UK: Infinity Plus, 2015; PB. ISBN: 1512281255
UK: Infinity Plus, 2016; eBook. ASIN: B015HHGA04
Co-written with Garry Kilworth
Also included in this volume are two bonus stories: ‘The Fabulous Beast’ by Garry Kilworth, and ‘The Charisma Trees’ by Robert Holdstock.
Winner of the 1992 World Fantasy Award for Best Novella, and the 1994 British Science Fiction Award for Best Short Fiction.
“I am placing this entry at the beginning of my edited journal for reasons that will become apparent. Time is very short for me now, the final part of the ritual draws near…
I cannot pretend that I am not frightened.”
There were these two British writers, one lived in the country, the other in the city. The country writer loved to visit the city and partake of brandy and Greek kebabs in the local hostelry. The city writer liked to visit the country and guzzle ale and barbecued steak under the apple trees. The two writers needed an excuse for these indulgences, and so they invented one, and this excuse was called “collaborating on a story”…
It soon emerged that the story was to be about a legendary tree, which they both vaguely recalled from the tales their grandfathers used to tell them of mystery and myth. Soon they were delving with suppressed excitement into old documents at the British Museum and began to come up with some frightening discoveries.
The first of these finds was in studying the original text, in Anglo-Saxon, of the Old English poem “The Dream of the Rood”. The marrying of the “tree” (crucifixion cross) and the “thorn” (a runic character) was too elaborately regular to be an accident of metre or alliterative language. Other discoveries followed, and the story gradually surfaced, like a dark secret from its burial mound.
The Ragthorn: a dark and unsettling award-winning novella by Robert Holdstock and Garry Kilworth.
‘A dark and disturbing mixture of the fantasy and horror, The Ragthorn is an intelligent and erudite tale of obsession.’
This Is Horror
‘An outstanding, erudite piece of dark fiction … An extraordinary tale about resurrection and immortality… a great opportunity to discover (or re-discover) some excellent work by two very fine writers.’