Alice Thompson’s gripping, deep space novel sees scientist and dream investigator Artemis travelling to the distant moon of Oneiros. Her ship, the Chimera has been sent to look for organisms that will help assuage Earth’s global warming, but it becomes clear on the journey that there are other disturbing reasons for the mission.
Accompanied by dryads, sophisticated AIs with synthetic bodies, nothing is quite as it seems, even desire. This is a story of transfiguration, dreams and identity. Are we just a template of memories and experiences, or is there something that makes us uniquely human? And what is the role of emotion in forming consciousness?
A poetic, icy quality in Thompson’s writing reflects the snow-capped moon of dreams called Oneiros.
‘The Book Collector throws the essential elements of the gothic chiller into a blender and what emerges is something between pastiche and critique, in which its author never loses sight of the need to give her readers, first and foremost, an unputdownable yarn.’ —Alastair Mabbott, The Herald
‘Angela Carter crossed with the Scottish diffidence of Muriel Spark.’ —Ali Smith
‘Fractured and lucid as a dream. Creepy and brilliant.’ —Ian Rankin
‘A gothic music video of a novel that whirls with weirdness... madly energetic ... genuinely scary.’ —Stephen King
‘Burnt Island is steeped in self-awareness, as a book about the process and effect of writing might be. It seems connected by literary electricity to other tales of isolation: The Shining, Pincher Martin, The Sea, The Sea.’ —John Self, The Guardian
‘The Book Collector shows a wry and sly mind at work throughout. Scottish literature would be thinner without this kind of challenging and cleverly-wrought writing.’ —Stuart Kelly, The Scotsman
‘Alice Thompson, one-time keyboard player for Eighties band The Woodentops, is now an established novelist, who has won praise from Ian Rankin and Stephen King. The horror master would no doubt approve of this slim Edwardian-era gothic, too, recalling as it does both Rebecca and The Silence Of The Lambs.’ —Stephanie Cross, The Daily Mail
‘With its gothic motifs, this dark portrait of a ‘fairytale’ marriage is full of mystery and suspense … an elegant and bloodily shocking entertainment.’ —Suzi Feay, The Guardian