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Curfew

de Phil Rickman

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3221061,065 (3.96)20
Every night for 400 years, a curfew bell has tolled from the church tower of Crybbe. Superstitious ritual, or sole defence against an ancient evil?
  1. 00
    The M.D. de Thomas M. Disch (ehines)
    ehines: Rickman is quite different from Disch--he likes people better, and is more likely to combine horror with light-humorous observation, but in their common ability to make interesting observations about contemporary life and our hunger for meaning within this genre, they are akin.… (més)
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Es mostren 1-5 de 10 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Phil Rickman is an author who continues to write the kind of horror novels I like best. This novel managed to keep me from guessing the outcome ahead of time.

Bless you, Phil Rickman, for your sensitive handling of Arnold's storyline and not going for the cheap emotional manipulation so frequently used by the tired hacks of the horror genre. This book earns a Pet Lovers Seal of Approval!

*SPOILERISH*

I do love a story where sweet ladies of a certain age wearing tartan skirts and errant heavy equipment operators can be heroes and possibly hook up for a happily-ever-after ending in the readers imagination. ( )
  Equestrienne | Jan 5, 2021 |
Loved this book. ( )
  Chica3000 | Dec 11, 2020 |
I picked Curfew up from the library after coming it across it on a thread on Facebook where people had posted on their scariest reads. It's a long time since I've read a book that really petrified me and love watching films through my fingers. I admit to binging on Shaun Hutson in my teenage years. Then got into a bit of a silly snobby phase of reading "literature." So left the horror genre behind and never really got back to it.

Now I've read that Rickman doesn't like his early books - of which "Curfew" (originally published as "Crybbe") was his second offering - being caterogised as horror. So he may be happy to read that I wouldn't class it as a horror either. It is a certainly a story with supernatural elements; creepy but not terrifying; violent deaths abound but descriptions aren't playing for shock value gore. What makes it engaging is that Rickman draws his inspiration from British folklore and ritual; you get a sense of the eerie atmosphere of historic and sometimes ancient towns and villages. You certainly get a realistic experience of the distrustful and exclusionary nature of locals towards people from 'off'.

The novel moves with the pace of visiting tourist. It's almost 700 pages but I enjoyed every page. The multiple characters are well drawn and distinct. They are believable and have to be for the reader to accept the supernatural events that slowly build to a crescendo.

Rickman is an author I will certainly read again. ( )
  Georgina_Watson | Jun 14, 2020 |
All things lead to Stephen King – I know you guys are tired of hearing me go on about my favorite, but it’s true. I look for books that King has recommended or reviewed over the years. When King says that Phil Rickman’s [Curfew] was ‘creepy,’ I take note. If it can creep King out, I’m in. And I admit, I had to put the book down a couple of times after particularly creepy passages.

For centuries, people have been obsessed with ‘ley-lines’ in Britain, especially those that are still marked with stones, like the stones at Stonehenge. For one backwards village, in the borderland near Wales, the obsession was not born of curiosity or wonder, but of fear. Crybbe’s church bell has rung one hundred times every night for 400 years. What do the bells ward the town against? Max Goff, a millionaire record executive, begins to re-erect stones along ley-lines where they were removed long ago, hoping to establish the town as a center for new age enlightenment and spiritual awakening. As he repositions the stones, something rather darker that what Goff intended begins to grow in Crybbe. People begin to see sinister things in their homes; they begin to act in strange and violently inappropriate ways. The village keeps ringing the bell, hoping that what’s worked for 400 years will work again.

This book was a revelation to me – you can still uncover amazing and refreshing writers. I was hooked from the first few lines – let’s see if I can hook you,

“In Crybbe, night did not fall. Night rose. It welled out of the bitter brown earth caged in brambles in the neglected wood beyond the churchyard, swarming up the trees until they turned black and began to absorb the sky.”

After reading those lines, I bought the book and begin reading it pretty much immediately.

Rickman is not well-known in America, though he has been fairly successful in Britain, having won awards for his TV and radio journalism. He also writes, under pseudonyms, a few successful series of supernatural mysteries, chief among them the Merrily Watkins books about an Anglican priest and mother. Many of his standalone novels have recently been reprinted here in America, among them [Curfew].

Rickman’s talent is his language and the ability to gradually build suspense. He’s no slouch at storytelling, but the story occasionally got convoluted and meandered a little. But with his skill at creating tone and pace with word choice alone, he never loses the reader. Even when the story is a little unclear, his language draws you in closer, until your slapped back at some unearthly, and often revolting, revelation.

Bottom Line: Creepy book, with a tone and pace created from beautifully chosen language.

4 ½ bones!!!!! ( )
4 vota blackdogbooks | Dec 15, 2013 |
An early novel and sometimes this shows, nevertheless this sets up an interesting proposition that evil can linger for centuries, just waiting to be awakened by dabbling new agers. I like how Rickman intelligently adapts folklore and history to suit his needs without being gratuitous. Oh yes and Gomer Parry puts in an appearance. ( )
1 vota riverwillow | Oct 13, 2012 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 10 (següent | mostra-les totes)
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Every night for 400 years, a curfew bell has tolled from the church tower of Crybbe. Superstitious ritual, or sole defence against an ancient evil?

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