Home - The Last Page Bookshop - The Horror Reviews Mail Hal C F Astell - Site Map

The Blood Bond

Novel by Emma Cave 1979.

In 1949, four new-found friends (at around fourteen years old) form a sort of club. To join they have to survive a trial by ordeal - they each play the truth game, where they answer any questions without lying; then the other three pick the worst thing for you to do. If you do it, you can join the club; if not, you're out. But Geoff dies during his ordeal and the remaining three make a blood pact never to tell how and why he died. Now, eleven years later, Esther, Brian and Charles meet again in London and that summer at Glan-yr-Afon starts to shape their lives.

The first two paragraphs are pretty good, but the book rapidly goes downhill from there. With a cover quote from Auberon Waugh, this ought to be quality literary stuff, but it is nothing more than a superficial waste of paper. We are supposed to care about the three main characters, respectively a raving Red, a mincing queen and a self-centred toff, but really we couldn't care less. We are supposed to believe their incredibly stupid behaviour, but we can't. And we are supposed to be surprised at the outcome, but those of us who actually get to the end are not surprised in the least. Anyway, most of us would have given up after a few pages. There is a lot of surface, but no depth. All that is left are a few cleverly chosen words or phrases that suggest that Mrs Cave ought to give up novel writing and take up poetry.


Home - The Last Page Bookshop - The Horror Reviews Mail Hal C F Astell - Site Map