Allyson Bird: The Book I Would Like To Be Buried With…

August 16, 2010 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Bury Me With This Book, Interviews 

The twenty-third entry of Bury Me… and Allyson Bird, author of the British FantasyAward winning Bull Running for Girls, shares her Book To Be Buried With…

Nest of Nightmares“‘The Wine Dark Sea by Robert Aickman would have made joint first choice but that problem has been decided for me because it has already been mentioned in this series …the other is Nest of Nightmares by Lisa Tuttle. A friend in California sent it to me last year and I was devastated when I had to send it back. Quite fortuitously, as copies are hard to come by now, I went into the dealers’ room at WHC Brighton this year and found a copy quickly. I asked Lisa to sign it – a wonderful moment for me.

In Nest of Nightmares Lisa Tuttle gives me the mystery I long for and everything isn’t neatly tied up. I don’t always want that. And, there is much more going on than the literal meaning of the words. Her fiction is enigmatic and all the stronger for being so. Her characters are ordinary people facing the strange and I remember the imagery long after the final page has been turned. Women are mad, or are they? They are taken over, as are some of the ones they love — but by whom or what? They feel trapped. One protagonist is belittled (Robert Holdstock mentioned this when he talked of the story, Flying to Byzantium in Horror 100 Best Books, edited by Stephen Jones and Kim Newman) and others are driven by ‘forces’ supernatural or otherwise. They face life and death and we wonder if they live …what will be the outcome? They are never let off easily. The way back can be fraught with danger and some make the choice to stay or can’t get away from the ‘supernatural’ knowing a price will be paid.

And then we come to The Nest at the end of the collection. A real horror story for me, and as with many of Lisa Tuttle’s stories, it can be read on many levels. There is so much pain and yet hope in that story. We are all mortal and just perhaps… whether it is something we shouldn’t wish for… there might just be more about our world that we can’t comprehend.”


Allyson Bird with Vincent Chong and Steve UphamAbout Allyson Bird:

Allyson’s debut collection, Bull Running for Girls, won The British Fantasy Society award for best collection in 2009. Her second, Wine and Rank Poison from Dark Regions Press, will be launched at Fantasycon this year. Autumn sees the publication of her first novel, Isis Unbound, from the same publisher. She is also co-editing an anti-fascist, anti-racist anthology, with Joel Lane, called Never Again. This is due out from Gray Friar Press in September.

A little on Wine and Rank Poison.

Revenge. Best served cold. Here are ten stories involving most of the deadly sins: greed, lust, envy, wrath, and pride. Strange stories woven in time and place from Ancient Greece to 1929 Odessa, Italy to the modern United States…stories that mix reality, mythology, legend, half-humans, and the inhuman…

Allyson lives near the South Yorkshire moors with her husband and young daughter.