20th Century Ghosts – 3/5 Stars
But like I said, as with a lot of first story collections, this one is a mixed bag. It’s also a mixed bag in terms of the diversity of the stories. There’s a blend of different genres here, including no specific genre. Some of the stories are more or less straight up horror, some are fantasy, others more literary, others are more, I guess I would it clever in their approach.
The collection sets up in the first story with a story about stories. “Best New Horror” which I think is the story I find most compelling is also a lot of fun. It’s about a writer who edits a “Best New Horror” collection coming across a new writer with a gruesome, but masterly story that caused a stir when it was first published in a more literary journal.
I feel like I should like Kingsley Amis a lot, and I just can’t seem to be bothered to. Even thinking about back about first reading Lucky Jim, I wonder if I actually liked it or not. It was one of those books one of my friends really liked, and because he talked about it a lot, and because I was a grad student, and because he named his dog “Kingsley” I liked it. That, or I willed myself to like it. Or I decided to like it before I read and went from there. But now when I read his books, I find myself drifting.
I hated Old Devils, and was bored by this one.