Monday, 29 January 2018

'Mother Love'

Alison Faye's story in WHA 2 is an interesting variation on a theme explored by - among others - Ray Bradbury.

A boy struggles to make the best of a situation in which there can be no good outcome. The style and setting are olde worlde, but there's nothing quaint or twee about the imagery. Poor little Ernest's mother has lost it, his father has gone, and the body of a baby brother is occupying a lot of his attention. Worthy gentlemen try to gain admittance to the house, but Ernest is having none of it.

There is a mad logic to it all, and the engine of the story is the way children are sometimes forced to confront situations that would defeat most adults. While relatively little happens, the overall feel is of a  dark, twisted version of one of those familiar Victorian paintings like 'The Awakening Conscience'. This one is not taken from the life, though.

So, another well-written tale from this interesting anthology, and we're nearly done. The last story is coming up!

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