Jeremy Dyson - The Haunted Book
A disappointingly scare-free short story collection from the League of Gentleman writer
As the non-acting quarter of The League of Gentlemen and co-creator of the acclaimed West End stage hit, Ghost Stories, Jeremy Dyson knows a thing or two about scaring the bejesus out of folks. Curious, almost uncanny, then, that this Hallowe’en-timed offering should be so light on anything bordering a proper shock.
To be fair, some mild chills do abound on this exploration into spooky goings-on across the country when Dyson is approached by a journalist called Aiden Fox to fashion some paranormal discoveries into stylish prose; the yarns about a haunted recording studio and a ghostly red telephone do the trick, but few hit the same mark of sinister intrigue.
Among the selection of mostly unscary stories are segments from other so-called haunted books, perhaps Dyson’s attempt to camouflage the most glaring mystery in his own tale revolving around the secretive man who commissioned him. Rather disappointingly, you could read this in a gothic house near you and still get a very comfortable night’s rest.