A new book by Charles Lambert is always worth a look. This one is a Victorian ghost story, with an eerie atmosphere similar to his earlier novel The Children’s Home.
In 1880s London, Edward Montieth is a young gentleman who goes along to a séance with a group of acquaintances from his club. He becomes captivated with Settie, a flower-seller he sees outside the theatre, and they embark on a relationship. But society would frown on their love, because Settie is Romani. When she falls pregnant, Edward feels forced to take drastic measures – and tragedy follows…
Two years later, Edward has turned away from his old life and now lives outside of the city with his Sicilian wife Marisol and their son Tommaso. However, although Edward may wish to leave the past behind, the past isn’t finished with him. Lambert builds up an unsettling feeling through ordinary sights and sounds, like a child’s cry, that seem oddly out of place. The strangeness grows, in a tale that pits rationality against the supernatural as much as social structures clash with the freedom to go one’s own way. The Bone Flower is engrossing stuff, especially as the autumn nights draw in.
Published by Gallic Books.