The Face of Twilight (Mark Samuels) pdf, epub, doc

I initially put this little novella at 4to 4.5 stars, but after marinating a bit on it and thinking over what I liked so much about this novella and much of Samuels' later work, I realized that 5 stars was entirely appropriate.

Before I launch intotying this work to Samuels' other related pieces, I figured it would beworth briefly exploring the meta theme's coveredin this novella. Samuels hasn't gone so far as to create a mythos with this workandsome of his other short stories, however, there is a common meta theme that appears woven into much of his writing. Samuelsseems tobe working from this idea that our current reality is simply unreal... nothing more than the whimsy, fantasy, anddreamscape of the already dead. Imagine that... a complete inversion of reality... we are nothing more than a figment of the imagination of anon-existentbeleiver. Absolutely mind twisting.

Well, this novella masterfully delves into this very idea of unreality and runs wild with it. Our protganonist,Ivan Gilman, is the perfect anti-hero for this incredibly bizare story. We have a sad sack down-on-his-luck alcoholic writer who is stumbling through regrettable bouts of sobreity long enough to piece together his thoughts on a new piece of fiction so that the can meet a publisher's deadline. Through his explorations he begins toacquire a overt tinge of paranoia added on to his drunken state, and realizes that allis not well in the world.

Samuels does an outstanding job of handling some of the macro apocalyptic elements that pace this story to its fitting end. And of course, with this very inverted idea that our world is nothing more than a figment of someone else's imagination, we find out that Ivan is not really who he thinks he is or who we, the reader, thinks he is (I won't spoil things too much and leave this revelation be). Likewise, the atmoshphere and dread mood building are exquisitely handled by Samuels, really helping this reader feel that greenish twilight cloying about the mind. By the very end, I mercifully shut this book, took a deep breath, looked out the window to see the natural sunlight peaking through the window blinds, and thanked my stars that the story ended when it did. Or did it...

The great thing about Samuels' work, including this one, is that it really sticks with you. This very idea of our reality simply being a farce is incredibly insidious... very much like a splinter slowly driving its way to the mind's eye. And of course, much of Samuels' works utilize thistheme of words, phrases, and language serving as a virus, corupting the reality of anyone that hears, sees, or reads it.

If you really like this theme, Samuels has gone on to further explore this with a number of his recently published stories in the collection "Glyphotech".

I highly recommend "The Face of Twilight" and many of his other works, particularly for those fans of mind twisting weird tale fun. This will not dissapoint.

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