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Peake in the Attic?

Lovers of Mervyn Peake's unique fantasy trilogy Gormenghast are notoriously touchy, protective and defensive about this literary treasure. First, the series exists sadly only in a damaged state, its third volume not completed properly due to the author’s degeneration from Parkinson’s. Second, as the “other” seminal fantasy trilogy from mid-twentieth century, Peake’s masterpiece has always played the underdog to Tolkien’s. Fans and critics are prone to rhapsodize about what commercial fantasy fiction might look like nowadays, if only Peake had triumphed over his Inkling rival. Read more...

July 25: On this day in 1834 Samuel Taylor Coleridge died of heart disease at the age of sixty-one.

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Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
Paradise and Elsewhere

Canadian short story marvel Kathy Page emerges as the Alice Munro of the supernatural from these heartfelt tales of shapeshifting swimmers, mild-mannered cannibals, and personality-shifting viruses transmitted through kisses.

Pastoral

When a persuasive pastor arrives in a sleepy farm town, his sage influence has otherworldly results (talking sheep, a mayor who walks on water). But can he pull off the miracle of finding kindly local Liz Denny the love of her life?  Small wonder looms large in this charmer from Andre Alexis.

The Hundred-Year House

When a poetry scholar goes digging through the decrepit estate of his wife's family to uncover a bygone arts colony's strange mysteries, he awakens a tenacious monster: his mother-in-law. A wickedly funny take on aging aristocracies from author Rebecca Makkai (The Borrower).