The Girl With the Peacock Harp by Michael Eisele
Hardcover – Tartarus Press – 2016 – 286 pages
The fifteen strange stories that comprise this stunning debut collection range over the fantastic, the supernatural and the psychological. In ‘An Old Tale’, a young ballet student discovers hope beyond the barriers of death. ‘The Music’ tells of a violinist who must face the ghosts of his past; and those ghosts are brought to life in ‘The Beginning’. In ‘Gloria and the Selchie’ a modern Irish girl discovers that the stories her old granny told her are all too true, while in ‘The Lighthouse’, a retired sea captain falls in love. ‘What Dreams May Come’ moves the scene to modern day Manhattan, as an advertising executive is haunted by dreams of a giant raptor. In ‘Sanity’, the boundary between delusion and reality becomes a battlefield between a patient and her therapist. ‘Rolf’ takes the reader to the world of the medieval mason, and a strange apprenticeship. ‘The Change’ concerns the legend of the were-wolf from an unusual point of view, and in ‘The Kelpie’, a novice mage learns the true extent of her powers.