|About the Book|
The Novgorod Master is imbued with dark humour, irony and a love of art. Sometimes sinister, sometimes sensitive, the characters in each of the tales are convincingly crafted, well rounded and credible, while at the same time propelling the storiesMoreThe Novgorod Master is imbued with dark humour, irony and a love of art. Sometimes sinister, sometimes sensitive, the characters in each of the tales are convincingly crafted, well rounded and credible, while at the same time propelling the stories forward.Cappadocian Moon and Other Stories: The Novgorod Master and Other StoriesbyChristopher ArthurBoth books now available in KindleLike the earlier Durham storyteller, Hugh Walpole, H.H. Munro, M.R. James and Roald Dahl have each played a part in the development of this author’s imagination, yet these tales are completely his own and show no signs of pastiche. Dark humour, irony, a vivid sense of place and a love of Art combine with the storyteller’s craft in putting together a suspenseful tale. The characters are sometimes sinister, but are always rounded and perfectly credible, though the circumstances in which they find themselves are disturbing.While the author’s love of the more positive cultural achievements of Humankind shines through, his stories recognise the darker side of the human psyche. An undercurrent of unease runs through them which, perhaps because it is not stressed, leaves a strong after taste in the reader’s mind.The author’s own travels provide the background to several of the tales, giving them an additional exotic flavour. His imagination is far-ranging and is in no sense parochial, though some of his characters might seem excessively self-absorbed.While like any storyteller his first duty towards his readers is to beguile and to entertain them, through the medium of his craft the author is also asking some serious- dare it be said existential?- questions about humanity and its place in the scheme of things. These, it goes without saying, are implicit and not overtly stated. So the readership he seeks- and his art deserves- is a thinking one, in possession of a sense of irony and an aesthetic sensibility alive to the trappings of the stories- a niche market, perhaps, but a civilised one, worthy of consideration and respect. The author is indeed proud to see himself working in the tradition of the four masters mentioned at the beginning of this piece.