Occultation by Laird Barron

Fried Egg

Well-Known Member
Nov 20, 2006

Has anyone read this? It only seems to be available in hard cover. Does anyone know if there are plans for it to be released in paperback?
I have it, and my buddy read it and said it wasn't very good.

I don't have much more info for ya. :)
I have it, and my buddy read it and said it wasn't very good.
Did your buddy like his first collection? I'm just trying to ascertain whether he doesn't like Barron generally or if his new collection is weaker.
I have not yet read it, but all the feedback I have seen on it has been very favorable, putting it at least on a level with The Imago Sequence, if not slightly above.

I'm not seeing Occultation listed in paperback (at least, not yet), but it is available in Kindle, should you have one of those devices....

I loved The Imago Sequence but I haven't got this one yet. Seems to be on par with that however, if the reviews can be believed.
I don't do Kindle and I would prefer to read paperback but I'm wondering whether I'll just have to bite the bullet and go for the hardback edition...
Well, I'm about half way through this collection and so far I'm loving it. I would agree that it is even better than his first collection. Every story has been fantastic.
Thanks Fried Egg. I liked his first collection and was waiting for someone I knew to read this one, especially since it's not available in my country and I'll have to order a copy. Am hoping Book Depository has it as then I can save on postage.
I've now finished. Here's my thoughts on it:

Wow, what a bleak, horrific universe that Barron presents in this collection. An array of veiled glimpses into the crawling chaos are collected here with these superbly well written stories.

There seems to be a strong if somewhat nebulous theme running through his work not too dissimilar from Lovecraft's in that there is a harsh, terrifying universe out there lying just beyond the bounds of our everyday perception but that occasionally people stray beyond that veil of ignorance and find out more than is good for them (and their sanity). This is demonstrated most clearly in stories such as "Mysterium Tremendum" and "The Broadsword". Some distant and lingering descendents of an ancient alien race wants us, to transform us into something quite terrifying, but not so much physically as psychologically. Sometimes this manifests itself in more traditional ways such as satanism and the occult in the stories "Catch Hell" and "Six Six Six". And other times it is only to reveal the depths to which humanity might sink with the unscrupulous underground artist in "Strappado" and a man who gets caught up between some strange cult and the insane vengeance of his ex lover in "--30--".

Stylistically, Barron never tells you too much, painting a picture of scarce, loosely connected details that the reader must read in between, fill in the gaps to complete the terrifying vision as far as they dare. It is all delivered in a rich, evocative prose in which the careful choice of words is just as important as the plot itself.

I found this collection to be of a consistently high standard throughout with no weak entries. If you are a fan of intelligently written horror and have not read Barron before, you will definitely want to read this. If you have read his previous collection "The Imago Sequence and other stories" then you will likely agree with me that Barron has gone on to even greater heights with this collection.
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