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Book Reviews: The Moorstone Sickness + Grants Pass

The Moorstone Sickness by Bernard Taylor
This slim 1982 novel sees a couple move to a small town with a secret. She’s wet, he’s a boor and the ‘mystery’ of what is going on is obviously telegraphed and contingent on the couple being morons. While it has initial promise; sloppy writing and sexism drag the potentially good narrative down. This is not recommended.

There are dated references to a collection of seventy-eights, smoking in cafes, someone having polio and attending a Glenda Jackson play. There is sexual harassment, patronising behaviour and grown women are described as girls. The wife acts like London is a hellhole. Worst of all there is a horrendously bad sex scene in which the phrase “rampant hardness” is used.

Best Lines:
“His stertorous breathing.”

“While the particular villagers - their benefactors - end up dying in the nuthouse.”

~
Grants Pass: A Post-Apocalyptic anthology edited by Jennifer Brozek & Amanda Pillar

Prologue
In a moment of whimsy, a woman posts a blog declaring Grants Pass the ideal place of sanctuary in case of something happening. Mmm.

Plague
Three bio-engineered plagues are released that coincide with bizarre weather. Iffy.

An Unkindness Of Ravens
After the end a hooker meets a reactionary militarist. This was written without any discernible talent.

Best Line:
“We stopped laughing when the plagues hits New York.”

Boudha
A dull inert tale of verminous cretins.

Hell’s Bells
A nihilistic lunatic child reacts obliviously to the end and then becomes an ominous spectre. Try hard.

Ascension
Self absorbed, hypocritical, tantrum throwing astronauts on the ISS get morose and it leads to awful chaos. This was excruciatingly rudimentary.

Animal Husbandry
I read this in ‘Wastelands 2’; the twist is the ‘heroine’ is putrid and vile, carrying out squalid acts. This was very good.

Men Of Faith
A group of good old boys head for Grants Pass. But one of them has an abhorrent plan. Good.

The Chateau De Mons
A teenager waxes epistemologically on what to do after the end. Okay.

The Few That Are Good
A badly written tale of two disreputable dim brothers who think they have the smug hegemony on being good and forcibly enforce their own authority.

Rights Of Passage
After the end, two’s company and three’s a crowd especially if one has self proclaimed inadequacies. This was not faultless.

A Perfect Night To Watch Detroit Burn
Canadians v Americans and various preconceptions. This was existentially null.

Final Edition
Small town madness is unconditional yet bad.

Best Line:
“Ducks in Lake Crook were staring at me again yesterday.”

The Discomfort Of Words
A blood curdling tale of a woman alone in Lanzarote. Very good.

Newfound Gap
Anarcho-primitivism is the way as preconceptions of the past are ripped away. The days of humanity have finitude. Very good.

Ink Blots
A solitary woman goes looking for someone, anyone else, who may have survived. Okay.

Black Heart, White Mourning
Another nihilistic lunatic deals with the end. Okay.

By The Sea
In Cyprus an old woman is determined to do things her way. Creepy.

Remberance
What became of Grants Pass? Did it work? This hints at the answers. Okay.

Epilogue
The end and the beginning as the woman who posted the Grants Pass blog heads there to see if it worked. Okay.
Tags: 2nd hand book store find, book review
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