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Forums Index -> Best-cellars -> ANCIENT IMAGES by Ramsey Campbell
The Butcher
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2007 6:23 pm  Reply with quote
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Joined: 20 Jun 2006
Posts: 1305

Easily my favorite novel by Ramsey campbell I have read so far. A great book for film geeks as well. Boy oh boy would this make an insanely great project for Dario Argento...



From Publishers Weekly
British horror writer Campbell here focuses on one of his most intriguing inventions, a horror film supposedly starring Boris Karloff and Bela Lugosi, made in England in 1938 and immediately suppressed. When film editor Sandy Allen decides to track down a print of the film, her detective work leads her to Redfield, a rural community known for the delicious wheat that grows on its rich soil, fertilized by blood from an ancient massacre and, it turns out, in need of a fresh infusion every 50 years to maintain its fecundity. During her search, Sandy is shadowed by bizarre creatures that sometimes look like dogs and sometimes like scarecrows. After Sandy finally pins down the connection between the film and Redfield, the creatures come out of the shadows and reveal themselves. Campbell's novels tend to be dense and less accessible than his short stories, but this narrative seems more relaxed and simplified--perhaps his most readable effort since his debut in The Doll Who Ate His Mother.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal
A colleague's violent death and its apparent cause--a stolen copy of an old, never-released Karloff/Lugosi film--set film editor Sandy Allan on the trail of the film's origins and history. Mystery surrounds the movie, and as Sandy learns of the tragedies which haunted its production, she finds herself threatened by an ancient force protecting secrets deeper than the suppression of a 50-year-old movie. Interestingly, in this novel centered on a horror movie supposedly judged too disturbing to be shown in theaters, author Campbell makes it clear that his own view of the genre does not include the splatter films and paperbacks of the 1980s horror market. His brand of fear derives from atmosphere, suggestion, and his trademark fever-dream world, where litter scuttles across deserted sidewalks and toadstools gleam like eyes. Campbell is renowned among fans and writers alike as the master of a skewed and exquisitely terrifying style, and this latest novel will only add to his reputation.
- A.M.B. Amantia, Population Crisis Committee Lib., Washington, D.C.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Tsotha-lanti
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2007 7:41 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 18 Feb 2007
Posts: 2474
Location: September sun, rotted flatbush porch...

The idea certainly looks interesting... I think "the Necronomicon as a 1930s horror film instead of an occult grimoire" when I read this, but I could of course be wrong.
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Legba
PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2007 11:07 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 04 Jul 2006
Posts: 1567

Campbell is one of my favorite writers of the macbre. I especially love his short stories, which are a surrealist/absurdists wet dream.

The concept for Ancient Images was practically stolen verbatim by the writers of Cigarrette Burns. Well that and exact plot points of The Club Dumas but who the hells counting?
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Cash Bailey
PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2007 8:19 am  Reply with quote



Joined: 04 Jul 2006
Posts: 477
Location: Australia

You know, I've never read a Ramsey Campbell novel. I've read at least one book from almost every major author in the field, except Campbell.

I should be ashamed of myself, especially considering I actually found the time to read Edward Lee!!
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Johnny Butane
PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2007 12:51 pm  Reply with quote
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Joined: 20 Jun 2006
Posts: 1985
Location: East Coast, bitches

Only one I read (that I recall) was The Doll That Ate His Mother and it didn't make a lick of sense.
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The Butcher
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2007 5:06 am  Reply with quote
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Joined: 20 Jun 2006
Posts: 1305

I'll send this to you Johnny if you'll read it. You should. I'm not joking when I say it would make one hell of an Argento film (but it makes sense I swear!!!)
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Karloff
PostPosted: Fri Mar 19, 2010 3:34 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 15 Mar 2010
Posts: 264

I have long been a fan of Campbell's. I was first turned on to him through King's glowing praise in Danse Macabre.

He really plays with the reader's mind in his stories, painting a surreal and schizophrenic world. It's very much like taking a hit off a very strong joint (er, I would imagine!). I've never read anyone like him.

First met him during the awful Bulger case trial, when the media was trying to put the blame on the Child's Play film. I was a hack on a local paper back then and the editor wanted to take the same kind of slant as the nationals. I thought "Balls to that" and phoned Ramsey up (a very accessible writer, he's still in the local directory as far as I know). He gave us a great quote, sent in a letter to the paper which - naturally - was the most astute comment on the whole affair.

Anyway, sorry, we were talking about Ancient Images weren't we? Never read it!

His stuff is so hard to get hold of now and if you want his newest work you won't find it in WH Smith's or Waterstones. And it's pretty pricey, too. I'll keep an eye out for this book, though, when I'm scouring the secondhand bookstores.
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CryptWalker
PostPosted: Thu Aug 26, 2010 5:28 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 25 May 2010
Posts: 80

Hmmm, I'll look into it. Sounds up my alley.
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