The Croning by Laird Barron
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This is my first Laird Barron and it will not be my last. In fact, I'm very excited to grab anything else he's written for all kinds of reasons: beautiful prose, a creepy old-school horror mastery that straddles the lines between haunting images, idyllic life, and mind-destroying terror.
Indeed, I fell down the rabbit hole of this fantastic exploration of an *obviously* wrong interpretation of the Hollow Earth theory. I got caught up trying to piece together the many different time periods, the cross-sections of a single lifetime. The horror aspects were awesome but it was the mystery that kept me coming back.
How could everything return to normal? Again and again? What is the truth? Or better yet... how is the truth?
It's easy to wave a hand and say this is a Cthuhlu-ish tale. It's more interesting to call this a really dark retelling of Rumplestiltskin. But what is the truth?
This is a wonderfully dark and beautifully written work of cosmic terror couched as an idyllic life well lived... with strange gaps. :)
No spoilers, but I should mention that I guffawed and rubbed my hands by the end. :)
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