The Curse of the Wise Woman by Lord Dunsany
Tradepaperback – Valancourt Books – 2014 – 181 pages
After his father’s interference in Irish politics ends with a band of killers arriving on Christmas night to assassinate him, young Charles Peridore finds himself master of the estate. During idyllic school holidays, Charles enjoys riding to hounds and hunting geese and snipe while his friend Tommy Marlin tells stories of Tir-nan-Og, the land of eternal youth that lies just beyond the bog. But when Progress arrives in the form of an English corporation determined to convert the landscape into factories and housing, it appears that an entire way of life is destined to vanish. Only one thing stands in the way: the sorcery of an old witch, whose curses the English workers do not even believe in. In the novel’s unforgettable conclusion, the ancient powers of the wise woman will be pitted against the machinery of modern corporate greed, with surprising and thrilling results.
Lord Dunsany (1878-1957) is one of the most influential fantasy authors of the 20th century, counting H.P. Lovecraft, J.R.R. Tolkien, Michael Moorcock and Neil Gaiman among his many admirers. Regarded by many as his finest novel, The Curse of the Wise Woman (1933), a rich blend of fantasy, nostalgia and autobiography, returns to print for the first time in decades in this edition, which features a new introduction by Mark Valentine.