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The Last Heretic Darrell Schweitzer
Cover Art: Jason Van Hollander
Introduction: Paul Di Filippo
“A long-deserved tribute to his copious and entertaining career as a storyteller,” is how Paul Di Filippo describes this second volume of our Darrell Schweitzer retrospective in his introduction. “We might first make the observation that Darrell hews to time-tested narrative strategies: classical, demonstrably effective modes of story-telling learned at the feet of the masters. . . This straight-line approach does not rule out suspense, trickery, or depth of portraiture. Quite to the contrary, this reliance on immemorial methods of storytelling allow his work to hit home all the more impactfully. Take a story like ‘The Dead Kid,’ which always lays all of its cards on the table in plain sight, Stephen-King-style, but which is nonetheless full of twists and punchy horror. . . . In ‘The Fire Eggs,’ we see an alien manifestation that greatly perturbs civilization, along the lines of a Ted Chiang piece. In "Spiderwebs in the Dark" we get a mind-blowing look at the hidden underpinnings of the spacetime continuum.”
Indeed here we see Schweitzer display the fullest range of his talents, from the supernatural to science fiction to wry wit (the hilarious “Kvetchula”) to what can only be described as post-modern existential weirdness in “Ring the Living Bells,” which Di Filippo compares to Robert Aickman. We also get sophisticated neo-pulp (“Waiting for the Zeppelin Gang”), theological alternate history (“The Last Heretic”), Arthurian romance, Lovecraftian horror, and some truly unique material. “The Adventure of the Hanoverian Vampires” is not only a Sherlock Holmes pastiche, but the only alternate historical vampire cat detective story ever written. Whatever his fictional mode, Darrell Schweitzer is a vastly entertaining writer.
Limited to 100 copies signed by Darrell Schweitzer and Paul Di Filippo