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Author: Sarban (John William Wall)
Published: 1951
Language: English
Wordcount: 46,693 / 126 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 83.9
LoC Category: PZ
Downloads: 2,533
Added to site: 2008.02.13 20053
Genres: Horror, Post-1930

A Tale of Dark and Mordant Terror.

Show Excerpt

om furnished with old-fashioned mahogany and horse-hair furniture. A small, grey-haired man was sitting at a table on which a number of books lay open.

I saw Dr Ravelin then as a neat elderly gentleman; dapper, in an old-fashioned way. He wore what Daddy used to call a Gates-of-Heaven collar with a white-spotted blue bow tie, and a dark grey suit with all four buttons of the jacket buttoned. I thought his manner was rather formal and my nervousness wasn't helped very much by his trick of cocking his head sharply on one side and raising his bushy eyebrows at each answer I made, as if I surprised ruin. The horse-hair easy chair he invited me to sit on had been made for some kind of anatomy quite different from mine, for I slipped and slid about on it and felt anything but easy.

He questioned me about my course at Towerton, my age, hobbies, games and so on, and his questions were so much at random that I began to suspect that the business of engaging a temporary governess or coach or nursemaid or w

Reader Reviews

Average Rating of 3.5 from 2 reviews: ****
Peter Christian

A novel very much in the style of Algernon Blackwood; it could have been a very good short story but as a novel it is way too long; the end is quitepredictable

C. Alan Loewen

John William Wall (1910 – 1989), writing under the pen name Sarban, was a British writer and diplomat.

His diplomatic legacy is certainly greater than his literary legacy, but what he did write is worth noting.

Ringstones is a dark fantasy that takes place in a desolate English countryside at a remote manor called Ringstones after the local stone circle. Daphne Hazel becomes a summer governess to three children who seem unworldly and fay.

In a manner reminiscent of Arthur Machen (The Great God Pan, The White People), the horror grows so subtly, you don't know it is on you until almost the very last page.

If your taste runs to the weird and fantastic, Ringstones is well worth the time and patience.



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Author of the Day

Chadwick Wall
Chadwick Wall has written for the New Orleans Times-Picayune, the Sewanee Purple, the Riverside Reader, the Baton Rouge Advocate, and most recently After years living in many cities and regions, he counts himself lucky enough to reside in the laid-back yet vibrant, friendly and creative city of Austin. Here he spends many of his days and nights either holed up like a hermit, reading or writing away-or prowling around, investigating all of the live music, delicious cuisine, and cultural hotspots he can find. As our Author of the Day, Chad tells us all about his latest book, The Second Cortez.
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