Thursday, August 28, 2014

Death and the Maiden




"Ms. Nelson's overview of the origins of the Gothic genre and its later ramification into sub-genres such as the ghost story, vampire tale, esoteric thriller and post-apocalyptic survival narrative is lively and sharp. She is equally at home discussing high and low art, and is at her most persuasive when tracing the literary evolution of specific motifs. She notes that the medieval preoccupation with the image of Death and the Maiden, ubiquitous in the art of the period and in manuscripts such as the late 15th-century "Danse Macabre des Femmes," persists in pulp romance in the figure of the homme fatale, or darkly attractive and sexually dangerous male lover."

--Elizabeth Lowry reviewing Victoria Nelson's Gothicka