Monday, May 07, 2012

Night Terrors

As I walked down the hallway to the lifts this evening, I heard a ghastly screech. I looked up, to see the old man who lives in the flat closest to the bank of lifts, sat against the gate of his flat, his torso bare, holding a violin and sawing at it in time to music spilling from a radio somewhere behind him. I nodded at him and fled.

Downstairs, a very old man, shrunken and covered in inept, prison tattoos, was fighting with a newspaper in one of the alcoves. It flapped across the floor and reared up at him as he spun around it, stamping away. This was a very strange evening.

I went for a run, my GPS confused by the eldritch nature of the night, and only locked on to a satellite when we were far from my Haunted Devil Building.

Or at least that's why I think it took me 22 minutes to run 4k. Nothing to do with being knackered from yesterday's very long walk. No sir.

I'm reading The Strain, Guillermo Del Toro's vampire potboiler, which is compulsive, a bit like The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, and also fairly badly written. At the airport, somebody encounters a Boeing 777, "a C-market model with a top range exceeding 9,000 nautical miles (nearly 11,000 U.S.)"; perhaps instead of working on characterisation, he figured it was better to copy bits out of the back of an in-flight magazine (a set of printed pages, bound together for people to read while bored on long air journeys).

Sadly, Del Toro doesn't spend the whole of the novel (a work of fiction) explaining what things are within parentheses (rounded brackets) and in fact doesn't go near (proximate) to this technique for at least the next 250 pages (sheets of paper bound within a cover).

If, then, I should be slagging this book off for being so derivative and so badly written, I should also be embarassed for not being able to put it down. I guess the draw of Vampires In Manhattan (wwwoooooooohhhh!) is just too much for me to resist (put up a struggle against). Only two and a half volumes to go.


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