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The River of Death

A Tale of London In Peril

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Author: Fred M. White
Published: 1904
Language: English
Wordcount: 8,670 / 25 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 75.6
LoC Category: PS
Downloads: 982
Added to site: 2007.08.17
mnybks.net#: 17962
Excerpt

red. "Upon my word, it makes me creepy to think about it. Got your stuff ready? Want anything?"

"Anything in the way of food, you mean?" Chase asked.

"That's it. No? So much the better; because when that copy goes upstairs not a soul leaves the premises till the paper has gone to bed."

An hour later the presses were roaring: presently huge parcels of damp sheets were vomited into the street. Under the glare of the arc lamps perspiring porters ghostly blue and spectral vans waited. The whole street was busy with the hum of high noon. And all the while, a little way beyond the radius of purple arcs, London slept . . .

London awoke presently and prepared for the day's work. There was no sign of fear or panic yet. A copy of the Telephone lay on a hundred thousand odd breakfast tables, news in tabloid form for busy men to read. As the sheets were more or less carelessly opened the eye was arrested by the scare heads on page 5. Nothing else seemed to be visible:


THE

Reader Reviews

Average Rating of 4 from 1 reviews: ****
2014.12.13
Lisa Carr
****.

A prescient story of a prolonged drought and heat wave in England, leading up to the Thames shrinking. Then, Bubonic Plague is found upstream, and most of London's drinking water is cut off.
A convincing account of rioting to get water, that unfortunately pulls it punch at the end. Well, the author had to end it some way; at least they didn't turn into zombies.


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Simon Clark
Simon Clark lives in Doncaster, South Yorkshire and his stories have been published in Darklands 2, Dark Voices 5 and The Year's Best Horror Stories. His work has been broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and he has also written some prose for U2. In his latest horror novel, Vampyrrhic, Clark brought horrific viking warriors from long ago to the shores of England in the form of undead vampires. As our Author of the Day, he tells us all about it.
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