After the sudden death of Anthea, his British-born wife, American Jeffrey Kearin discovers a cache of letters from her childhood which reveal  that the thirteen-year-old Anthea and a couple of friends visited Robert Bennington, a children’s writer who was later charged with molesting.  Jeffrey travels to England to investigate, and finds that one of the girls, Moira, ran away later in the year and was never seen again; he makes his way to Bennington’s old home-county of Cornwall in search of answers, but things only get more mysterious.

Hand’s story has a nice atmosphere of strangeness, and its fantastic elements are among the most interesting and distinctive in the anthology. Overall, though, I don’t think ‘Near Zennor’ reaches the same level of intensity as some of the other stories.

Rating: ***

Elizabeth Hand’s website