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Book Reviews: Drawn Up From Deep Places, part 3 + Ghostly, part 1 + The Princess Bride

Drawn Up From Dark Places by Gemma Files, part 3

A tale of Jack The Ripper. This is neither a complex dark world nor an interesting take on the bizarrely demonic Jack. There’s no possible thought reform for him, no moral lesson or genuine insight. This is contrary to sense.

Best Line:
“Howling mad harlot killer.”

A Feast For Dust
A western, in which a man has a disconcerting encounter which is an unmixed blessing and a dubious honour in this okay tale.

Best Lines:
“Pray for you after, little as you deserve any such thing.”

“When he realized what they had in mind as regards his ending-”

“No consequences to come.”

Drawn Up From Deep Places
Yet another prequel to ‘Trap-Weed’, the ill-fated sea captain encounters a siren. The cursed captain becomes infatuated but has to accept the reality of the world with which he is presented and the dark tides of vengeances that ensnare him. There is no respect or kindness in this middling appealing tale that has a lot of gay fetishisation.

Best Lines:
“Birthed to roam and kill and eat without rest,”


“Knowing himself despised and avoided.”


“Took pleasure in being hated.”

Hell Friend
Something is watching her rapt and ravenous. This is really fairly awful.

Best Line:
“He was Edward, she was Bella.”

Satan’s Jewel Crown
A western tale of magic, zombies, love, necromancy and a coldly pleased ‘hero’. This was okay.

Best Line:
“Re-ordered an entire town to his personal liking.”

The Salt Wedding
A sequel to ‘Trap-Weed’, the cursed sea captain’s awful fate and narcissistic rage and angry regret go on and on and on. This was okay.

Ghostly: A Collection Of Ghost Stories edited, illustrated and introduced by Audrey Niffenegger, part 1

An okay introduction.

Best Lines:
“Future heavens or hells,”

“We project emotion onto them, they love us inscrutably, if at all. They have a keen sense of retribution.”

“See us and know us.”

The Black Cat
By Edgar Allan Poe. An animal abuser and wife killer comes up with a maniacal plan to conceal his deeds. This was terrible and has no creepy charm and I fail to see why Poe is treated with reverence. The jackass in the story was all unpleasantness and deserved all retaliatory measures. This was absurdity. Poe’s fame was a great historic mistake.

Secret Life, With Cats
There is no sweet sentiment as an alienated woman faces a moral quandary after the death of a friend. This tries for a distortive effect but one is disincentivised to care.

Best Line:
“Misconceived notions.”

Pomegranate Seed
By Edith Wharton, this is a tale like ‘Rebecca’, where a 2nd wife learns her husband is still ruled by his dead 1st wife. This is not innovative or deliberately evocative.

The Princess Bride by William Goldman
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