for lovers of Tolkien
'Titus Groan', Mervyn Peake’s first book of 'The Gormenghast Trilogy', is set in a huge castle, a vast landscape of crumbling towers and ivy-filled quadrangles that has been the hereditary residence of the Groan family for centuries. Unlike Tolkien, where darkness is a force to be defeated, here darkness is its very setting. It’s the stuff of nightmares, riddled with black humour and was not written for children. The birth of Titus Groan, heir to Lord Sepulchrave, interrupts the daily rituals which are practiced at all levels of the castle society, from the kitchens to the Hall of Bright Carvings. On the other hand, Steerpike is a ruthlessly ambitious kitchen boy. His entry into society at the same time as Lord Titus is born introduces steadily growing subliminal conflict.
I love the Gormenghast books. I know exactly what you mean when you say that darkness is its very setting. The series has a real Gothic feel to it and Peake's descriptive abilities are excellent, enabling the reader to see and smell the castle and its environs.
Jun 9, 2009 7:01 pm
Gormenghast is Wonderful! Never got the recognition it deserves. ?
Jan 25, 2010 10:28 pm
Gormenghast is truely a Wonderful book!
Feb 8, 2010 11:41 am
I just couldn't get into the first book.
Feb 17, 2010 1:42 pm
Yea they are brilliant books due to re read sometime next year. Best a
Nov 7, 2010 3:27 am