Where books are chronicled from beginning to end, and never stop being read.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

King Stakh's Wild Hunt

King Stakh's Wild Hunt by Uladzimir Karatkevich
A dark, thrilling tale of an archaic adventure. 

The story is told in a reminiscent nature by 96 year old Andrey Belaretski; a folklorist, looking back upon an adventure from his youth. Young Andrey, lost within the remote swamps of a Belarusian territory, comes upon the grand, forgotten castle of Marsh Firs. 

There, he meets his high-born hostess, Lady Nadzeya Yanovsky, the last remaining heir to the Yanovsky line. She is deeply frightened of the all-too-real phantoms that exist inside and outside of the castle walls. Believing herself the next in line to receive the vengeful comeuppance doled out by the Lady-in-Blue for all the cursed Yanovskys', Nadzeya is grateful for Andrey's company.

"It was fright, chronic, horrible fright. Not the fright that makes one's hair stand on end for a moment, but the fright that finally becomes a habitual state impossible to get rid of even in one's sleep."

It is not long before Andrey himself becomes cognizant of a supernatural force. He takes it upon himself to help undo the awful curse that plagues both the mental and physical health of Lady Yanovsky. Thus, he becomes engaged in the dangerous game of King Stakh's Wild Hunt.

"What's fated must die... You are a stranger here, these cursed generations are no business of yours. King Stakh's Hunt comes at midnight. Await it."

As the story ensues, the reader is taken through a series of eerie twists and hits a shocking revelation that threatens the foundation of the characters' lives.

Uladzimir Karatkevich (November 26, 1930 - July 25, 1984) created a profoundly macabre and emotive story that will both engage and excite all readers.

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