“Anyone familiar with Brian J. Showers’ supernatural stories, presented in the delightful miniature chapbooks of Swan River Press, so tastefully illustrated by Duane Spurlock and Meggan Kehrli, will not be disappointed by his latest publication: No. 70 Merrion Square. Aficionados will recognise the address of the Dublin house where the great Sheridan Le Fanu wrote some of his finest tales and spent the last lonely decades of his life. Showers has cleverly engaged with the motif of Le Fanu by writing a story in which the protagonist, a horror author seeking renewed inspiration, settles in the house and encounters troubling experiences.
“Inter-textual references, to classic and contemporary supernatural writers, constantly inform the narrative, making it great fun for the connoisseur; and it is threaded with a vein of wry humour, tastefully and effectively juxtaposed against the horror, never an easy task. Throughout, the narrative displays the author’s lucid prose style and easy pace, a hallmark of all his previous work: in a phrase, Showers is a damned good story-teller, as well as a master of atmosphere and a shrewdly informed practitioner of the ghostly tale. Working closely within established genre conventions–haunted house, ghostly possession, numinous dreams, the angry dead, the inspiration and alienation of the artist, and the borderland between insanity and the supernatural– Showers has written a superb tribute to Victorian Gothic set within 21st Century Dublin. Few modern writers can be as versed in the supernatural heritage of that atmospheric city, with its strange mix of glitzy economic miracle and elegantly sombre past.” – Peter Bell
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Cover art by Duane Spurlock