Reading Notes, 2/22/21

Finished Reading

The Ghost Pirates cover

The Ghost Pirates by William Hope Hodgson

Back in October of last year, I got in the mood to read about some supernatural fiction set at sea. I planned on reading Hodgson’s The Ghost Pirates, but ended up instead reading the first of a trio of his novels that are kinda-sorta related. The Boats of the ‘Glen Caring’ still fit that supernatural-at-sea niche, though was much more of an adventure novel. The second, The House on the Borderland, delved more fully into Hodgson’s dimension/time slip motifs, but with much less plot. The Ghost Pirates ends up being a pretty good melding of the two.

Seaman Jessop survives the destruction of the Mortzestus and lives to tell the tale of strange goings-on. It begins as phantom winds and unnatural fogs, but events quickly get out of hand as the captain of the ship will not believe that it’s anything more than a little bad luck or the meandering minds of his underlings. Again, I like Hodgson’s factual narrative style (in contrast with someone like Lovecraft) and, considering his time as a sailor, he writing what he knows. The plot gets a little repetitive; end of the day, I probably like The Boats of the ‘Glen Caring’ the best out of these three novels.

I Read Horror Year-Round banner

This was my first book for the I Read Horror Year-Round challenge:
Horror featuring a body of water.

Deal Me In

7♠️: “Vampiro” by Emilia Pardo Bazán, translated by Nina Zumel
This was one of two tales featured on Nina’s blog back in April of last year. The blog post was about two “living” literary vampires. In this case, the young, lovely Inesiña is married off to a 77½ year-old. He couldn’t possibly out-live her, right? I hope I draw the other tale, “Good Lady Ducayne” by Mary Elizabeth Braddon in the near future.

Currently Reading

Didn’t read as much last week as I originally intended. I ended up in a blah mood and played a lot of Minecraft. (I listened to The Ghost Pirates. LibriVox has some pretty good recordings.) This week, I will continue with Dune Messiah by Frank Herbert. Coles’ The Call of Stories was annoying me, so I needed a break. What’s the opposite of literary pretentiousness? The Coney Island Fakir: The Magical Life of Al Flosso by Gary R. Brown. Plus, short stories.

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