Stathopoulos.
THE CRITICS SAY . . .
|"it's excellent. As an examination of the schizoid condition, it's disturbingly brilliant (or should that be brilliantly disturbing?)"
|"the best of these tales are untrammelled delight...Dowling's most ambitiously literary collection."
|Sydney Morning Herald
|"An extraordinary collection of linked tales about rapture, fear, the secret darkest mysteries of the world and the human spirit."
|"This beautiful collection of tales by one of Australia's best writers crosses between fantasy, horror, and SF."
|The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror
|"If your taste in horror runs towards the subtly chilling, you will probably love this collection. And even if you think you have no taste for horror at all, if you remember the old Twilight Zone with fondness, this book is for you."
|The New York Review of Science Fiction
|"Aphelion is a highly regarded Australian small press and Dowling a likewise esteemed Australian writer. Both are primarily known for their work in the SF field, but this handsome trade paperback collection of the author's darker tales proves that neither's excellence is restricted to a single genre...Dowling is firmly in control, displaying an exacting attention to detail that is somewhat reminiscent of Dennis Etchinson, and an ability to introduce the bizarre or supernatural into any situation in a manner that sometimes recalls the work of Peter Straub."
|The Scream Factory
|"If this book were simply a collection of Terry Dowling's best short fiction, it would deserve to be reviewed with respect, even with relish...However [it's] more than just a bundle of stories, no matter how intriguing. They have been set into an eerie and eloquent story of their selection and ordering...Dowling's lissom reality testings - plucking at the fabric of story and the story- stopper called mystery - are a delight in themselves. But they are given a special intensity by their frame-tale of Terry's wrestling with his dark twin, admirer, inspirer and misleader."