We’re delighted to be on tour today sharing Alice-Jane’s thoughts on A Superior Spectre by Angele Meyer.
“A brilliant, deeply unsettling work.” Books + Publishing
Jeff is dying. Haunted by memories and grappling with shame, he runs away to a remote part of Scotland with a piece of beta tech that allows him to enter the mind of someone in the past. Instructed to only use it three times, Jeff – self-indulgent, isolated and deteriorating – ignores this advice.
In the late 1860s, Leonora lives in the Scottish Highlands, surrounded by nature. Contemplating the social conventions that bind her, her contented life and a secret romantic friendship with the local laird are interrupted when her father sends her to stay with her aunt in Edinburgh. But Leonora’s ability to embrace her new life is shadowed by a dark presence that begins to lurk behind her eyes, and strange visions.
A Superior Spectre is a novel about curiosity, entitlement and manipulation. It reminds us that the scariest ghosts aren’t the ones that go bump in the night, but those that are born and create a place for themselves in the human soul.
A Superior Spectre by Angela Meyer was published by Saraband Books (£8.99) on 15 August 2019 and is available to purchase now.
Angela Meyer has written her story in the wilds of the Scottish highlands. These serve as an escape for character Jeff from modern life, and for Leonora, whose hearts and fate is entwined with nature.
The link forged between Leonora and Jeff is of Jeff’s choosing, making Leonora extremely vulnerable to the intrusions of his mind and his deeply troubled thoughts.
This unwanted connection on Leonora’s part offers her no benefits, whilst selfishly Jeff is allowed to escape his ailing body.
Meyer allows for the reader to question the morality concerned with developing a technological age whereby such things would be possible. One can learn hugely from the past, especially through the minds one is connected to, however to what purpose? For the human mind is so delicate in it’s constitution that to harass it from within is surely only going to lead to destruction.
A Superior Spectre is a deeply intriguing story – full of futuristic technologies that clash with human morals and nature.
Angela Meyer’s Joan Smokes won the inaugural Mslexia Novella Competition in 2019. Her short fiction has been widely published, including in Best Australian Stories, Island, The Big Issue, The Australian, The Lifted Brow and Killings. By day she works as a publisher for Echo Publishing, an Australian imprint of Bonnier Books UK, and in this role has discovered and developed a range of award-winning, globally published and bestselling talent, including global number one bestselling author Heather Morris. A Superior Spectre, Angela’s debut novel, is already shortlisted for a number of prestigious awards.
You can find her online at literaryminded.com.au (where there are also some book club questions for A Superior Spectre), @literaryminded on Twitter and Instagram and @literarymindedblog on Facebook.
Don’t forget to check out the other hosts on tour.