Here at Farrago Books our mission is to bring you fiction that will make you smile. It could be the gentle smile of a cosy mystery being unravelled in a sleepy English village, or the manic grin of a vigilante serial killer tearing down Florida’s highways in search of stolen loot – but right now it’s witching season, and the only grins we need are the terrifyingly spooky ones on our Halloween pumpkins.
So for all your haunted reading needs, we have a classic fantasy novel laced with dark humour by Roger Zelazny: A Night in the Lonesome October. Imagine a novel narrated by Jack the Ripper’s faithful dog Snuff, telling the story of a mysterious Game in which the eldritch spirits of H. P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu realm will be let in to destroy humankind or kept out for another year. Now imagine a field of competing Players including Sherlock Holmes, Dr Frankenstein and Rasputin – and imagine that all the action is told from the point of view of their familiars: a cat, a snake, a squirrel and so on.
If that’s not weird enough for you, wait till you find out that many Zelazny fans all over the world join together in reading a chapter a day for the month of October, year after year. It’s that good!
And you don’t have to take my word for it. George R. R. Martin called this book “the last great novel by one of the giants of the genre”, and Neil Gaiman wrote a short story inspired by it. In fact, a few weeks ago Neil confirmed to us that he’s still a fan