October is the perfect month for reading gothics. Halloween is just around the corner, and who doesn’t want a deliciously shivery book? This month’s TBR Challenge was great fun, and coincidentally, both of us found ourselves venturing to the north of England for brooding, gothic-tinged reads. What books do you like for this time of year? […]
Today, AAR Reviewers Maggie, Caz, Mary, Linniegayl and Melanie have AAR’s first ever Round Table Discussion. The book chosen is Simone St. James Lost Among the Living. Ms. St. James is a popular author with AAR staff having made several Top Ten lists in 2015 as well as having two DIK reviews on our site. Lost Among the Living is her most recent release and one that has been eagerly anticipated by many. […]
When Dabney Grinnan asked me to define a Gothic at RWA in New York, my first reaction was to use Potter Stewart’s infamous “I know it when I see it” line. But of course, that won’t do. So for my overarching statement I will say that in a Gothic, every single aspect of the text—language, plot, setting, characterization—is in service to the mood.
And that mood is creepy.
The reader of a Gothic—whether romance or straight Gothic fiction (which tends to verge on horror)—should experience an unrelenting sense of dread, and that dread should start on the very first page. For example, the beginning of Barbara Michaels’s classic Be Buried in the Rain:
The old pickup hit a pothole with a bump that shook a few more flakes of faded blue paint from the rusted body. Joe Danner swore, but […]