A review of Kate Mosse's supernatural short story collection.
My more frequent readers and friends probably know I have a soft spot for any variation of the Mistletoe Bride legend ( see a previous post here.) So when a book came out with two re-tellings, I had to have it - or to be precise, to hear it. I listened to THE MISTLETOE BRIDE AND OTHER HAUNTING TALES on a long dark and bleak journey to Yorkshire and back. Ideal.
This collection is on the gentler, more lyrical side of creepy - more eerie than horrific . There is one psychological tale I found more disturbing - but I can't say much without spoilers. There's a wide range of historical settings - and as you might expect from Kate Mosse, a strong sense of place.
These are strongly visual stories. There are black and white illustrations by Rohan Eason in the hardback edition (which sadly I don't have yet) some of which I have included here. I could easily imagine many as rather arty animations accompanied with weird little waltzes and whatnot in a minor key.
If you enjoy Susan Hill's supernatural tales, and own a few by M. R. James and Edith Wharton, this will sit well on your shelves. The stories mostly deliver pleasurable chills rather than shudders of distaste and horror. They are definitely not for fans of the gorefest.
The Wedding Ghost approves.