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The Bone Key Paperback – Oct 23 2007

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Wildside Press (Oct. 23 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0809557770
  • ISBN-13: 978-0809557776
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 2 x 20.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 200 g
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,833,999 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Writing in the tradition of M.R. James and Algernon Blackwood, Monette reconstructs the traditional English ghost story—insinuated horror, no gratuitous sex or violence—with a decidedly modern-day approach in this laudable collection of 10 necromantic mystery stories featuring introverted museum archivist Kyle Murchison Booth. Noteworthy selections include Elegy for a Demon Lover, which chronicles Booth's entanglement with a seductive otherworldly entity who teaches him about pleasure and pain and the shadowed places in-between. In the brilliantly Lovecraftian Bringing Helena Back, Booth agrees to help an old college friend bring his wife back from the dead, with horrifying results. Booth also investigates the skeleton of a woman sealed within the basement walls of the museum where he works, a house haunted by the spirit of a young girl and the ghost of a murdered private school student. Cerebral, ethereal and stylishly understated, this entrancing collection will appeal to fans of literary horror, dark fantasy and supernatural mystery. (Jan.)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x9dc28258) out of 5 stars 32 reviews
28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9dabce70) out of 5 stars Well worth reading. Oct. 19 2007
By S. Johnson - Published on
Format: Paperback
I do not usually write reviews. Not because I don't read. I would simply rather read than write a review. The Bone Key is the first book by Monette that I have read, and it will not be the last. This book is a shining example of great writing. It is a series of interconnected short stories about a man named Kyle Murchison Booth. Booth is shy, brilliant and, through some fault of his own, a magnet for supernatural...things. A museum archivist/curator he lived in a very safe and isolated world until a brush with necromency brought his attention to things that he had not known existed. He could have lived quite nicely, and gone back to his safe little world, if not for the fact that the "brush" also brought the attention of the things to him.
If you like your horror with a bit of a twist, I recommend this book. It does not rely on blood and gore to get its point across. It is subtle, often funny, sometimes sad, and always disturbing.
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9dabcec4) out of 5 stars Superior literary creepiness Dec 27 2007
By Glinda Good - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love it when an author takes the time and trouble to include an introduction, or forward. Monette took the time, and what she said about literature and horror struck a chord with me. Monette names James and Lovecraft as two important influences on her desire to write fantastic fiction, noting that although she loves their use of language and crafting of story, she missed a more modern examination of the sexual and psychological aspects of characters.

The stories in The Bone Key are pure gold. Short, with as much of the stories left to the imagination as she puts into words, the language is reminiscent of the old fiction Monette says she loves. Her character, Kyle Murchison Booth, is eccentric yet sympathetic and appealing. Since he is such a shy, lone man it takes time to accumulate knowledge of the other people in his world. But slowly and surely Booth's experiences begin to build a population of interesting fringe characters -- some dead, some living. Booth's brushes with the unnatural are simultaneously creepy and thought-provoking.

If you're looking for subtle, literary stories with themes of horror (and how the most excruciating horror arises from the way people treat each other), try The Bone Key. You'll read these stories more than once!
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e3e81bc) out of 5 stars In the Best Tradition of Gothic Supernatural Horror Jan. 21 2008
By April - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
On the cover it says: The Necromantic Mysteries of Kyle Murchison Booth. The book consists of ten short stories and the intro says the author was highly influenced by M. R. James and H. P. Lovecraft, but wished for a bit more character development.

Booth is a retiring character who works as an archivist at a museum. The setting feels quite Victorian and Gothic, but there are phones, though not much more evidence, so far, of a modern world. The first story is "Bringing Helena Back"--and if that sounds creepy, it is. These are stories reminiscent of old fashioned horror, full of eccentric characters, dark secrets, vengeful spirits. There's no warm and fuzzy ghosts back to save the living. Life can be tragic and disturbing in this world. Cursed necklaces, family secrets, common human failings that turn tragic, murder, haunting, demons... it's all here.

I love a good ghost story and it's been too long since I've read one. This collection is among the best.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e3e80b4) out of 5 stars Gothic and Modern, and most importantly, Wonderful. Dec 19 2007
By Christa - Published on
Format: Paperback
I'm not a big fan of short stories, most of the time, even by authors whose novels I love, but this collection had me hooked from the first page to the last. Monette manages to capture the feel of those wonderful ghost stories from the Victorian writers, with their romantic melancholy while sparing us the excesses of prose and also giving us a fascinating protagonist.

'Elegy to a Demon Lover' is one of the most haunting stories I think I have ever read, and the book is worth buying for that one alone, but the others are also excellent.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e3e86f0) out of 5 stars an excellent collection of ghost stories Nov. 1 2007
By Margaret Johnston - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Kyle Murchison Booth is a museum archivist, bookish, erudite, awkward, and painfully shy. After a reluctant experiment with necromancy, in the collection's first story, "Bringing Helena Back", he finds that he has opened the door to the world of the supernatural, beginning a series of encounters which will bring him into contact with ghosts, ghouls, demons, and the mysteries of the human soul. The stories are all excellent -- subtle, witty, atmospheric, and quietly bone-chilling -- but it's Booth himself whose presence pulls them together and makes them remarkable. He could choose to ignore the odd events around him (some of them, anyway -- some demand his attention), but he can't; his compassion for others and most of all, his deep need to know and understand compel him to investigate the mysterious happenings around him.

If I had to pick out favorite stories, I would say "The Venebretti Necklace", which has a wonderful secondary character among other virtues, or "Elegy for a Demon Lover", which brought tears to my eye, but really, they're all absorbing and a wonderful reading experience for a chilly autumn evening.