Time of Passing by John Gaskin
Hardcover – Tartarus Press – 2023 – 212 pages
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Time of Passing, the fifth volume of John Gaskin’s acclaimed ‘Tales of Twilight and Borderlands’, contains nine entirely new stories, along with four which first appeared in a previous collection and an anthology. Infused with an almost uncanny understanding of things past and to come, and enlivened by touches of sardonic humour, John Gaskin’s stories are firmly in the tradition of the classic English ghost story and tales of the unknown.
A sense of place is always strongly present, as is the influence of the author’s Classical scholarship. Some stories feature academics and Oxford colleges, but also, in ‘Time of Passing’, lock keepers on the River Isis in Oxford. The beautiful wilds of Northumberland and the hazards they pose for the unwary or unlucky, are the setting for ‘Cropsey’s Hole’. In the elegiac ‘The Sea’, time itself drives the narrative.
Contains: ‘Foreword’, ‘Time of Passing’, ‘The Stone Guest’, ‘The Second Master’, ‘Avernus’, ‘The Gathering’, ‘The New Member’, ‘Dead Hands’, ‘Blaeweary’, ‘The Return of Fire’, ‘On a Summer Night’, ‘Cropsey’s Hole’, ‘The Sea’, ‘Last Words’
This first edition is limited to 350 signed copies.