Tuesday, April 14, 2009
23. "Drood" - Dan Simmons
Oh, Bibliolatry, please forgive me. I still adore and worship you and your amazing taste.
Dan Simmons continues to confound readers using historical events as a backdrop to some creepy shite. In this case, the relationship between Charles Dickens and his friend, Wilkie Collins, after Dickens survives a train wreck and meets the infamous figure, Drood.
Who is Drood? Well, that would be spoiling the surprises. In short, Drood is a powerful mesmeric of London's underworld. Is he a form of Dickens's fiction? Or does he literally haunt the writer to his death, leaving Collins to write the monster's biography?
Wilkie Collins is not the most reliable character. While he prides himself on specifics of detail, he is under the influence of mega-doses of laudanum all of the time. However, his growing jealousy and hatred of Dickens is perfectly written because even *I* grew tired of the doddering fool by the middle of the book.
Could this novel have been edited from its original 700+ pages? Absolutely. Is this as compelling as Simmons's THE TERROR? Not a chance. Did I still sequester myself for the final 200 pages? Yes, but I'm a bad, bad person who ignores others.
4.25 out of 5.0 Stingers.