A Natural History of Hell : Stories
Overview - Emily Dickinson takes a carriage ride with Death. A couple are invited over to a neighbor's daughter's exorcism. A country witch with a sea-captain's head in a glass globe intercedes on behalf of abused and abandoned children. In July of 1915, in Hardin County, Ohio, a boy sees ghosts. Read more...
More About A Natural History of Hell by Jeffrey Ford
Emily Dickinson takes a carriage ride with Death. A couple are invited over to a neighbor's daughter's exorcism. A country witch with a sea-captain's head in a glass globe intercedes on behalf of abused and abandoned children. In July of 1915, in Hardin County, Ohio, a boy sees ghosts. Explore contemporary natural history in a baker's dozen of exhilarating visions.
Praise for Jeffrey Ford:
"Outstanding. . . . Ford uses . . . incongruously lyrical phrases to infuse the everyday with a nebulous magic."--Publishers Weekly,
Best Books of the Year(Starred Review)
"For lovers of the weird and fantastic and lovers of great writing, this is a treasure trove of disturbing visions, new worlds and fully realized craft."--Shelf Awareness
"Properly creepy, but from time to time deliciously funny and heart-breakingly poignant, too."--Kirkus Reviews
Jeffrey Ford was born on Long Island in New York State in 1955 and grew up in the town of West Islip. He studied fiction writing with John Gardner at S.U.N.Y. Binghamton. He's been a college English teacher of writing and literature for thirty years. He is the author of eight novels including The Girl in the Glass
and four short story collections. He has received the World Fantasy, Nebula, Edgar, and Shirley Jackson awards. He lives with his wife Lynn in a century old farm house in a land of slow clouds and endless fields.
Publishers Weekly Reviews
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
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Celebrated short-form fantasist Ford (The Physiognomy) seamlessly blends subtle psychological horror with a mix of literary history, folklore, and SF in this collection of 13 short stories, all focused on the struggles, sorrows, and terrors of daily life. Some stories are told in the modern era; others are set in unspecified periods. Each tale gently twists perceptions, diving down into the ordinary and coming back out with a thoughtful nugget of the extraordinary. “The Blameless” opens the collection with a humorously scathing indictment of modern parenting, treating a teenager’s exorcism with the same tender care as one would any religious coming-of-age ceremony. “Rocket Ship to Hell” begins by lampooning pulp-era SF writers and progresses through an intriguing psychological twist, complete with an oblique X-Files reference. “Mount Chary Galore” is a bone-chilling story of three young children in a more innocent, more difficult time, and their encounter with the local wise woman. Each story has its own perfectly suited voice, and readers will be alarmed by how easily they relate to the well-meaning but inevitably destructive characters. (July)