Synopses & Reviews
For all its flaws and idiosyncracies, The Night Land is utterly unsurpassed, unique, astounding. A mutant vision like nothing else there has ever been.China Mieville
One of the most potent pieces of macabre imagination ever written.H.P. Lovecraft,
[Good science fiction stories] give, like certain rare dreams, sensations we never had before, and enlarge our conception of the range of possible experience... W.H. Hodgson's The Night Land [makes the grade] in eminence from the unforgettable sombre splendour of the images it presents... C.S. Lewis
In the far future, an unnamed narrator, who along with what remains of the human race dwells uneasily in an underground fortress-city surrounded by brooding, chaotic, relentless Watching Things, Silent Ones, Hounds, Giants, "Ab-humans," Brutes, and enormous slugs and spiders, follows a telepathic distress signal into the unfathomable darkness.
The Earth's surface is frozen, and what's worse at some point in the distant past, overreaching scientists breached "the Barrier of Life" that separates our dimension from one populated by "monstrosities and Forces" who have sought humankind's destruction ever since. Armed only with a lightsaber-esque weapon called a Diskos, and fortified only by his sense of Honor, our hero braves every sort of terror en route to rescue a woman he loves but has never met.
Hodgson wrote in an archaic style that adds to the story's ever-mounting sense of uncanny anxiety. HiLoBooks' edition of his novel omits two sections which have until now prevented it from reaching a wider audience: the tale's romantic prefatory conceit and its lengthy, relatively uneventful dénouement. Our otherwise unabridged version begins and ends with the most dramatic moments in this epic tale: chapters Two and Eleven.